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Thousands flock to greet St Therese's relics

Remains of 'The Little Flower' go on tour

An image of St Therese of Lisieux, "The Little Flower" (Wikimedia Commons) An image of St Therese of Lisieux, "The Little Flower" (Wikimedia Commons)
  • ucanews.com reporter, Laoag City
  • Philippines
  • January 3, 2013
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Thousands of Catholics carrying red roses welcomed the relics of St Therese of the Child Jesus in the province of Ilocos Norte today.
 
Bishop Renato Mayugba of Laoag diocese said the visit is "significant" and an opportunity to invite young people to become missionaries of the Church.
 
The relics, which are bone fragments of the saint housed in a special reliquary, arrived in the Philippines on December 15 for a four-month tour that will include visits to 48 archdioceses and dioceses throughout the country.
 
The relics traveled from the Basilica of St Therese in Lisieux, France. 
 
This is the third time the pilgrim relics have visited the Philippines. The first two visits in 2000 and 2008 were reportedly marked with miracles and thousands of devotees gathering to pray.
  
St Thérèse of Lisieux, or St Thérèse of the Child Jesus, was a French Carmelite nun who felt an early call to religious life. She overcame various obstacles  to become a nun in 1888 at the young age of 15, and joined two of her elder sisters in the cloistered Carmelite community of Lisieux, Normandy. 
 
After nine years as a Carmelite nun, she died of tuberculosis at the age of 24.
 
During the celebration of the relic's arrival, Bishop Mayugba said anyone can become a saint if he or she does "what you are supposed to do."

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