The Servant of God Anna Tellier
Widow, Third Order
Anna Tellier was born of wealthy aristocratic parents at Pont Andemar in northern France. For many years her father held an important post at the royal court. His wife died at an early age and after that he never saw his daughter without shedding tears so overcome was he at the thought of the child�s loss.
To provide her with a suitable education, he placed Anna in a neighbouring convent of Benedictine sisters, where the little girl grew up in the fear of the Lord. Although friendly and easy-going with the other girls of the institution, she showed a certain gravity of character that was absent in them. She took special delight in hearing the lives of the saints read by one of the sisters. She kept the lessons learned from these lives ever before her mind, and at times she would remind her companions of them.
If it had been left to her, Anna would have stayed with the sisters and have become a religious. But once a young lady, an aunt, who lived alone in the world, desired to have her as a companion; and as her father wished it, she yielded to the aunt�s request.
Soon after that, she once more carried out the wishes of relatives and married a devout young nobleman. However when he died a few years later without leaving her any children, Anna made the decision to devote all her spare time to the service of God. To pre-empt further offers of marriage, she made a vow never again to marry. Then she entered the Third Order of St. Francis, and devoted her time to prayer, works of mercy, and charity. She soon distinguished herself so much among the Tertiaries of the town that in two years she was chosen their prefect.
Now Anna felt obliged to lead a most exemplary life. She dressed so simply that no one would have guessed that she was an aristocrat. Her relatives reproved her severely. But she had a pleasant way of appeasing them, and they themselves declared that if you wanted her to be particularly good to you, you needed only to offend her.
She employed but one maid and kept the simplest kind of household. During the day her bed was beautifully made up, but at night she used nothing but a straw tick. In churches where the Blessed Sacrament was exposed for adoration, she assisted at the devotions in a most edifying manner. When the Blessed Sacrament was carried to the sick, she would go along, and gradually others joined her in this pious practice. She was a thoughtful mother to the poor and the sick. She visited them, nursed them, and used practically all her wealth to help them. It was her special pleasure to take poor ignorant children home with her, to instruct them, conferring on many of them benefits for time and eternity.
Anna Tellier died at forty-five, on October 18, 1676, deeply mourned by all the poor, sadly missed by the members of the Third Order, and honoured as a saint by all the townspeople.
Prayer of the church
(Saturday in Passion Week)
We beseech thee, O Lord, let Thy people who are consecrated
to Thee, advance in the spirit of pious devotion, that, instructed
by the sacred rites, they may abound in the higher gifts the more
pleasing they become in the sight of Thy divine majesty.
Through the same Christ Our Lord Who liveth �and reigneth
and the Holy Spirit, One God, now and forever. Amen
Habig, Marion A., O.F.M., 1959, ed., The Franciscan book of Saints, Franciscan Herald press, Chicago, Illinois
Last edited 13/09/2017 10:13
Web administrator Wayne Benge