VIE-27 Life of St Therese in pictures
The refusal by a poor man - unused sketch.

During the walks I took with Papa, he loved to have me bring alms to the poor we met on the way. On one occasion we met a poor man who was dragging himself along painfully on crutches. I went up to give him a coin. He looked at me with a sad smile and refused my offering since he felt he wasn’t poor enough to accept alms. I cannot express the feeling that went through my heart. I wanted to console this man and instead I had given him pain or so I thought. The poor invalid undoubtedly guessed at what was passing through my mind, for I saw him turn around and smile at me. Papa had just bought me a little cake, and I had an intense desire to give it to him, but I didn’t dare. However, I really wanted to give him something he couldn’t refuse, so great was the sympathy I felt toward him. I remembered having heard that on our First Communion Day we can obtain whatever we ask for, and this thought greatly consoled me. Although I was only six years old at this time, I said: “I’ll pray for this poor man the day of my First Communion.” I kept my promise five years later, and I hope God answered the prayer He inspired me to direct to Him in favor of one of His suffering members. Ms A 15 r°



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