Zenit.org is reporting that the parents of one of the world’s most beloved saints will be canonized during the 2015 Synod on the Family.
“Thanks be to God in October two spouses, parents of Saint Therese of Lisieux, will be canonized,” said Cardinal Angelo Amato, Prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of the Saints. “Saints are not only priests and nuns, but also lay people.”
Louis and Zelie were married in Alencon, France in 1858 and lived as celibates for the first year of their marriage until a confessor encouraged them to raise children who would grow up to praise God. They obeyed, and parented nine children, five of whom entered religious life.
Thanks to the more than 200 letters written by Zelie during her lifetime, we know that the family’s daily life revolved around their faith beginning with Daily Mass at 5:30 a.m., daily recitation of the Angelus and Vespers, Sundays devoted to worship and the prescribed fasting during Lent and Advent.
The Martin family also opened their home to the poor, visited the elderly, and made it a point to teach their daughters to treat the underprivileged as equals.
Although they lived comfortably, thanks in part to Zelie’s prosperous business creating the world-renowned Alencon lace, they also suffered greatly over the loss of four children.
Loving and devout parents, they were once described by St.Therese as being “more worthy of heaven than of earth.”
Zelie Martin died in 1877 at the age of 45 from cancer. Louis and his daughters moved to Lisieux where four of his daughters entered Carmel. He died in 1894.
Benedict XVI beatified the couple on October 19, 2008.
More details about the canonization will be forthcoming.
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