of S. Teresa of Jesus
of the Order
of our Lady of Carmel
1. Stephany of the Apostles. —
1. Stephany of the Apostles. —
It came to pass at this time
that we had to give the habit
to a lay sister
— Sister Stephany of the Apostles — 
in the monastery of the Conception,
I may speak hereafter of her vocation,
of a different condition of life
— she was but a peasant —
yet, because of the great graces
which God wrought in her,
for the honour of His Majesty,
that I should make some record of her.
When she (Sister Stephanie) 
was to take the habit,
was to take the habit,
— for that was the name
of this beloved of our Lord —
came to the ceremony with her grandmother,
the mother of her bridegroom. 
She conceived a very great liking;
for the monastery,
and thought that our Lord was better
served by the nuns,
because they were
few in number and poor.
Still she had not at this time
made up her mind
to give up her bridegroom,
and he it was,
as I said before,
who held her back the most.
2. Dona Casilda enters into herself. —
that she was accustomed,
before she was betrothed,
to spend a certain time in prayer,
for her mother,
in her goodness and saintliness,
had thus brought her up
with her brother and sisters.
From the time they were seven years old
she used to
take them with her
into her oratory at certain hours, and
teach them how to meditate
on the Passion of our Lord.
She made them go often to confession,
she saw her good desires
to bring them up for God
so amply rewarded.
She has told me herself
that she used to
- offer up her children to God, and
- implore Him to take them
out of the world,
for she was no longer deluded
as to the scanty esteem
in which it should be held.
I think at times
how they will thank their mother
- they see themselves
in the fruition of everlasting bliss,
- that it was she who helped them;
and I think too,
of her accidental joy in seeing them,
how different it will be
with those fathers and mothers
who have not brought up their children
as children of God
— and they are more His than theirs —
when they all meet together,
both the one and
the other, in hell,
uttering curses, hopelessly lost.
3. Attempts to become a nun. —
3. To return to my story.
When Dona Casilda saw
that even saying the rosary
was no longer a pleasure to her
- feared that she might become
even worse and worse, and
- thought she saw clearly
that by coming to this house
she could make her salvation certain.
She therefore made up her mind altogether,
and one morning she and her sister
came here with their mother,
and, as it happened,
all entered the monastery,
but without any suspicion
that she was going to do what she did.
When she found herself inside
no one would thrust her out.
She cried so earnestly
that she might be left, and
she used such words
as astonished everybody.
though in her heart glad,
- was afraid of her kindred, and
- would not have her remain,
lest it should be said
that she was doing this by her persuasion;
the prioress, also, was of the same mind, 
- looked on her as a child, and
- thought that there ought to be
a longer trial of her vocation.
This was in the morning ;
to remain there till the evening, and
for her confessor and
for the Father Master Fray Domingo,
a Dominican, 
who was mine,
of whom I spoke in the beginning,
but I was not there at the time myself.
- saw at once
that this was the work
of the Spirit of God, and
- gave her great help,
while having much to bear with
at the hand of her kindred.
So indeed ought all men to do
who pretend to serve God,
when they see a soul
called by Him,
nor must they be led
by the prudence of men.
He promised his help to her
for her coming back another day.
She went away this time,
but after earnest importunities,
lest they should blame her mother.
Her good desires continued
even to grow stronger.
4. Her device to gain an entrance
into the monastery. —
Her mother began to speak privately
to her kindred,
and the secret was kept
from coming to the knowledge
of the bridegroom.
They spoke of it all as childishness,
and said she must wait
till she became of age,
for she was not yet twelve years old.
She replied to this by saying,
as they thought her old enough
to be married and
left in the world,
how came it
that they did not find her old enough
to give herself to God .
She spoke in such a way
as made it plain
it was not she herself who was speaking.
The matter could not be kept so secret
as to escape the knowledge
of the bridegroom.
When she found
that he was aware of it
she did not think it well to wait for him,
on the feast of the Conception,
when in the house of her grandmother,
who was also her mother-in- law,
who knew nothing of the matter,
she asked her to let her go for a walk
with her governess.
to please her
gave her consent,
and she went out in a carriage
with her servants.
To one of them she
- gave some money, and
- asked him to wait for her
at the gate of this monastery
with a bundle of faggots, and
- had herself driven about in such a way
that they brought her by the house.
When she had come in front of the gate
- told her servants to ask at the wicket
for a goblet of water
without saying for whom, and
- descended quickly from the carriage;
they said the water would be
brought to her,
but she would not have it so.
The faggots were already there,
and she bade her people
tell them in the monastery
to come to the door for them.
She stood close by the faggots, and
when the door opened
throwing her arms around our Lady,
weeping, and praying the prioress
not to send her away.
5. Casilda's relatives. —
The servants raised a loud cry,
and knocked violently at the door.
She went to the grating
to speak to them,
- that nothing should ever
make her come out,
- they must go and tell her mother.
who were in attendance upon her
made pitiful lamentations,
but nothing moved her.
when she was told of it,
would go at once to the monastery.
neither she herself,
nor an uncle, 
nor the bridegroom himself,
who, when he came,
found means to converse much
with her at the grating,
did anything else
but increase her distress
when they were with her, and
leave her more determined than before.
The bridegroom said to her,
after many piteous complainings,
that she could serve God more
by giving alms;
whereupon she bade him,
by way of reply,
give alms himself.
In answer to everything else from him
- that she was under greater obligations
to work out her own salvation,
- that she knew herself to be weak,
and could not save herself
amid the dangers of the world;
- that he had no reason to complain of her,
for she had left him only for God,
- that she did him no wrong thereby.
When she saw
that he was not satisfied
she arose and left him.
He made no impression whatever upon her;
she was on the whole disgusted with him;
for the temptations and annoyances
which Satan stirs up
become rather a help to that soul
to whom God sends the light of the truth.
It is His Majesty Himself
who is fighting on its behalf.
It was so visibly now,
for it did not seem
as if Casilda, herself,
were the speaker.
6. She is removed by force
from the monastery.—
When the bridegroom and her kindred saw
how little influence they had
to bring her out with her own consent
they took means to drag her out by force,
so they procured an order from the king,
in virtue of which they could
take her out and
restore her to her liberty.
During her stay in the monastery,
from the feast of the Conception
to that of the Innocents,
when they took her away,
she never wore the habit,
but she observed
all the rules of the house
as it she had been clothed,
and that with the greatest joy.
On that day
they carried her
into the house of a nobleman,
for the officers of justice came for her.
She wept grievously
as they were taking her away,
- asking them why they tormented her, and
- saying that they would gain nothing
by what they were doing.
Religious, as well as others,
now talked earnestly to her:
some thought her conduct childish,
and others wished her
to retain her rank in the world.
I should become very tedious
if I were to recount
- all the discussions that took place, and
- how she extricated herself out of them all.
They were amazed at the things she said.
When they saw
that they could not influence her
they took her to her mother's house,
there to be kept for a time.
Her mother was weary of so much trouble,
and gave her no help whatever:
on the contrary,
she seemed to be against her.
It may be
that her mother was only trying her;
at least, she told me so afterwards,
and she is so saintly
that whatever she says
is to be believed.
However, the child did not so understand her.
Her confessor also
was extremely opposed to her,
so that she had no help
in God, and
in a young woman in her mother's service
who consoled her. 
7. The family wish her
to enter another order. —
Thus she lived
in great weariness and distress
till she was twelve years old:
then she found it was proposed,
now that they could not
hinder her profession,
to make her enter the monastery
in which her sister was,
because it was not so severe.
She, when she saw this,
determined to find some means or other
for carrying out her resolution,
and accordingly one day,
going with her mother to Mass,
while the latter went
into the confessional in the church,
she asked her governess
to go and request one of the fathers
to say mass for her.
When she saw her gone,
she put her clogs in her sleeves, and
taking up her dress,
ran in all haste towards this monastery,
which was a good way off.
not finding her in the church,
rushed after her,
and as she was drawing near to her
asked a man to stop her.
The man said afterwards
that he found himself unable to stir,
so let her go.
having entered by the outer door
of the monastery,
shut it, and
began to call out;
when the governess arrived
she was already within the monastery,
and the nuns gave her the habit at once.
the good beginning,
the work of our Lord in her,
was brought to a good ending.
8. Dona Casilda a nun.
His Majesty began to reward her immediately
with spiritual graces,
and she to serve Him with the greatest joy,
in the deepest humility,
and detachment from all things.
May He be blessed for ever
who thus made her,
who had been once so fond
of most rich and costly garments,
take pleasure in the poor robe of serge !
It could not, however, hide her beauty,
for our Lord had given to her
natural as well as spiritual graces;
in her manners and her understanding
she was so winning that
she moved everybody
to give God thanks for them.
May His Majesty grant
that there be many
who thus answer to His call ! 
Stephany of the Apostles,
daughter of Fernando Gallo
and Maria Sanchez
of Pedroza de Campos,
was born on the morrow of the Nativity,
26th December 1549.
From her very earliest years, and
before the age of reason in children,
she gave herself
to penance and continual prayer.
As she grew in years she grew also
in natural beauty and grace,
with the more than consent
of her father and mother,
sought in marriage.
To escape from the importunities
with which she was pursued,
she took refuge in Medina de Rioseco,
in Leon, in the house of her sister.
She then went to live
with Dona Maria de Vcsgas,
who, discerning her sanctity,
offered to provide her dower
if she entered religion.
The young man
who sought her in marriage
now came to trouble her again,
whereupon she took refuge
in a monastery of S. Clare.
From the monastery
she was withdrawn by Dona Maria,
who quarrelled with the nuns, and
then her father sent for her
to Pedroza de Campos.
 (Regarding Sister Stephanie)
There she heard our Lord say to her,
'Go to Valladolid,'
and she went,
and became there a penitent
of F. Jerome Ripalda, S. J.
Under his direction
— staying at the time in the house
of Dona Maria de Acuna —
she presented herself at the monastery
founded by S. Teresa,
which she entered on the feast
of S. Mark, 1572,
in the twenty-third year of her age.
She received the habit on the feast
of the Visitation, 2nd July of that year,
was professed as a lay sister,
6th August 1573, and
died in the odour of sanctity,
11th June 1617
in the sixty-eighth year of her age
[ Reforma, bk. xiv. ch. xxxi. — xxxiv].
Dona Luisa de Padilla,
widow of Don Antonio Manrique,
who died in 1560. Oeuvres, iii. 162, n. 2.
"Dona Maria de Acuna married in 1547
Don Juan de Padilla Manrique"
[ Foundations: Ch.10: Footnote #14]
"He died when she was still young,
and left her with three children,
one son and two daughters"
[ Foundations: Ch.10: #8]
(later corrected to 3 daughters in (#8))
son:Don Antonio de Padilla [Ch.10: #10]
dtr: Dona Luisa [Ch.10: #10 ]
entered "the monastery of the
Dominican nuns in Valladolid"
[Ch.10: Footnote #15]
dtr: Dona Casilda
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Don Juan de Padilla
had three brothers,
Don Gomez Manrique,
Don Pedro Manrique de Padilla,
Don Martin de Padilla
[Foundations: Ch.10: FootNote #18]
This happened in 1573
when S. Teresa was at Salamanca.
Fray Dominic Banez,
at that time regent of the college
of San Gregorio at Valladolid.
Probably the Count de Buendia,
brother of Casilda's mother.
[Oeuvres, ill 166 n. 3. ]
Probably Dona Ana de Pedruja
who afterwards became
a Carmelite at Malagon
under the name of Anne of S. Augustine,
and died in the odour of sanctity
at Villanueva, 11th December 1624,
and was declared Venerable in 1776.
[ Ouvres, iii. 168, n. i. ]
Dona Casllda made her profession
as Casilda of the Conception,
13th January 1577,
at the age of fourteen,
in virtue of a dispensation
of the pope, Gregory XIII.
With all her wealth,
she went poor to the monastery,
for her family gave her no dowry,
but paid the monastery
for her food and lodging year by year.
In the distribution
of the unsettled property of the family,
that the brother had so large a share
— which went to the house
of the Jesuits in Valladolid,
where he was then living —
that the Carmelites received nothing.
There was some litigation, therefore,
between the Jesuits and the Carmelites,
but without any gain to the latter
(see letter of S. Teresa
of 17th September 1581).
- left the monastery in September, 1581,
at the instigation of a confessor, and
- became a nun
in the Franciscan house in Burgos,
of which she was abbess in 1610,
where she died
— sorry, however, that she had ever
left the house of Carmel.
In the roll of the professions sent
to the chapter held in Alcala, 1581,
is the following entry:
— 'Sister Casilda of the Conception,
has been a professed nun
these four years in this house;
she was born in Valladolid.
Her name was
Casilda Juliana Padilla, and
she made her profession
on the feast
of the Baptism of Christ,
in the year 1577'
[Fuente, vol. vi, p. 74].