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Ms A 85v

Thérèse's Explanation of the Coat of Arms She Designed and Placed at the End of Manuscript A


The blazon JHS is the one Jesus deigned to bring as a dowry to his poor little spouse. The orphan of Beresina became Thérèse of the CHILD JESUS and the HOLY FACE— these are her titles of nobil­ity, her wealth, and her hope. The vine that divides the shield in two is again [5]the image of Him who deigned to say to us: "I am the vine and, you are the branches, I want you to bear much fruit. The two branches surrounding the Holy Face and the little Jesus are the image of Thérèse herself who had only one desire: that of offering herself as a little cluster of grapes to refresh the child Jesus, to amuse Him and let herself be pressed by Him according to [10]his whims, as well as to be able to quench the ardent thirst He felt dur­ing his passion. The harp again represents Thérèse who wanted to sing eternally melodies of love to Jesus.

The blazon FMT is that of Marie-Françoise-­Thérèse, the little flower of the Holy Virgin, thus this little flower is represented re­ceiving the beneficial rays of the Gentle Morning Star. The verdant land represents [15]the blessed family in whose heart the little flower grew up; further away is seen a mountain that symbolizes Carmel. On her coat of arms, Thérèse chose this blessed spot to present the flaming dart of love that was to merit for her the palm of martyrdom until she could truly shed her blood for Him whom she loves. For, in order to respond to all the love of [20] Jesus she would desire to do for Him what He did for her ... but Thérèse is aware that she is only a weak reed, thus she has put one on her blazon. The luminous tri­angle represents the Adorable Trinity who never ceases to bestow its inestimable gifts on little Thérèse's soul, thus she will always gratefully remember this motto: 'Love is repaid by Love alone. "



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