I continue to peruse the library of YouTube videos I have created over the years.
This one has over eight thousand views. It is a poem of St. Thérèse about Joan of Arc. Thérèse is quoted as saying that the knowledge of Joan was one of the greatest graces of her life. She wrote what are called “pious recreations,” or, plays, about Joan for the Carmelites at her monastery. You can find her poems and plays online as well as in book format through the Institute of Carmelite Studies.
Thérèse’s interpretation of Joan of Arc was my point-of-entry into the phenomenology of Joan and “le royaume catholique et royal de France” (the kingdom of Catholic and Royal France). I entered into it one October day in 2008, in an instant, based on the circumstances surrounding a video I made from one of Thérèse’s poems.
The video featured here takes lines from Thérèse’s play written in support of Joan’s canonization. It is easy to forget that Joan was not canonized until after Thérèse’s death. However, before the middle of the next century, the 20th, both Thérèse and Joan would be canonized and both declared, equally, as secondary patronesses of France.
“The modern reader ought to keep in mind that, the day after the canonization of St. Therese of the Child Jesus, Pius XI presented her to a group of French pilgrims as ‘a new Joan of Arc’ (18 May 1925) and that, in the dark days of the Second World War, Pius XII declared her ‘the secondary patron of all of France’ on equal footing with St. Joan of Arc (3 May 1944).” ~ Therese of Lisieux. The Plays of Saint Therese of Lisieux: Pious Recreations (Kindle Locations 1052-1055). Kindle Edition.