28 March 2015 marks the fifth centenary of the birth of St Teresa of Avila. Let Nothing Trouble You explores her remarkable story and the influence of this charming, attractive, witty woman, who fits as easily into the twenty-first century as into the sixteenth. Teresa belongs to everyone. She openly shares her humanity with us and teaches us how to make our own dreams come true.
Teresa of Avila lived well, prayed well and was as much at home in the kitchen as in the chapel. She knew how to make poetry, music and dance from her spiritual experiences.
Of the thousands of words written by her, few have struck such a universal chord throughout the centuries as the short, pithy lines of her ‘Bookmark’. They are her meditation on the daily struggle of life. They resonate within our own lives and speak to our restless hearts: words of wisdom that echo down the years and reveal a woman of deep spirituality, fully human and fully alive, an earthy mystic who never lost the common touch.
Her words hold a universal truth and remind us that all things pass and the ultimate, unchanging truth is found within the heart’s deep core, an immortal diamond, a world of beauty and wonder, waiting to be explored.
Teresa of Avila invites us to go cheerfully about our tasks. True holiness is joy: ‘a sad saint is a sorry saint.’ (Pope Francis)
Eugene McCaffrey is a Carmelite friar and a member of the Avila Centre of Spirituality in Dublin. He has written a number of books on prayer and spirituality including: Heart of Love, Patterns of Prayer, Let Yourself Be Loved and The Writings of St Teresa of Avila: An Introduction.