“Our catechesis today deals with Saint Teresa of Avila,the great sixteenth-century Carmelite reformer proclaimed a Doctor ofthe Church by Pope Paul VI. Teresa entered the Carmel in Avila at theage of twenty. Maturing in the spiritual life, she embraced the idealof a renewal of her Order and with the support of Saint John of theCross she founded a chain of reformed Carmels throughout Spain. Herhighly influential writings, which include the Autobiography, The Wayof Perfection and The Interior Castle, reveal her profoundchristocentric spirituality and her breadth of human experience.Teresa considered the evangelical and human virtues the basis of anauthentic Christian life. She identified deeply with Christ in hishumanity and stressed the importance of contemplation of his Passionand of his real presence in the Eucharist. Shepresents prayer as an intimate friendship with Christ leading to anever greater union of love with the Blessed Trinity. In her life andin her death Teresa embodied an unconditional love for the Church.May the example and prayers of Saint Teresa of Avila inspire us togreater fidelity to prayer and, through prayer, to greater love forthe Lord and his Church, and more perfect charity towards ourbrothers and sisters."