The feast day of St. Theodore Guerin is celebrated on October 3. She is the patron saint of the Diocese of Lafayette, Indiana.
St. Theodore Guérin’s birth name was Anne Thérése. She was born on Oct. 2, 1798 in Etables, France. Her father served in Napoleon’s navy. At the young age of 15 her father was murdered by bandits while traveling home for a visit.
Anne Thérése turned to God in the difficult years following his death. At the age of 25 she entered the Sisters of Providence to serve the poor, sick and dying. Anne Thérése became Sister Theodore. She was asked to lead a small missionary band of Sisters to the United States in Indiana.
Mother Théodore accepted the mission in spite of her fragile health. She could only consume soft, bland food and liquid. She traveled to the Unites States with five other sisters. After surviving a violent storm at sea in the trip Mother Théodore wrote the following:
“What strength the soul draws from prayer! In the midst of a storm, how sweet is the calm it finds in the heart of Jesus. But what comfort is there for those who do not pray?”
Mother Théodore established schools in Indiana and Illinois. She is described as saintly by people who knew her.
Sixteen years after coming to the United States she died. She is buried in the Church of the Immaculate Conception in St. Mary of the Woods, Indiana.
St. Théodore Guérin was beatified on Oct. 25, 1998 by Pope John Paul II.
St. Théodore Guérin was canonized on Oct. 15, 2006 by Pope Benedict XVI.
Quote of St. Theodore Guerin