The distance was short between les Buissonets and Carmel. But between these two places where people lived, what a contrast! From a warm nest where she was not the spoiled child but the pampered youngest child, Thérèse experienced in the convent the austere setting where a life of prayer, silence and solitude with God and for God would take place in the middle of a community of twenty-six sisters. There was a great continuity in the French Carmels since the 17th century: the influence of this century and of Cardinal de Bérulle, strict observance and fastidious enclosure codified by a thousand little customs. The spiritual presence of Saint Teresa of Avila, “our seraphic Mother” they said, the founder from among all others whose spirit and constitutions were jealously guarded as the most precious of legacies. Interaction nevertheless with the evolution of Catholicism in France, the spirit of asceticism and reparation had somewhat taken over.  

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