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Friday, July 1, 2011
Cistercian Nun Sister Teresa - 84 years of Cloistered Life !
Sister Teresa, a Cloistered Nun in Spain, now holds the World Record for cloistered life, 84 Years! Sister entered the convent the day Pope Benedict XVI was born. You have to wonder how many lives have been changed by the prayers of this holy woman.
GUADALAJARA, Spain, - She entered the Cistercian Buenafuente del Sistal Convent the day that Joseph Ratzinger (now Benedict XVI) was born, and today Sister Teresa is 103 years old and the world's record holder for having lived the longest as a cloistered nun.
After 84 years as a cloistered nun, Sister Teresa says that the greatest gift she has received has been prayer: "Without it, one cannot sustain oneself. I never cease repeating: 'Thank you, forgive. Thank you, forgive.'"
The nun is one of 10 cloistered nuns profiled in the Spanish-language book "¿Qué hace una chica como tú en un sitio como éste?" (What's a Girl Like You Doing in a Place Like This?). In the book, author Jesús Garcia brings to light the secluded world of cloistered nuns by getting to know what life is like behind the grail, and what inspired them to join.
Sister Teresa's story began as young girl living in Alava, Spain. She was known then as Valeria, and she was happy with her life on the family farm. "We were in the field from morning 'til night, working, but we were happy," she said.
The eldest of seven children, her father saw how hard Valeria and her younger sister worked and he wanted a different life for them. "Thinking nuns didn’t work, [my father] would say to my sister and me: 'Wouldn’t you like to be nuns?'" she recalls.
"I didn’t like nuns," she continued, "given how comfortable I was at home, [but] to please my father, [I] prayed to the patroness of Vitoria and asked her to give me a vocation. And did she give me one!"
You can read the rest of the story out of ZENIT HERE !
* above image: Cistercian Buenafuente del Sistal Convent