During my Fall 2005 semester at Marquette University, my Christology professor asked us to write a paper on Jesus Christ.   The specifications were pretty broad and I felt the desire to write a paper that was more spiritual than intellectual.   I wanted to write a sort of prayerful reflection on the Way of the Cross.   I proposed such a project to my professor and he approved, so long as I incorporated the Christological writings of the saints.   I had already developed a great love for the Carmelite saints and I intended to use many of their writings.   My professor, however, suggested that I read St. Paul of the Cross and reflect upon his writings on the Passion of Christ.   I spent several hours looking for ANY book on St. Paul of the Cross until I came upon The Mysticism of the Passion in St. Paul of the Cross by Martin Bialas, CP.   I loved St. Paul's writings and I decided to include much of my paper on them.   The rest, as they say, is history!.........

Love Beyond All Telling

The most holy passion of Jesus is a sea of sorrows but, at the same time, a sea of

love.  Pray to God that he teach you to fish in this sea; then dive into [its depths]. 

No matter how deep you go, you will never reach bottom. Allow yourself to be

penetrated completely by sorrow and love.  In this way, you will thoroughly

appropriate the passion of Christ and make his sufferings your own... 

faith and love will teach you this.1
 

In the fearful mist of the garden, Jesus prayed in agony: “Father, if you are willing, take this cup away from me; still, not my will but yours be done.”2  Doing God’s will and trusting it completely is our ultimate happiness, for it is through this that we come to perfect beatitude.  It is difficult, however, to recognize joy when we experience the agonizing suffering of Christ in the garden.  “This contentment  is not felt, since at this time there is a distress of a particular kind.  It is [rather] a certain contentment that the most holy will of our good God is being done.”3  Our attempt to overcome our own wills, our persistent temptations, and our desire to forsake the greatest Good for a lesser one are constant struggles.  Yet God delights in this struggle “because the soul becomes indifferent to such an extent that it no longer considers whether it is in pain or in joy.  It remains attached only to the most holy will of her beloved Spouse, Jesus...”4  For in the presence of Christ’s greater affliction, how can we feel our own?5

            Not only is seeking and acting upon God’s will our happiness, but it is also our way to perfection.  Perfection resides in conformation to the will of God.  This complete obedience fosters all other virtues. “Great perfection is found in resigning yourself in all things to the divine will; an even greater perfection is to live abandoned, with complete indifference to the divine good pleasure.  Still, the pinnacle of perfection is to nourish yourself on the divine will in a spirit of pure faith and love.”6  We must defer to the divine will always and come to seek it as we seek sustenance, so that such seeking becomes natural and necessary for our survival.

            As the crosses God designs for us to bear become evermore formidable–as the time approaches for us to take up our crosses and follow Christ and His Cross–we feel more abandoned and alone than ever.  Through faith, “the cross of our sweet Jesus has already planted its roots more deeply in [our hearts], and now [we] are singing, ... ‘to suffer and not die’, or... ‘to either suffer or die’, or better... ‘to neither suffer nor die’, but to be solely transformed by the divine good pleasure.”7  This mysterious joy in agony constitutes the heart of our love for Christ, for it is only through pain that we can learn the meaning of true love.

            To love in pain; to love when we know that this love will be our greatest source of pain–this is what it means to embody the Crucifixion.  “The soul, in being ‘penetrated’ by love and pain, ‘thoroughly makes the passion of Jesus its own.’”8  Yet how often do we shy away from pain, and in doing so, shy away from true love?  When denial leads to abundance, when detachment leads to greater attachment, when loss leads to gain, and when crucifixion leads to resurrection, we are left in wonder to struggle with the mysterious truths of painful, sorrowing love.  “Love is a unifying virtue that makes its own the pain of its beloved Good...By mingling, in a great way, love with sorrow and sorrow with love, a loving and sorrowful blend occurs, but so united that one cannot distinguish love from sorrow or sorrow from love as long as the loving soul takes delight in its sorrow and celebrates its sorrowing love.”9

            The crucifixion is the ultimate example of sorrowing love.  More pain the world will never know.  More pure and intense love the world will never experience.  It is by uniting ourselves to the pain of Christ’s crucifixion that we are able to share in His love.  Yet it is also through our love of Christ that we find ourselves sharing in His pain.

When completely immersed in pure love...the soul in an instant finds itself wholly immersed in the sea of suffering of our Savior.  Then...the soul understands all its suffering, because the passion of Jesus is a work of love; and, when totally lost in God, who is charity, who is all love, the soul becomes a blend of love and sorrow, since it remains completely penetrated by and wholly immersed in sorrowing love and in loving sorrow.10 

            In the Heart of Christ are this pain and sorrow totally and completely transformed into love.  This love in turn permits us to embrace our pain and delight in our sorrows.  The King “with nowhere to rest his head”11 found the intersection of the beams of pain and love on the Cross the only appropriate place to do so.  The overlapping of death and life, the undeniable union of sorrow and joy, the convergence of solitude and communion–these are the eternal realities in which we dwell.  That is, of course, until the day when all “else” melts away and we are left with one longing and the perfect fulfillment of that desire.  For then these realities will no longer exist.  In their place will be the one true Reality, from which these others and we ourselves flow.  May it be in the intensity of this pain and love that we come to recognize and embrace this one true Reality alone, made so visibly present in the passion and death of Christ.

            The Crucifixion united pain and love for all eternity–they are now intrinsically connected at the spot upon which rested the Sacred Head of Christ.  This Head, surrounded by the sorrowful thorns which would comprise His glorified crown, represents what results when we, in love, delight in our pain and sorrow: we will receive the crown of glory–so ugly and repulsive to the world, yet so radiant in beauty and splendor for all eternity.

            Christ’s desire is to claim us as His beloved.  This desire is extended to all, yet specific to each.  As the prize of acceptance He offers a gift: a crown.   We must accept His crown of roses, although it is comprised of many thorns.  Yet it must be so.  For the world misunderstands suffering–it attempts to eliminate pain.  The world would be scandalized by the acceptance of such a crown.  Thus the necessity of roses, the jewels of holiness which are so perfectly and lovingly adhered to each thorn.

            We are to embrace our crowns, or rather they are to embrace us.  They are meant to  encompass our lives, causing great suffering yet permeating the world with the fragrance of beauty, wonder, mystery, and purity.  To the world, a crown of roses is merely an ornament, which by the beauty of nature brings joy and contentment to its wearer.  In reality, however, this bittersweet crown of thorns is not symbolic, but real.  It pierces its wearer’s head.  It becomes a part of him.  It becomes him–the constant reminder of a choice, a sacrifice, a vow, a life.

            This choice, sacrifice, vow, and life are those of the Blessed Mother.  Hence the offering of a similar crown.  For she would choose none other than a crown modeled after the perfect crown of her Son.  And, when crowned Queen of heaven and earth, she chose to share His crown.  Yet this crown was glorified.  The thorns which had previously pierced her heart and her mind and enveloped her entire being now point outward as channels of grace, through which her Son showers the world with His abundant love.

            With her golden crown of protruding thorns, the Blessed Mother contributes to her Son’s generous distribution of the grace necessary for us to accept our own crowns.  To the crowns of the weak she adds many flowers.  Upon the heads of the skeptical, she places crowns slowly, easing them into their proper position.  To those who are strong in their weakness, to those hidden from the world, and to those who possess nothing but her Son, she gives crowns in their thorny, repulsive simplicity.  She allures those who are curious–those open to the truth.  Making attractive to the world what is not is no easy task.  Yet she does not cease in offering what does not seem capable of being accepted, what does not seem to free but to confine, what seems to cause only pain and sadness.  And it is through the free and glorious acceptance of her crown from her Son that she is able to offer anything to the world.

            To embrace the truth, we must each accept our crown of thorns.  As we do so, the blood of sin and injustice, death and destruction will run down our faces and fill our eyes, blurring our vision and blinding any sight we may have had of true faith, hope, trust, and love.  Tempted to despair, we are able to see nothing of the Good, the True, the Beautiful–we fail to see Him.  Yet this apparent lifelessness cannot and does not last forever.  For, in whatever way He sees fit, Christ will send us our own Veronica, whose gesture will once again allow us to weep tears of pure joy in thanksgiving for such great and sanctifying suffering.  She will wipe that from our eyes which has kept us from seeing her Lord.

            The image left upon her humiliating cloth is our own, yet not our own.  As the ugliness of sin is wiped away from our human faces12, a glimpse is caught of Another, whose imprint was similarly left upon a sacred cloth so many years ago.  “The Word will imprint in your soul, as in a crystal, the image of His own beauty, so you may be pure with His purity, luminous with His light.”13  “So let us contemplate this adored Image, let us remain unceasingly under its radiance so that it may imprint itself on us.”14  The goal: to see this Other’s face and no longer our own, to recognize no feature or trace belonging to our own countenances.  The imprints left as our faces are wiped must be identical to His.  We must be so consumed by this Other that we no longer see ourselves, but are concerned for the Other alone–a consummation seeping to the depths of the heart, permeating the inner recesses of the soul. 

When there is union of love, the image of the Beloved is so sketched in the will, and drawn so intimately and vividly, that it is true to say that the Beloved lives in the lover and the lover in the Beloved....Everything can be called a sketch of love in comparison with that perfect image, the transformation in glory.  Yet the attainment of such a sketch of transformation in this life is a great blessing, for with this transformation the Beloved is very pleased.  Desiring the bride to put Him as a sketch in her soul, He said in the Song of Songs: Put Me as a seal upon your heart...15 

Our wills must be projected upon these cloths, illuminating the true desire of our souls, transformed in Christ’s love to Him.

            Christ accepts His cross as an example of the way in which we are to accept the truth.  He did not embrace His cross half-heartedly or indifferently, but completely with the intent of carrying it to the end.  In the face of sure death, Christ spoke the truth and accepted His cross.  We must imitate Him by proclaiming the truth in the face of adversity and by accepting our crosses, knowing undoubtedly that such an acceptance will lead to pain and death, yet hoping simultaneously that this pain and death will ultimately be transformed into eternal joy and everlasting life.

            Christ’s cross was not light, nor was the path He was forced to walk easy.  Thus, He fell and rose three times, just as He would die and on the third day rise again.  “The triple collapse under the burden of the cross corresponds to the triple fall of humanity: the first sin; the rejection of the Savior by His chosen people; the falling away of those who bear the name of Christian.”16 The burden of sin takes the form of a cross: the overwhelming rejection of Love crossed with the weight of the denial of true Goodness and Beauty.  This intersection crushed Christ’s human body–attempting to crush His human spirit.

            Christ’s weakness, made visible in His three falls, is the means through which we overcome our total powerlessness.  For “one fall is not sufficient for a person to be lost, nor are many.”17   Perseverance in weakness, continuing on in complete desolation, coming to prefer the monotony of suffering to ecstacy18–these are the traits of Christ’s power in powerlessness.  The road gets easier, yet harder.  We become weaker, yet learn to rely upon Christ’s strength.  Our faith is strongest when we most recognize our utter weakness.  “Suffering overcome by one’s own strength is not suffering for faith.  The strength of faith lies in God, and its proof in the overtaxing of one’s own power.”19 We need Christ in His powerful powerlessness to overcome our weak and failing faith.  “If you do not fear falling alone, do you presume that you will rise up alone?  Consider how much more can be accomplished by two together than by one alone.”20

            Face down, beneath the weight of the cross, we taste creation.  We smell it and feel it.  Yet this intimacy yields only desire for the Creator, for union with God.  For “the true remedy against a fall is to be attached to the cross and trust in Him who placed Himself on it.”21  The cross is the surest and truest way to union with God.  By what other means could we be so fixedly attached to Christ, so near His Heart?  When so united to Him, each step we take is with Him.  Not only each step, but each fall is executed in union with the Lord.  “God’s works are always attached in order that God’s magnificence may be displayed.  Namely, when things seem to be mostly fallen to the ground, then it turns out that they are raised to an unexpected height.”22  For someone completely united to Christ on the Cross, this falling is not a falling from, but a falling to.  He is “like a tired and harassed traveler, who reaches the end of his journey and falls over.  Yes, but [he will] be falling into God’s arms!”23  Even so, this falling into the arms of God is not easily perceived, for “God holds the soul in his arms, but the soul is not aware of it.  Hence it seems to be utterly abandoned and in great misery.”24  There is hope, however, for once perfect union has been obtained, no obstacle, no matter how painful or tempting, can cause one to be separated from Christ and His cross.

            Carrying our crosses, we carry Christ.  Being lead by our crosses, Christ carries us.  Cruciformity corresponds to Christ likeness.  In humility, we enter into His weakness, which is none other than divine strength.  We are then able to proclaim:  “He makes up for my weaknesses and, if I fall at every passing moment, He is there to help me up again and carry me further into Himself, into the depths of that divine essence where we already live by grace and where I would like to bury myself so deeply that nothing could make me leave.”25

              Christ reaches Calvary a bloody mess–His glory hidden in His gaping wounds.  He prepares for the end, which is so drastically near.  As though He had not endured enough, He submits to the final act of salvation, being nailed to the cross and lifted high above the world. “[His] afflictions...are the pledges of [His] love.”26  His wounds, so painful and torturous, are symbolic of His eternal loyalty.  Touching the nails we so brutally placed into the hands of Christ, we recall the thorn of love which Christ so lovingly embedded in each of our hearts. 

            In faith, Christ was able to permit His first hand to be nailed to the Cross, for He believed above all else that it was the will of His beloved Father.  It was through hope that He surrendered His other hand to its nail, for His sight was ultimately set on the Father–this nail being necessary for reunion with Him.  And, when He was emptied of all else, it was in love that Christ subjected His feet to that final nail.  With this great act of love completed, He hung for all to see as the beautiful witness of perfect, loving obedience to the Father.

            In imitation of this complete and total submission, we must ask for “the wisdom and the strength to pledge ourselves, to bind ourselves irrevocably to the law of [His] love.  Let us so bind ourselves that we will not only adhere to [Him] in times of consolation,...but yet more securely in the bleak and bitter seasons of the soul–in the hard iron of the winters of the spirit.”27 To further conform ourselves in perfect obedience, we must be “marked with His brand, which is that of the cross.”28  For “[God’s] will, at times so crucifying, never ceases to be all love, since love is the very essence of God.”29

Love, as the very essence of God, is sufficient of itself, it gives pleasure by itself and because of itself.  It is its own merit, its own reward.  Love looks for no cause outside itself, no effect beyond itself.  Its profit lies in its practice. [One loves because he loves, one loves that he may love.] Love is a great thing so long as it continually returns to its fountainhead, flows back to its source, always drawing from there the water which constantly replenishes it.30 

God is the source of all love.  God wills out of love, although often causing pain.  So frequently it is through the acceptance of pain that we are able to recognize and accept God’s love.

            In the end, we must be crucified to our own crosses.  Our hands must let go of earthly possessions and the hands of others to be free enough to be nailed to our own crosses.  For the Father desires us, as His children, to “be conformed to the image of his Son.”31  This conformation is commanded so that we may proclaim along with St. Paul, “ I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me!”32

            Yet we cannot be crucified with Christ without imitating His total detachment and utter abandonment in love. “Suffering represents the deepest and most convincing kind of love.”33  “[Christ] will see that whoever loves Him much will be able to suffer much for Him; whoever loves Him little will be capable of little...The measure for being able to bear a large or small cross is love.”34  This love, which will allow us to suffer, is for Christ, but also of Christ.  It is Christ’s love that allows us to love.  “Of all the movements, sensations and feelings of the soul, love is the only one in which the creature can respond to the Creator and make some sort of similar return however unequal though it be...The Bridegroom’s love, or rather the love which is the Bridegroom, asks in return nothing but faithful love.  Let the beloved, then, love in return.”35

            To be completely crucified with Christ is the ultimate act of love we can make in this life. “For when God loves, all he desires is to be loved in return; the sole purpose of his love is to be loved, in the knowledge that those who love him are made happy by their love.”36  So too, as Christ was crucified, His only desire for us is to be crucified with Him, because He knows that this crucifixion will bring us nothing but joy and will draw us only further into the deep abyss of His merciful love.

            Hanging alone upon our crosses, each of us attains the true goal of our lives: union with God.  It seems a simple task, but the obstacles to such a goal are more numerous than the drops of blood lost by Christ in His passion.  It therefore seems nearly impossible for us to obtain this union.  Yet it has been done–it is the first and perfect example of Christ that we must strive to copy:

He brought about the reconciliation and union of the human race with God through grace.  The Lord achieved this...at the moment in which He was most annihilated in all things: in His reputation before people...; in His human nature, by dying; and in spiritual help and consolation from His Father, for He was forsaken. ... The journey, then, does not consist in consolations, delights and spiritual feelings, but in the living death of the cross, sensory and spiritual, exterior and interior.37 

            Christ hung abandoned.  So too is “the man who embraces the cross...always alone, looking up at one who is not looking down, but who is in turn looking upward towards the God who has forsaken them.  That is the important thing: that he lifts our abandonment into his own greater abandonment.”38  “The cross is again raised before us.  It is the sign of contradiction.  The Crucified looks down on us: ‘Are you also going to abandon me?’”39  Some never encounter Christ crucified.  So many turn from Him.  Many abandon Him after having experienced Him in His ultimate act of love.  He hangs alone, in utter abandonment.

            Yet one remained with Him.  She remained as near to Him as ever throughout His abandonment, for she shares His Heart.  The Sacred Heart of Jesus is one with the Immaculate Heart of Mary.  Both were pierced by so many thorns, and are now inextricably intertwined–to never be separated again.  This one Heart, however, had two more piercings to endure.

               The first of these piercings occurred while Christ was still alive, while the Blessed Mother could still watch Him suffer.  Might we not ask of her:

Or were those words: Woman, behold your Son, no more than a sword to you, truly piercing your heart, cutting through to the division between soul and spirit?  What an exchange!  John is given to you in place of Jesus, the servant in place of the Lord, the disciple in place of the master;  the son of Zebedee replaces the Son of God, a mere man replaces God himself.  How could these words not pierce your most loving heart, when the mere remembrance of them breaks ours, hearts of stone and iron though they are!40 

What would be thought to have comforted the Blessed Mother was no more than a thorn placed into her already-pierced heart.  Yet this painful thorn, accepted out of pure love, served only to further unite her Heart with her Son’s for all eternity.

            “We have always seen that those who were closest to Christ our Lord were those with the greatest trials...look at what His glorious Mother suffered.”41  Yet the Blessed Mother did not plead with Her Son to save Himself.  Nor did she vocalize her desire to die in His place, or at the very least, to die with Him.  We must call out to the Blessed Mother, the archetype of all followers of the cross42, and allow her fiat (begun at the Annunciation and completed at the foot of the cross) to bear fruit within us:

Let it happen, Mother.  You cannot change it.  He is older than you are, and you would not exist had it not been ordained thus from the beginning. You stand because He is lying down, you move freely because he is being nailed to the cross... This is not your will, not even your most intensely heroic will: it is the will of your son, your God, who is letting himself be crucified for your sake and for the sake of all men.  Let it happen!  In the name of God say yes!  Deliver your own will unto this alien one (which grew out of your own and leads you where you do not want to go).43

The Blessed Mother’s suffering was not merely pain, but rather it was death.  For that is the true meaning of death–separation from God.  “[Christ] died in body through a love greater than anyone had known. [The Blessed Mother] died in spirit through a love unlike any other since his.”44

            The second piercing of the one Heart of Jesus and Mary took place after Jesus had already died His bodily death.  Once again, we must exhort the Mother of God:

Truly, O blessed Mother, a sword has pierced your heart.  For only by passing through your heart could the sword enter the flesh of your Son.  Indeed, after your Jesus–who belongs to everyone, but is especially yours–gave up his life, the cruel spear, which was not withheld from His lifeless body, tore open his side.  Clearly it did not touch his soul and could not harm him, but it did pierce your heart.  For surely his soul was no longer there, but yours could not be torn away.  Thus the violence of sorrow has cut through your heart, and we rightly call you more than martyr, since the effect of compassion in you has gone beyond the endurance of physical suffering.45 

This piercing of Jesus’ Heart did not stop in His lifeless flesh, but was felt intensely by the tender heart of His Mother, who at that moment could be torn from her Son by no amount of suffering or grief.

            This second piercing of the Heart of Jesus and Mary was not done merely as a test to verify whether or not Christ was dead, but, by the divine will, was done in love for the sake of humanity.  “The savior hangs before you with a pierced heart.  He has spilled His heart’s blood to win your heart....The arms of the Crucified are spread out to draw you to His heart.  He wants your life in order to give you His.”46  It was necessary that His Heart be opened so that we could find our way into it.  The conversion of St. Longinus, the Roman centurion who drove his spear into the side of Christ, proves the accessibility of the Pierced Heart of Christ, entrance into which transforms one with an unequaled power of love.

            “The fountain from the heart of the Lamb has not dried up.  We can wash our robes clean in it even today as the thief on Golgotha once did.  Trusting in the atoning power of this holy fountain, we prostrate ourselves before the throne of the Lamb....Let us draw from the springs of salvation for ourselves and for the entire parched world.”47  From His pierced side the Church is born–blood and water pour forth the holy sacraments.  His self-emptying pours fullness into our lives.  The Church at Christ’s death was not composed only of the faithful who stood by Him to His death, but of all those who loved Him and followed Him in their hearts.  The power of the sacraments is shown by the conversion of the first to come in contact with this sacred blood and water.  We find our purpose in the eternal self-emptying of Christ, made most prominently visible in the Eucharist, in which He gives all of Himself that we “might have life and have it more abundantly.”48

            Having reached Calvary, do we refrain from completing the task set before us?  Or do we die to ourselves, to others, and to the world?  There is no perfect union, no Resurrection, no redemption, without crucifixion.  “The soul united with Christ lives out of His life–however, only in surrender to the Crucified when she has traveled the entire way of the cross with Him.”49  We must “think always of mystical death.  Whoever is mystically dead thinks of nothing except living a Godlike life; he wants no other object save the great and good God and leaves aside all other thoughts, even though they be good, to have one alone: God, the supreme Good.”50

            After enduring this passion and dying to all that is “other,” we may begin to enter into eternal life with Christ.  By becoming “completely crucified with the Divine Spouse...all may see in [us] a true portrait of the Crucified and sense the sweetest fragrance of the holy virtues of the Lord, in interior and exterior modesty, in patience, in gentleness, suffering, charity, humility, and in all others that follow.”51  In this way, then, we witness to the Resurrection of Christ through our imitation of Him crucified.  We must be to the world “the day when God is dead, and the Church holds her breath.  The strange day that separates life and death in order to join them in a marriage beyond all human thought.  The day which leads through hell, and, after all the paths of the world, into a pathless existence.”52  One’s crucified life is no longer of this world, but he has not yet to attain the perfect bliss of heaven.  “To suffer and to be happy although suffering, to have one’s feet on the earth, to walk on the dirty and rough paths of this earth and yet to be enthroned with Christ at the Father’s right hand, to laugh and cry with the children of this world and ceaselessly sing the praises of God with the choirs of angels–this is the life of the Christian until the morning of eternity breaks forth.”53

Life now seems ambiguous.  To which realm do we belong–earth or heaven, temporality or eternity, death or life?  The answer to this shadowy question is found in the bold and definitive life of Christ.  “Since Jesus is both God and man, the soul cannot be united to the most sacred humanity without being at the same time liquefied and raised to a very deep and experiential knowledge of the Divinity.”54  The search for this answer is “practised in the most holy Heart of Jesus, because, being entirely united to the most holy humanity of Jesus Christ, the true God, the soul cannot help but abase itself entirely in the infinite ocean of Divinity.”55  After having been crucified with Him, one comes to share in the nothingness between His Death and Resurrection.  This state of being is not purposeless, but necessary.  For “it is fitting that the soul be in this sepulcher of dark death in order that it attain the spiritual resurrection for which it hopes.”56

 


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1.  Martin Bialas, C.P., The Mysticism of the Passion in St. Paul of the Cross, (San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 1990), 230.

2.  Luke 22:42.

3.  Bialas, 170.

4.  ibid, 171.

5.  St. Teresa of Avila, The Collected Works of St. Teresa of Avila, trans. Kieran Kavanaugh and Otilio Rodriguez, (Washington, DC: ICS Publications, 1976-85), The Way of Perfection, ch. 26, no. 8, pp. 135-136.

6.  Bialas, 175.

7.  ibid, 182.

8.  ibid, 233-234.

9.  ibid, 232-233.

10.  ibid, 236-237.

11.  Matthew 8:20, Luke 9:58.

12.  Caryll Houselander, The Way of the Cross, (New York: Sheed & Ward, Inc., 1955), 73.

13.  Blessed Elizabeth of the Trinity, The Complete Works of Blessed Elizabeth of the Trinity, vol. 2, trans. Anne Englund Nash, Letters from Carmel, (Washington, DC: ICS Publications, 1995), L269–to her sister, p. 265.

14.  ibid, vol. 1, trans. Aletheia Kane, General Introduction Major Spiritual Writings, (Washington, DC:  ICS Publications, 1984), Heaven in Faith, 8th day, no. 27, p. 105.

15.  St. John of the Cross, The Collected Works of St. John of the Cross, trans. Kieran Kavanaugh and Otilio Rodriguez, (Washington, DC: ICS Publications, 1991), The Spiritual Canticle, stanza 12, nos. 7-8, pp. 517-18.

16.  St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross, The Collected Works of Edith Stein, vol. 4, The Hidden Life, trans. Waltraut Stein, (Washington, DC: ICS Publications, 1992), III.1, p. 92.

17.  St. Teresa of Avila, vol. one, Life, ch. 35, nos. 13-14, pp. 239-40.

18.  St. Thérèse of Lisieux.

19.  Hans Urs von Balthasar, The Way of the Cross, (New York: Herder and Herder, 1969), 20.

20.  St. John of the Cross, The Sayings of Light and Love, no. 9, p. 86.

21.  St. Teresa of Avila, Spiritual Testimonies, no. 3:1, p. 319.

22.  Bialas, 195.

23.23.  St. Thérèse of Lisieux, St. Thérèse of Lisieux: Her Last Conversations, trans. John Clarke, (Washington, DC: ICS Publications, 1977), Notebook, Sept. 15, no. 2, p. 191.

24.  Bialas, 171.

25.  Blessed Elizabeth of the Trinity, Heaven in Faith, L214–to Abbé Chevignard, p. 179.

26.  Bialas, 227.

27.  Houselander, 130.

28.  St. Teresa of Avila, vol. two, Interior Castle: The Seventh Dwelling Places, ch. 4, no. 8,      p. 446.

29.  Blessed Elizabeth of the Trinity, vol. two, L257–to Madame d’Anthès, p. 241.

30.  St. Bernard of Clairvaux, Sermo 83, 4-6: Opera omnia, Edit. Cisterc. 2  [1958], 300-302.

31.  Romans 8:29.

32.  Galations 2:20.

33.  Bialas, 273.

34.  St. Teresa of Avila, Way, ch. 32, nos. 2, 6-7, pp. 160-62.

35.  St. Bernard of Clairvaux.  Sermo 83.

36.  ibid.

37.  St. John of the Cross, Ascent of Mount Carmel, Bk. II, ch. 7, no. 11, p. 172.

38.  Hans Urs von Balthasar, 26.

39.  St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross, Hidden Life, III.3, p. 101.

40.  St. Bernard of Clairvaux, Sermo in dom. Infro oct. Assumptionis, 14-15: Opera omnia, Edit. Cisterc. 5  [1968], 273-274.

41.  St. Teresa of Avila, Interior Castle: The Seventh Dwelling Places, ch. 4, no. 5, p. 445.

42.  St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross, Hidden Life, III.1, p. 92.

43.  Hans Urs von Balthasar, 24.

44.  St. Bernard of Clairvaux, Sermo in dom. Infro oct. Assumptionis.

45.  ibid.

46.  St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross, Hidden Life, III.2, p. 95.

47.  ibid, III.3, p. 101.

48.  John 10:10.

49.  St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross, vol. 6, The Science of the Cross, trans. Josephine Koeppel (Washington, DC: ICS Publications, 2002), ch. 1, p. 20.

50.  Bialas, 200.

51.  ibid, 204.

52.  Hans Urs von Balthasar, 30.

53.  St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross, Hidden Life, III.1, p. 93.

54.  Bialas, 247.

55.  ibid, 250.

56.  St. John of the Cross, The Dark Night, Bk. II, ch. 6, no. 1, p. 404.