Human Experience

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Human Experience
Explore the claim that women can be models of faith/faithful disciples.
St Therese of Lisieux- She felt an early call to religious life, and overcoming various obstacles, in 1888
at the early age of 15, became a nun and joined two of her older sisters in the cloistered Carmelite
community of Lisieux, Normandy. After nine years as a Carmelite religious, having fulfilled various
offices such as sacristan and assistant to the novice mistress, and having spent the last eighteen
months in Carmel in a night of faith, she died of tuberculosis at the age of 24. Thérèse lived a hidden
life and "wanted to be unknown". She left letters, poems, religious plays, prayers, and her last
conversations were recorded by her sisters. Thérèse herself said on her death-bed, "I only love
simplicity. I have a horror of pretence", and she spoke out against some of the Lives of saints written
in her day, "We should not say improbable things, or things we do not know. We must see their real,
and not their imagined lives." The depth of her spirituality, of which she said, "my way is all
confidence and love," has inspired many believers. In the face of her littleness and nothingness, she
trusted in God to be her sanctity. She wanted to go to heaven by an entirely new little way. "I wanted
to find an elevator that would raise me to Jesus." The elevator, she wrote, would be the arms of
Jesus lifting her in all her littleness.
St Catherine of Sienna- Saint Catherine of Siena, T.O.S.D, (25 March 1347 in Siena ­ 29 April 1380 in
Rome) was a tertiary of the Dominican Order, and a Scholastic philosopher and theologian. She also
worked to bring the papacy of Gregory XI back to Rome from its displacement in France, and to
establish peace among the Italian city-states. A vision of St. Dominic strengthened her but her wish to
join his Order was no comfort to her mother, who took her daughter with her to the baths in Bagno
Vignoni to improve her health. Soon she fell seriously ill with violent rash, fever and pain, which
conveniently made her mother accept her wish to join the "Mantellate", the local association of
Dominican tertiary Sisters. Within days, Catherine seemed entirely restored, rose from bed and
donned the black and white habit of the Third Order of St. Dominic. The Mantellate taught Catherine
how to read, and she lived in almost total silence and solitude in the family home. By staying in their
midst, she could live out her rejection of them more strongly. She did not want their food, referring
to the table laid for her in Heaven with her real family.
Blessed Mother Theresa- On 10 September 1946, Teresa experienced what she later described as
"the call within the call". "I was to leave the convent and help the poor while living among them. It
was an order. To fail would have been to break the faith." She began her missionary work with the
poor in 1948, replacing her traditional Loreto habit with a simple white cotton sari decorated with a
blue border. Mother Teresa adopted Indian citizenship, spent a few months in Patna to receive a
basic medical training in the Holy Family Hospital and then ventured out into the slums. Initially she
started a school in Motijhil (Calcutta); soon she started tending to the needs of the destitute and
starving. In the beginning of 1949 she was joined in her effort by a group of young women and laid
the foundations to create a new religious community helping the "poorest among the poor". In 1952
Mother Teresa opened the first Home for the Dying in space made available by the city of Calcutta.
With the help of Indian officials she converted an abandoned Hindu temple into the Kalighat Home for
the Dying, a free hospice for the poor. She renamed it Kalighat, the Home of the Pure Heart (Nirmal
Hriday). Those brought to the home received medical attention and were afforded the opportunity
to die with dignity, according to the rituals of their faith. "A beautiful death," she said, "is for people

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Mother Teresa soon opened a home
for those suffering from Hansen's disease, commonly known as leprosy, and called the hospice Shanti
Nagar (City of Peace). The Missionaries of Charity also established several leprosy outreach clinics
throughout Calcutta, providing medication, bandages and food. As the Missionaries of Charity took in
increasing numbers of lost children, Mother Teresa felt the need to create a home for them.…read more

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Within this particular context, the term ecumenism
refers to the idea of a Christian unity in the literal meaning: that there should be a single Christian
A secular state is a concept of secularism, whereby a state or country purports to be officially neutral
in matters of religion, supporting neither religion nor irreligion. A secular state also claims to treat all
its citizens equally regardless of religion, and claims to avoid preferential treatment for a citizen from
a particular religion/nonreligion over other religions/nonreligion.…read more

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Pizarro onward.
Religious Initiation Ceremonies
The liturgy of baptism in the Catholic, Eastern Orthodox, Lutheran, Anglican, and Methodist traditions
makes clear reference to baptism as not only a symbolic burial and resurrection, but an actual
supernatural transformation, one that draws parallels to the experience of Noah and the passage of
the Israelites through the Red Sea divided by Moses. Thus, baptism is literally and symbolically not
only cleansing, but also dying and rising again with Christ.…read more


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