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Saint Teresa of Avila 1515 - 1582
 
Passionate lover of God, she reformed her Order in the spirit of its original Carmelite simplicity and fervour. With her characteristic determination, she overcame countless obstacles in founding 17 convents in Spain. Her communities are now in 90 countries round the world.
 
The many facets of her vivacious personality ranged from wisdom, warmth and wit in relationships to astuteness in business concerns. Her books on the inner life are spiritual classics and reveal her as an outstanding teacher on prayer. She set no store on the spiritual phenomenon which she experienced herself but emphasised the fact that real holiness is to be united with God in his will.