"God gave me a father and mother more worthy of heaven than of earth."
—Saint Thérèse of Lisieux
The recent, and unprecedented, canonization by Pope Francis of a husband and wife, Louis and Zélie Martin, the parents of Saint Thérèse, has stirred a great interest in this extraordinary family. This work, by the highly regarded expert on the Martin family, Father Stéphane-Joseph Piat, O.F.M, is the definitive biography of this amazing family of saints.
Saint Thérèse, a Doctor of the Church, wrote in her classic spiritual biography, Story of a Soul, how important her family life was in setting the foundation for her spiritual life. She grew up in a close family, where the deep love of parents and children for God, neighbor, and each other was the very heart of their home and family life.
This family of saints, who lived in the late 1800s and early 1900s, might appear from their quaint photographs to have lived a relatively serene and smooth path to sainthood, untarnished by modern problems. But, as this book shows, the reality is quite the opposite. They suffered from the loss of four children, the failure of a family business, and the death of Zélie, at forty-five, to breast cancer.
The secret to their happiness then is the secret to our happiness now-- unfailing love made possible by boundless faith in God. All the challenges the Martins faced, great and small, were met with a profound trust in Divine Providence.
Illustrated with 8 pages of photographs
The correct attribution for the icon art on the cover of the book is © Ss. Louis & Zelie Martin with St. Therese of Lisieux & Siblings,
"For the first time in two millennia, an entry in the liturgical books will now read, 'Saints Louis and Zélie Martin, Spouses'. A married couple, a man and a woman, who were the parents of a saint, the Little Flower, and in whose married life mutual sanctification took place by cooperation with God's grace."
— George Weigel, from the Afterword
"Saints Louis and Zélie Martin are heroic role models for us striving for sanctity in our vocation of modern-day parenthood. Fr. Piat has painted a vivid family portrait, a beautiful message of hope, and a reminder to rely always on God's abundant grace in the midst of life's trials and triumphs."
— Lisa Hendey, Founder, CatholicMom.com
"Father Piat presents an inspiring family of faith, humbly striving to grow in holiness through devotion to Holy Scripture, the Church, and her sacraments."
— Marcus Grodi, EWTN Host, The Journey Home