Writing Trusting God with St. Therese, I have purchased or checked out from the library several book about the saint that I had not read before. I have also revisited some old favorites. There are countless books about Therese, but not all are of the same quality or focus. Here are some of my favorites, in brief. Throughout this year, I hope to give you more detailed critiques of them and others.
I Believe in Love
I Believe in Love: A Personal Retreat Based on the Teaching of St. Therese of Lisieux by Fr. Jean C. J. d’Elbee is by far my favorite book on Therese. In fact, it’s one of my favorite books of all time. I have given this book away twice before. I just received it for Christmas for the third time and am rereading it.
The point that struck me most on my last reading was that we shouldn’t say, “I’m striving to love God.” Instead, we should simply say, “I love God.” Love is a matter of the will. If we truly will to love, we achieve love.
The Way of Trust and Love
A newer book with a similar theme is The Way of Trust and Love: A Retreat Guided by St. Therese of Lisieux by Fr. Jacques Philippe. I recommend any book by Jacques Philippe. He is masterful at presenting traditional spiritual truths to a 21st century audience.
It was reading The Way of Trust and Love that set me firmly on the way to trusting God.
The Story of a Life
The Story of a Life: St. Therese of Lisieux was written by Guy Gaucher, the Bishop of Lisieux. This book is known as the definitive biography of St. Therese. If you have read Therese’s Story of a Soul and desire to dig dipper into the events of her life, this is the book I recommend.
Unlike some “studies” of St. Therese that are organized by theme, Gaucher’s book is chronological. This makes it easy to follow. You could read it alongside Therese’s writings to help illuminate them.
The Passion of St. Therese of Lisieux
Also by Bishop Guy Gaucher, The Passion of St. Therese deals with the saint’s final illness and death. Here you will learn more details that did not make it into Gaucher’s full biography. It was actually written over a decade earlier, however.
This one is arranged by theme, so it does cover some of the same time period over and over from different perspectives. But if you ever thought that Therese did not really suffer much or was just a sappy saint, The Passion of St. Therese of Lisiuex will convince you otherwise!
Therese and Lisieux
Therese and Lisieux by Pierre Descouvemont and Helmuth Nils Loose is a wonderful coffee-table book for devotees. You can find most of the photos in this book online (I have several of them on my Pinterest Board of St. Therese). But seeing them online does not compare, in my opinion, to holding a book of them in your hands.
The photos are interspersed with biography and quotes from Therese’s writings.
Share with us: What is your favorite book about St. Therese? Tell us why you like it so much.