By Nqobile Ngcobo I recently sent a friend a message with a quote by St Therése of Lisieux. In the message, I referred to St Therese as my best saint friend. Afterwards, I realised that I didn’t hesitate in referring to this little saint as that, I simply thought, yes, she has become my friend. I first heard of St Therése a few years ago when I had to give a talk on a saint for one of our Life Nights at church. I had looked up some information on her and found a beautiful quote about how getting to heaven was about doing small things. It is then that I first heard about her ‘little way’. Last year, before her feast day, I was on a site that promotes novenas and I saw that they were about to start a novena to St Therése. I figured I’d ask her to intercede for me concerning my vocation. I didn’t realize when I started it, but St Therése was about to make her little self known to me. While she was alive, St Therése promised that when she was in heaven she would send roses as a sign of her love. Thus, roses have become a sign of her intercession when people pray a novena to her. Although the idea of receiving a rose sounded great, I didn’t really think I’d receive any great signs. A few days into the novena, the neighbours rose bush began to bloom incredible pink roses. They were of course beautiful, but I’d be foolish to take that as a sign. Then the next day, I walked into my room after being out for the morning, and on the shelf, I found a book of St Therése prayers just lying there. Turns out my mother decided to unpack a few boxes that had been in the garage and she had found it and decided to put it on my shelf. I hadn’t told her about praying the novena. In the eighth day, I found a rose quartz rock that I had won in a geology quiz and had lost soon after. Finding it after three years was a sign to me that St Therése wanted me to receive another ‘rose’. More than nice little signs, these roses were an indication to me that St Therése was indeed praying for me. It was a sign that, although it can often feel like our prayers are in vain, the saints are there constantly praying for us. I have not always understood the concept of the ‘communion of saints’ but in the last year I have come to understand that these men and women who are now living in eternal glory, pray for us always and provide a beautiful example of how God calls each and every one of us in a unique way. For St Therése, it was her life as a discalced Carmelite nun, whose innocent love for Christ, expressed beautifully in her writings, which has become a model for how we can all seek holiness in our lives. St Therése has remained in my life since that novena. I constantly look to her as an example of holiness and how we can all live for eternity. So yes, St Therése is my best saint friend. I pray we meet in heaven one day. For now I will continue to learn from her, love her, and allow her to teach me to love Christ as she did. St Therése of Lisieux, pray for us! For more on the Little Flower (as she was known) check out: http://www.littleflower.org/therese/ And https://www.ewtn.com/therese/novena.htm for the novena About the Author Nqobile Ngcobo I studied geology but I currently work in youth ministry. I love Jesus, coffee and pink roses. Above all, I’m just a catholic young woman trying to make it to heaven. I think St Therése and I will hang out there. I haven’t figured out how to adult yet, so until I do, I keep reminding myself that “Each woman who lives in light of eternity, can fulfill her vocation” – Edith Stein. Please pray for me, I’ll be praying for you.