St. Teresa of Avila

In the February 2 editon of the National Catholic Register I was pleased to read an article by Cindy Wooden that Pope Benedict XVI is going to focus on women doctors of the church for his general audience.  I think the world needs to see the role of women in the Catholic church, but I think we as Catholics, also need to be reminded.  Especially women.
I admit to not knowing much about St. Teresa of Avila, the 16th century (1515-1582) mystic and doctor of the church.  Teresa was canonized in 1622.  Her feast day is October 15 and she is the patron saint of headache and heart attack sufferers.  I got out my trusty Voices of the Saints by Bert Ghezzi and I found this story about her:
A friend was once surprised to find St. Teresa gorging herself on a partridge, "What would people think?" she asked.  "Let them think whatever they want," said Teresa.  "There's a time for penance, and there's a time for partridge."
I have found my kindred spirit!  I try to pray daily, read scripture and do the best I can towards other people, but every once in a while I gotta have some partridge!
My partridge is not necessarily food.  It's shopping.  I might get a longing for a piece of jewelry or lately it's been e-books.  My family gave me Barnes & Noble gift cards for Christmas.  I only loaded one gift card at a time so I would pace myself.  I peruse my wishlist, looking at the prices so that I get the most bang for my gifted buck.  Before the storm hit, I got twelve freebies and only purchased two books:  The Mass by Archbishop Donald W. Wuerl and a western entitled A Congregation of Jackals by S. Craig Zahler.  Now that's balance!
Teresa shows that we do need balance in our life.  In her day, life was a lot simpler, so her indulgence was food.  We live in a world of materialism that's continually in our face.  Not only are our distractions food, but the "must-haves" which can be anything from the latest electronics to what we wear.
I struggle with balance a lot.  Sometimes the scales tip more toward Our Lord and I'm oblivious to the stuff around me.  Then other times, well, let's just say I'm grateful for all those gift cards!

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