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St. Teresa of Avila is a moving and inspiring miniseries that chronicles the life of a nun who played a huge part in a spiritual Reformation. Her actions and life marked her as one of the most powerful women in history, and she had great influence over the church and over the people within her order. This DVD contains three separate discs, each containing episodes that depict the life of St. Teresa. This miniseries tells the story of how she was called by God to reform the Carmelite order that she was in. This was no easy task, and came with unique challenges that threatened to end her mission. However, throughout it all, St. Teresa of Avila had an amazing faith that sustained her, despite the struggles and the confrontation that she faced. She, along with her spiritual leader, St. John of the Cross, brought about great changes within her Carmelite order and deepened her relationship with God. This film brings her story to life in a unique way for viewers to experience and enjoy, as well as learn many lessons from.
St. Teresa of Avila tells the amazing story of a unique and powerful woman. Her story is thrilling and filled with lessons about the power of faith and a sustained hope in Christ.
In 1515, Teresa was born in Avila. Her grandfather was a Jew who had become a Christian, but was condemned by the Spanish Inquisition for supposedly returning to his Jewish heritage. Her mother deeply wanted her to grow up with a faith in Christ, and guided her to love God from an early age. As a young girl, Teresa was utterly fascinated with the saints and did everything in her power to learn more about them and become like them. She even went so far as to run away when she was seven years old so that she might attain martyrdom. From the very beginning, St. Teresa of Avila was passionate and dedicated to her faith in Christ.
When Teresa was just fourteen years of age, her mother died. This left Teresa with a huge hole in her heart, and a longing for a relationship with a maternal figure. This led her to view the Virgin Mary in a whole new light, and this filled the vacancy left by the death of her own mother. Because she no longer had the oversight that she once did, Teresa began to be drawn by the things of the world. She often read worldly fiction novels and became obsessed with her appearance. She started to chase after these things, and was soon sent to live with the Augustinian nuns in Avila in order to become educated. This inspired her interest in the saints once more, and St. Teresa of Avila became focused on her faith again.
Shortly after arriving at the monastery, Teresa began to get very ill. Her health declined, and this brought her to a period of spiritual growth. Because she was extremely sick, she had to rely on God for strength and was given spiritual renewal. She was brought to a very low point, and reached out to God for help. He restored her strength and gave her hope and life once more. During this time, St. Teresa of Avila also learned the true meaning of sin. She said that she felt the depths of sin and the darkness surrounding that begin to fill her, and this terrified. She was left with a healthy fear of sin and desperately wanted to rid herself of all things immoral. This drove her to learn more about truly subjecting herself to Christ, and she was once more brought closer in her relationship with him because of this.
In 1535, she entered into the Carmelite order and found a life quite different from what she imagined. Within this order, the people had strict rules and almost no actions to back up their words. She was disheartened at what she saw and disappointed at the lack of true faith within the monastery. St. Teresa of Avila recognized very early on that religion was about a relationship with Christ and about living a life that reflected this. No matter how much you say, it does not matter if you do not have the actions to reinforce this. She became inspired to go to other monasteries and help inspire spiritual reformation throughout these.
She brought her idea to a new order, and was granted permission to begin a reform of sorts there. She enlisted help from St. John of the Cross and Anthony of Jesus, as they thought the same things she did about spirituality and a relationship with Christ. Through their teaching, preaching, and the way they lived their lives, these three inspired those around them to develop a better relationship with Christ and start living up to their words. However, St. Teresa of Avila was met with much confrontation by those who did not agree with her and did not want to change their ways. A series of persecutions began, and she was slowly driven out of the convents and was no longer welcome. This greatly saddened her, and she was told to leave.
Despite this opposition, St. Teresa of Avila continued her work and started three more of her own convents. Because she was no longer welcome in existing convents, she decided to begin her own. This proved to be quite successful and shows just how wildly determined she was. Her ideas were radical at the time, and took many people by surprise. However, though she was met with persecution and oftentimes ridicule, Teresa did not give up. She knew deep within her that Christ had commissioned her to change the world and become a reformer. Because of this, she stuck by her words and her original plan and did not give up. This DVD gives viewers an intimate look into the life and actions of St. Teresa of Avila.
This 3 disc set highlights the great life of one of the most amazing woman in history, St Teresa of Avila.
Very slow film. Be prepared to break this up over the course of days. But well worth it. The audio is very impressive with surround sound. The producers thought through the sound better than current day action films. (Posted on 5/16/15)