St. Teresa of Avila on detachment from relatives

St. Teresa says that a nun who is unwilling to follow her Rule is free to leave, but that any nun in her House must not seek consolation in relatives:

“here if some relatives are allowed to visit, it is that they might find relieve by being with us. But the nun who desires to see them for her own consolation, if these relatives are not spiritual persons, should consider herself imperfect. She ought to believe that she is not detached, not healthy; she will not possess freedom of spirit; she will not possess complete peace” (Way of Perfection, Ch. 8, para. 3).

She says that a nun who is overly attached to her family should be made to avoid them until she achieves detachments.

“When it is clear that she considers these visits a cross, it will be all right for her to see them, for then she will be of benefit to her relatives and not be harmed herself” (Way of Perfection, Ch. 8, para. 4).

She says that relatives can be of little help to each other in spiritual growth:

“But I know through my own experience as well as that of others that in time of trial my relatives helped me least. It was the servants of God who helped em. By relatives I do not mean parents, for parents very seldom fail to help their children, and it is right fo rus to console them in their need” (Way of Perfection, Ch. 9, para. 3).

One response to “St. Teresa of Avila on detachment from relatives

  1. Another Joy comment not related to the post (comment related to art):

    My big hobby right now is painting miniature figurines. The scale I work on is 28mm, but anything small is fine with me.

    So far I’ve painted only fantasy miniatures, but I have a Holy Family nativity set that’s at about twice my usual scale I’m going to do once I’ve practiced plenty on the fantasy figs, and have honed my skills for the more important job.

    On that note, I’d like to find some online retailer(s) that sell unpainted religious figures that are finely sculpted. Searches so far have not provided anything very good. The figures that come unpainted are either too large (garden statues and church statues), or crudely sculpted. The very good sculpts are only sold painted, or are of some nice display material, like carved wood, sculpted marble, or the like. I’m looking for something pewter or resin. Plaster and ceramic can’t usually be cast with fine enough detail, and are too large, anyway.

    Do you think you (or your blog readers) might be willing to help me tackle this task?

    The Holy Family figures I have are sculpted by Thunderbolt Mountain miniatures, which produces mainly fantasy figures, but branched out to the religious figs as a Christmas special. Here’s the link. It will give you an idea of the kind of product I’m looking for.


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