What do St. John of the Cross, St. Teresa of Avila and St. Therese of Lisieux have to offer sexual abuse victims, especially those abused by clergy, religious or lay ministers of the Catholic Church?
It turns out, these three Doctors of the Church and Carmelite Mystics can help us find deep spiritual healing and a simple, yet practical way to continue practicing our Catholic faith. If you or someone you know struggles with going to Mass or participating in the sacraments, here are some ideas, gathered from the lives of these saints, to help make living your faith both authentic and healing.
Such topics as: Healing from spiritually related Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, temptations to despair, and the blessings God will give to those who "take up their cross," are all covered in this free online resource.
Learn what the great Carmelite Mystics have to say about the difficulties and blessings of the spiritual life, and be renewed in your faith. These articles and prayers were put together by Carrie Bucalo, a sexual abuse survivor, once Carmelte nun, and now Catholic wife, mother and writer.
If you have any questions, feel free to contact Carrie at: firstname.lastname@example.org. All comments and questions are welcome.
(The painting below is dedicated to all those who find it difficult to look at the face of Christ, due to being sexually abused by someone who represented God. Our Blessed Mother and the saints will show us how to turn to Him once again with faith and with love.)
PRAYER TO BEGIN THE SPIRITUAL JOURNEY OF HEALING
O God of love, I turn to you now and ask you to be with me and to give me courage to embark on the spiritual journey of healing. I don’t want to do this alone. I believe that you are here with me now. You offer me your help, and it is up to me to accept it. Sometimes I feel my heart is too closed to let you in, but even if it is open only a little I trust that you will make of it a perfect opportunity for your grace and your healing power to work in my life. I will give you what I can, and I trust that you will do the rest. Amen.
“Come, Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful and enkindle in them the fire of your love…
Send forth your spirit, and they shall be created, and you shall renew the face of the earth.
Oh, God, who by the light of the Holy Spirit did instruct the hearts of your faithful. Grant that by the same Holy Spirit, we may be truly wise and ever rejoice in his consolations, through Christ, Our Lord. Amen.”