As a child, the patron saint of pilots and people with AIDS shared a room with a large wire cage housing finches and canaries. She sought entry into the convent as early as age 9, following her sister, but was deemed too young. At 24, Thérèse had achieved her monastic dream — that’s her portraying Joan of Arc in a convent pageant — but lay so soon on her deathbed; a flock of birds landed on the infirmary window and sang her away. When the body of the “Little Flower,” as she called herself, was exhumed many years later, the room filled with the scent of violets. In her hand was a sprig of palm, still fresh.
[Personal note: Heaven 24/7 started three years ago, with the saint story republished above. Today there are thousands of readers, all thanks to kind patrons who keep the site’s lights on. The archive is getting pretty big, might be time to start compiling a book…]