A few quotes from the wonderful article on Therese in the newest Crusade magazine:
“Jesus, Jesus,” she would say, “If I were to write all my desires, I would have to borrow the book of life; I wanted to have achieved all these deeds for Thee…”
Her soul had infinite aspirations, she wanted to be a warrior, priest, apostle, doctor of the Church, and martyr; she felt the courage of a crusader…she wanted to die in the battlefield defending the Church, she wanted to preach the Gospel to all the continents and to the remotest islands.
This warrior aspect of Saint Therese’s soul is dominant in her moral profile. Yet even those who love her most tend to forget this trait.
“In my childhood, I dreamed of combating in the battlefield. When I began to learn the history of France, I was enchanted with the deeds of Joan of Arc; I felt in my heart a desire to imitate them.”
Saint Therese gradually became increasingly aware of the profound similarities between her life and that of the Virgin of Domremy.
Saint Therese signed her Canticle to obtain canonization of Saint Joan of Arc as “A French soldier, defender of the Church and admirer of Joan of Arc.”
Saint Joan, the Virgin of Orleans, and Saint Therese, the Virgin of Lisieux, are two models of militant Catholic combatants against the enemies of the Church and of Christian Civilization. Two great saints, though leading such different lives – one a strictly military life and the other a contemplative one – nonetheless have profound affinities with one another.
Saint Therese did not live to see Joan’s canonization, and she was far from imagining that on May 18, 1925, Pope Pius XI would present her, Saint Therese, to the Catholic world as “a new Joan of Arc”; and during the second world war, Pope Pius XII would declare her, like the Virgin of Orleans, “secondary patron of all France!”
Therese’s virtue imposes itself with incredible majesty; the child becomes a hero; a virgin with her hands full of flowers causes astonishment with her manly courage.