July 6, Bl Mary Theresa (Maria Teresa) Ledóchowska

July 6
Obligatory memorial

Mary Theresa was born on 29 April 1863 in Loosdorf in Austria. She grew up in a deeply religious home. At 27, she gave up her post of lady-in-waiting, her literary and organisational talents and dedicated herself to the work of the African missions. He made her profession as the first member of the missionary Sodality of St Peter Claver, which she had founded. She died on 6 July  1922 in Rome and was buried there. He is the patroness saint of the missions in Poland.

Common of Virgins.

[PDF Version]



From the apostolic writing of Pope Paul VI
(AAS 68 [1976], p. 250-252)
Her Life is a Meaningful Example of the Operation of God’s Love

The Second Vatican Council’s Decree on the Missionary Activity of the Church states that “the pilgrim Church is missionary by her very nature.” The missionary service of the Church flows from the source of love, “or charity of God the Father,” who wishes that all man were saved. God’s plan of salvation was fulfilled in sending in the world of the Only-Begotten Son, through whom God decided to “intervene in human history in a way both new and final,” and in the Descent of the Holy Spirit. For He “instills into the hearts of the faithful the same mission spirit which impelled Christ Himself.” The Church, on the other hand, by Christ’s will was called to undertake her principal task – it lasts everywhere and always and cannot be changed or diminish its intensity, because it belongs to the nature of the Church and her mission.

The apostolic task in question became the inspiration of the entire life of the Venerable Mary Theresa Ledóchowska so that she was ready to set an excellent example of women’s cooperation in the missionary work of the Church. Christ aroused in her the desire of serving Him with an undivided heart. He redeemed and sanctified man through his obedience carried to far as the death on the cross. He called Mary Theresa so that she may, for the love of Him, serve Him in His brothers, especially those most deserted and unhappy – the slaves of Africa. Mary Theresa heard God’s call and, completely docile to God’s will, enraptured toward Him by love, followed this call generously and consistently.

Mary Theresa was ahead of her time, so unfavourable to the apostleship of women. He had to overcome many an obstacle and prejudice to be able to devote herself to apostleship and editing and publishing. He wandered all Europe, spreading the missionary activity, publishing journals in various languages and founding publishing houses. God blessed her work that kept on growing and strengthening. He wisely and passionately ran the Sodality of St Peter Claver that she had founded, thanks to which God’s proximity could be sensed better.

The mystery of love was fulfilled in Mary Theresa’s death on 6 July 1922. The Catholics of Africa bewailed the departure of their mother, as they used to call her, but by means of the institute founded by her and living according to her spirit, until today they have not ceased to experience the grandeur and power of this love that possessed her. However, not only the peoples of Africa remember and admire Mary Theresa, but the entire Church, as the telling example of her life constitutes the good of more than one continent. By her life, God showed the Church, as well as all the people of good will, what love of one person can achieve, provided he or she has completely surrendered to God, and through Him, to all suffering humanity.[1]

RESPONSORY Mk 16:15-16; John 3:5

Go into the whole world and proclaim the gospel to every creature.
Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved.

No one can enter the kingdom of God without being born of water and Spirit.
 Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved.


O God,
thanks to your grace Blessed Mary Theresa brought help to the preachers of your Gospel,
grant  through her intercession that all nations may know you, the true God, and your Son, Jesus Christ.
Who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.

[1] Translated by DChojnacki (2016).



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