OF S. JOSEPH'S CONVENT
By the Venerable Mother Anne of Jesus
Of the seventeen foundations
attributed to S. Teresa
two were not made by her personally.
Unable to absent herself from Seville,
she sent Mother Anne of S. Albert
to make the foundation at Caravaca,
having herself made
all the preliminary arrangements.
Towards the end of her life
she was requested to found a convent
but as at the same time
that of Burgos was projected
- chose the latter,
being the more difficult, for herself,
- nominated Anne of Jesus for the former.
This remarkable nun was born
at Medina del Campo,
25th November 1545,
her father being Don Diego de Lobera,
her mother Francisca de Torres.
A deaf-mute from birth
she was cured of her affliction
during a pilgrimage to a shrine of our Lady.
Bereft of both parents at the age of nine,
she was brought up by her grandmother
who formed various projects
of marriage for her,
personal beauty and refined manners
proving a powerful attraction.
But Anne spurned indiscreet attentions,
placed herself under the direction
of a saintly Jesuit, Pedro Rodriguez,
who tried her
by apparent harshness
but finally consented
to her seeking admission
into S. Teresa's convent
at Avila, 1st August 1570.
- took a great fancy to the new-comer,
- treated her
more as a companion and friend
than as a novice,
- made her share her own cell,
- took her to the foundation of Salamanca,
where she made her mistress of novices
even before profession,
which took place 22nd October 1571.
Anne accompanied S. Teresa
to Veas (1575)
and remained there as Prioress
enjoying the friendship and direction
of S. John of the Cross
during his sojourn at Baeza.
When her term of office drew to its end,
S. Teresa requested the nuns
not to re-elect her
as she had chosen her
for the foundation at Granada
then in contemplation.
S. John of the Cross went to Avila
to induce S. Teresa herself
to come to Granada
but failing this
he was glad to have Anne of Jesus.
though not as difficult
as some others,
was by no means easy,
and S. Teresa,
being but partially informed
writing from a distance,
addressed some strongly worded letters
but the good understanding
was soon restored.
Anne remained at Granada
about four years
after which she was commissioned
to carry out another project of Teresa's,
namely a foundation at Madrid
where she remained eight years.
In this period falls a great trial;
the Superiors of the Discalced Carmelites
having resolved to improve
(as they thought)
on S. Teresa's work
changed the constitutions of the nuns,
a proceeding which was
not only resented
but actively resisted
by Anne and
a considerable number of nuns
who appealed to Rome.
They gained their point
but were subjected to severe penalties
by the superiors in Spain,
the punishment meted out to Anne of Jesus
being particularly severe.
During these years she procured
the publication by Fray Luis de Leon,
of the writings of S. Teresa
(with the exception of the
Book of Foundations and
for which purpose she collected
the original manuscripts,
even that of the Life
which until then had remained
in the hands of the Inquisition.
From 1594 till 1604
she resided at Salamanca,
the convent of her profession,
where she filled for some years
the position of Prioress.
Meanwhile negotiations had been carried on
with a view towards
establishing the order in France,
and Anne was chosen as first prioress
of the convent of Paris;
other foundations followed,
but owing to difficulties
she withdrew to Belgium
where she was cordially welcomed
by the Infanta Isabel Clara Eugenia,
the daughter of Philip II.
Having set on foot a number of foundations
she died at Brussels,
4th March 1621
in the odor of sanctity.
Her process of Beatification
has reached that stage
where she is declared
a ' Venerable servant of God,'
and it is hoped that ere long
it will further advance.
At the request of Father Gratian,
of the Discalced Carmelites,
Anne of Jesus wrote the following account
of the Foundation of Granada.
OF S. JOSEPH'S CONVENT
By the Ven. Mother Anne of Jesus
Your Reverence bids me
write an account of the foundation
of the convent of Granada.
Owing to the weakness of my head,
my memory is so defective
that I do not know
whether I shall recall the facts;
I will relate what I can remember.
In October eighty-five
it was four years since
Father Diego of the Blessed Trinity 
(whom God holds in glory !)
Vicar of that part of your province,
came to Veas for the canonical visitation.
I had then ceased to be prioress
for three or four months,
and was very ill.
Although seeing me in such a state
he began speaking seriously
about our coming to Granada
as many of the most prominent persons
as well as
some wealthy young ladies
of good family
- desired a foundation
- offered substantial donations.
It seemed to me
that it was only his own good faith
that made him believe in their promised help;
I told him that I thought
their offer an empty compliment,
- that they would do nothing,
nor would the archbishop 
grant permission for a convent
founded in poverty
because there were already so many others
which could hardly maintain themselves,
as Granada had lately been laid waste,
the harvest had failed for several years.
The father saw the force of my argument,
but, anxious to make the foundation,
- was more hopeful than ever,
- told me that
the Licentiate Laguna,
auditor at the Court of Granada,
Father (Gaspar) Salazar
of the Society of Jesus,
had promised him privately
to obtain the license of the archbishop.
All this appeared to me very uncertain,
as afterwards proved to be the case,
but as the father had set his heart on it,
I earnestly commended it to God
and begged the sisters to ask Him
whether the foundation should be made.
His Majesty gave us
to understand very clearly
- that we were to expect
neither human aid
- but that we ought to found the house,
confiding in His providence
as we had already done elsewhere
under similar circumstances,
- that He
-- would take care of it and
-- would be greatly served in it.
This came to me after Communion
when the Father Visitor had been at Veas
for three weeks
urging the foundation of the convent.
In spite of all my doubts and excuses
I made up my mind
directly I had communicated;
I said to Sister Beatrix of S. Michael,
who had also communicated:
that God wishes the convent of Granada
to be founded;
go and call Father John of the Cross
that I may tell him as my confessor
what God has made known to me.'
When I had put it before him in confession
Father John thought
we should acquaint Father Visitor
so that he might write to your paternity
for the license.
The matter was decided
on that very same day 
and all that was needed
to the great joy
of the fathers and
of the whole community
who knew that the foundation
had been decided upon.
also to our holy Mother Teresa of Jesus,
begging that four nuns might be sent
for the new foundation
which we asked her
and make herself
as we felt confident of its success.
We also arranged
that Father John of the Cross
with another religious
should go and meet the nuns,
taking all that was required for them
on their journey.
They went from Veas to Avila
to speak to our holy Mother Teresa of Jesus,
and from there sent a messenger
and from there sent a messenger
to you at Salamanca. 
Seeing the letters
you granted all our requests,
leaving to our holy Mother
the choice of the nuns
whom we considered requisite.
She sent us two from the convent of Avila:
Mother Mary of Christ
who had been prioress there for five years,
Sister Antonia of the Holy Ghost,
one of the four first
who had received the habit there; 
from Toledo she gave us
Sister Beatriz of Jesus
who had been long professed and
was a relative of our holy Mother.
Her Reverence could not come herself
as she was just leaving
for the foundation of Burgos
which took place at the same time.
Long before she had written,
that when the time came
she would not herself
found the house at Granada
because she believed
(that) God wished me
to undertake the work. 
It seemed to me impossible
to undertake any foundation
without her reverence,
so I was distressed
on the feast of the Conception
of our Lady
the sisters arrived at Veas without her.
She told me in a letter they brought,
- that to please me
she wished she could have come
but that our great God
had otherwise ordained;
- she felt quite certain
-- that I should manage matters
perfectly well at Granada
-- that His Majesty would help me greatly,
and this was the beginning
of the troubles
which were to follow.
While the nuns were being fetched
the Father Vicar Provincial,
Diego of the Trinity,
went to Granada
to negotiate about the assistance
which he felt confident of receiving,
and was to write to us to come
when affairs were all in good train.
The zealous priest must have worked hard
- to obtain some fulfillment
of the promises made him
- to get the license from the archbishop.
But he could get nothing,
still he did not cease to write to Veas
in good confidence
(of which he possessed a large share)
about the many advantages
that had been held out to him.
I laughed at this
and wrote advising him
- to make no account of them,
- but to hire any house he could,
so that we might enter,
as the nuns had now arrived
The poor father was discouraged,
for he could not even do this:
No house was to be found,
and though he
had been to see the archbishop
was supported in his request
by two of the senior auditors,
Don Luis de Mercado
the Licentiate Laguna,
it was impossible
to persuade the archbishop
to agree to our coming.
On the contrary
he was annoyed at it and
- that he would like to abolish
the convents that were already there,
- why should more nuns be brought
to a place
where after the years of famine
the people could find nothing to eat ?
He made other very unpleasant remarks.
On hearing this,
who were advocating the matter for us,
as they knew how we were
writing from Veas and
hurrying the matter on, and
saying how little was required
for the ten nuns who were to come.
They helped the father secretly
and managed to persuade
a magistrate of the city
to let a house to us.
This being done
he wrote bidding us come,
and was deeply grieved
at having nothing more to offer us.
We were waiting at Veas
firmly resolved to start
as soon as the father let us know
that we could do so
as had been settled
between Father John of the Cross
and the sisters
who had been with us
since the thirteenth of January. 
During the delay
I went to make my prayer
one afternoon at the accustomed hour
and was meditating upon the Gospel
of the Baptism of our Lord
where He says to Saint John
' It becometh us to fulfill all justice.' 
absorbed in thought
had forgotten all about the foundation
when I heard a loud outcry
of confused shouts
which appeared to me
to come from devils
who were very angry
because a messenger was coming
with a letter telling us
to go to Granada.
While I was thinking this,
the noise grew so loud
that I became faint and feeling ill.
I drew close to the Mother prioress
who was near bye;
that I was suffering from weakness,
bade someone to bring me something to eat.
I asked them by signs
not to do so
but to see who was calling at the turn:
they went and found the messenger
with the letter
bidding us to start.
There arose such a terrible storm
that it seemed the whole world
would be drowned
with rain and hail-stones;
it made me so ill
that I thought I was dying.
The doctors and all who saw me
considered it impossible for me
to begin the journey
for the pains and discomfort I suffered
But as they appeared to me
to be supernatural,
I took courage and urged the others
to get ready the carriages and whatever else
so that we might start next day.
It was Saturday evening
when the messenger arrived
and all Sunday I was so ill
that I could not even hear mass
though my cell was near the choir.
We left at three o'clock
on Monday morning,
to the great joy of the whole party,
for it seemed to them
that they would render our Lord
by this expedition.
The weather was fine
but the state of the road,
owing to the previous storm,
such that the mules could hardly get along.
When we reached Dayfuentes
the fathers who accompanied us,
John of the Cross and
Peter of the Angels, and myself
discussed the means
of obtaining the license of the archbishop
of overcoming his refusal
to allow the foundation.
On the night
on which we reached Dayfuentes,
we heard a terrible thunder clap;
a bolt fell in Granada
on the Archbishop's own house,
near the room where he slept,
burning part of his library
killing some of his mules.
It alarmed him so that he fell ill,
and they say
that the fright made him feel
more kindly towards us,
for no one remembers a thunderbolt
ever having fallen at Granada
at this time of the year. 
On the same day
who had let the house to Father Vicar
which we were to enter,
the agreement made with
Don Luis de Mercado and
the Licentiate Laguna,
alleging that he had not known
it was to be rented for a convent;
Now he would not quit the place
nor would any of the people
who lived there.
He kept to his word
and refused to be influenced
by our two friends
though they offered him
fifty thousand ducats security.
We were due to arrive in two days
and our friends did not know
what to do.
Don Luis de Mercado said to his sister,
Dona Ana de Peilalosa 
to whom the Father Vicar
had not mentioned the matter:
' Sister, as these nuns are already
on their way,
it would be a good thing
- could offer them hospitality
in our own house
- were to give them a room
until they can find some corner
in which to shelter themselves.'
This excellent lady
who for the last two years
had not left her oratory
where she wept over the death
of her husband and her only daughter,
at once felt her spirits revive
as she told us afterwards.
She immediately set to work to
prepare her house and
get everything ready
for the chapel and
for our lodging.
She gave us very good accommodation
although the space was limited,
the house being small.
We arrived there 
on the feast of Saints Fabian and Sebastian
at three o'clock in the morning,
this being the most suitable hour
as we wished to keep the matter secret.
We found the pious lady
at the door of her house
where she received us
with tears and great affection.
We also wept
as we sang Laudate Dominum
overjoyed at seeing the chapel
which she had prepared for us
in the porch,
although as we had no license
from the archbishop
I begged them to close it;
I also asked the friars and the Father Vicar
who were present
not even to think
of ringing a bell
of saying Mass
either publicly or privately
until we had the consent of the archbishop
which I trusted to Providence
he would soon grant. 
I wrote to him
announcing our arrival and
begging him to
give us his blessing and
place the Blessed Sacrament
in our chapel,
for although it was a feast day
we should not hear Mass
without his permission.
He answered very kindly
- we were welcome,
- that he was exceedingly glad
that we had come,
- would have liked to get up
and say our first Mass for us,
but as he was ill
he sent his provisor 
to say it and
to do whatever else I might require.
The latter arrived soon afterwards,
at seven o'clock in the morning.
I begged him
to say Mass,
to give us all Holy Communion and
to place the Blessed Sacrament
on the altar.
He did so
with great solemnity
in the presence of
the auditors and
so great a concourse of people
that it was wonderful
how they could have heard
of the matter thus quickly.
By eight o'clock in the morning
of the day we came,
- the Blessed Sacrament had been placed
in the chapel
- more Masses were being said.
All Granada came to the place
as if they had come to gain a Jubilee;
they cried unanimously
that we were saints, and
that God had visited their town
by bringing us.
On the same day Don Luis de Mercado
and the Licentiate Laguna
called on the Archbishop
who was ill from the effects
of the thunderbolt
which had fallen two days before.
They found him in a violent passion
at our arrival. 
They asked him
if he was so annoyed
why had he given us permission
to found our convent ?
' I could not help it,
I was forced to act as I did,
though very repugnant
because I do not wish to see nuns
in my diocese.
But I do not intend to give them anything
for I cannot maintain
the communities I have already.'
Thus we began to be really poor,
both in name and in fact.
The alms bestowed on us by Dona Ana
were very small
and other people gave us nothing
as we were living in her house
to which all the poor had resort and
from which large sums were given
to nearly all
the religious houses and hospitals
in the town.
Thus, no one supposed
that we were in want
and on several days
we should not have been able
to feed ourselves
on what this lady gave us
if our Discalced Fathers
of the Convent of Los Martires 
had not sent us some bread and fish.
They, themselves, were very badly off
on account of the great
dearth and scarcity
from which Andalusia suffered that year.
We had no other bedding
except what we had brought with us,
which was so little
that only two or three could sleep on it,
and most of us were obliged
to rest during the night
on some rush mats
that were in the choir.
We were so delighted at this
that, in case it might be stopped,
we let nobody know of our need;
we hid it from our devout hostess
lest we might be troublesome to her.
As she saw
that we always looked
satisfied and contented,
and believing that we were
good and mortified nuns,
she did not notice
that we required anything more
than she had given us.
It was thus
that we passed the greater part
of the seven months
we lived in her house.
During that time
we received many visitors
belonging to the best society
of the town,
besides religious of all the Orders,
who spoke of nothing else
but our rashness in founding houses
in such poverty,
destitute of all human aid.
- that it was this
which guaranteed Divine support
- that our confidence in God,
after the many proofs
He had given to our convents
of His care and providence,
removed all our anxiety
about their foundation.
Indeed, we preferred it
to any other way,
for we thought it was the safest course.
Our visitors laughed very much
at our words
at how contented we were
in our tiny enclosure
which we were so strict in keeping
that even Don Luis de Mercado,
who lived in the same house,
had never seen us without our veils down
no one knew
what our faces looked like.
In this we were not doing more
than our Rule obliges us,
but that is thought very highly of in Granada.
Many persons of all classes
came to ask for the habit
but although they numbered
more than two hundred
we did not see one
whom we could receive conformably
to our Constitutions.
avoided speaking to some of them
put the others off,
- that they must learn to know
our mode of life first and
- that we were bound
to test their vocation.
we could not take fresh members
until we had another house,
as we had room for no more.
We made great efforts,
to find another dwelling,
but no place could be had,
either for hire or for sale.
I felt rather troubled at times
by lack of aid
from the inhabitants of the town,
but whenever I thought about it,
I seemed to hear the words
Christ our Lord said to His apostles:
'When I sent you
without purse and scrip and shoes,
did you want anything .' 
and my soul replied:
' No indeed, Lord ! '
in full confidence
that both in spiritual and temporal matters,
His Majesty would provide for us
All this did not happen
without a special purpose,
for the most distinguished priests
and preachers of the city
said Masses and
gave us their sermons,
almost without our asking them.
to hear our confessions and
to learn about our life.
This increased the trust I felt in my heart
that we should want for nothing,
which trust was given me by God
as it arose from an incident
which occurred directly I came to the place.
I heard interiorly the words,
uttered with great stress and emphasis:
'Scapulis suis obumbrabit tibi 
et sub pennis ejus sperabis.'
I related this
to my confessor,
Father John of the Cross,
to Father Master John Baptist de Ribera
of the Society of Jesus
to whom I told all that happened to me
both in and out of confession.
It appeared to both of them
to be a sort of pledge,
given me by our Lord,
that this foundation would be prosperous,
as up to this time,
that is during four years, it has been,
Blessed be His name !
who came with me
that during all this time
they have experienced a deeper sense
of the presence of His Majesty and
of His communications
than ever before in their lives.
This became evident
in their own advancement
in that which everyone said
was caused by their example
in the convents in the city.
I learnt from the President,
Don Pedro de Castro,
that a great change for the better
had taken place in these nuns
since we came,
and there are large numbers of them
To the favours granted by God
which I have already mentioned
He added another signal grace —
- that of so realizing that
our Lord Jesus Christ kept us company
in the Blessed Sacrament of the altar,
- that we seemed to perceive
His bodily Presence visibly.
This was so usual and so universal,
that we often spoke to one another
saying that the Blessed Sacrament
never had produced the same effect
upon us in any other place.
which we felt
directly it was placed in the chapel,
still remains with some of us,
although not so perceptibly
as during the first seven months.
At the end of this period 
we found a house to rent
which we entered in perfect secrecy,
without the knowledge of the landlord,
the former tenant having left it empty.
You had then come from Baeza
to look after our interests.
Nothing more could be done
until ten months afterwards
when our Lord began to inspire
some young ladies
of the first families of the city
with a serious desire of joining us.
Encouraged by their confessors
without asking leave
of their parents and relations
who would never have consented
to their entering so austere an Order,
they came, unknown to anyone,
to take our habit.
After a few days,
six of them were clothed
with great solemnity.
Their relatives were very indignant
the whole city was disturbed,
for people thought
it was a terrible thing
to enter our community.
we were told,
took great care
to prevent their daughters visiting us,
for the mother and father
of Sister Marianne of Jesus,
the first whom we received,
died soon afterwards,
and report said
that their death was caused by grief.
As for her,
she has never repented having come,
on the contrary,
she is very happy and grateful
to our Lord
for having called her to this Order.
She has turned out very well,
as have all those
who entered with her at that time,
also those whom we have received since.
When they were professed
we tried to purchase a house
with their dowries
but although we negotiated for several
and the agreements were actually written out,
yet the purchase was never made
until we decided upon one belonging
to the Duke de Sesa,
Yet there were such great obstacles
to this purchase
that it seemed madness to fix upon it,
as everyone said,
although it was the most suitable for us
and the most favourably situated
However, I resolved to try to obtain it,
for two years ago the sister
who acts as my secretary
(whom I do not name
for you know well who she is)
that our Lord had three times given her
that the convent was to be
in the Duke's house,
and she knew this with such certainty
that nothing would be able to prevent it.
Now it has come to pass,
as your Reverence is aware,
and we are living there at present 
Anne of Jesus.
Fray Diego de la Trinidad,
originally a Jeronymite,
a zealous, prudent and amiable man, and
a great servant of God.
He had accompanied
Father John of Jesus (Roca) to Rome
to obtain the separation
from the Calced friars.
At this time he was Prior of Seville and
Vicar-Provincial of Andalusia.
He died of the plague in May 1582.
Don Juan Mendez de Salvatierra,
Archbishop of Granada since 1576.
13th November 1581.
Father Gratian had just founded
a convent of friars
and college at Salamanca
(1st June 1581)
named San Lazaro
from the church given it
by Don Andres de Cordoba,
which had belonged to the lepers
[ Peregrinación de Anastasio, dial, xiii.)
See Life, ch. xxxvi. 5.
On the 28th of November
S. Teresa wrote to
Mother Mary of S. Joseph,
Prioress of Seville:
' I have asked you
(in another letter of the same date,
to send two sisters of your convent
I trust you will not choose the least fit;
I beg it of you in charity
as you know
how important it is
they should be truly perfect and capable.'
On the next day
she told the Provincial, Father Gratian
that she had chosen
three nuns from Avila,
three from Veas,
including Anne of Jesus
two from Seville and
two lay sisters
from Villanueva de la Jara
where there were five.
'Anne of Jesus will be displeased
for she would have liked
to make all the arrangements herself.'
In fact she did not receive
the two lay sisters
but sent them back to their own convent
much to the annoyance of S. Teresa
who remonstrated with her
in a letter of 30th May.
The reason was
that there were
neither sufficient means
nor the necessary accommodation
for so many nuns,
Anne acted on the advice
of the Vicar-provincial and
of S. John of the Cross;
Matters were explained afterwards.
Besides the three sisters from Castille
four were chosen from Veas,
in addition to
Anne of Jesus
as the future prioress
Beatrice of S. Michael,
Eleanor Bautista of Jesus and
Lucy of S. Joseph;
and two from Seville,
Mary of Jesus and
Mary of S. Paul.
S. Matthew iii. 15.
Sic enim decet nos Implere
The octave of Epiphany
is set apart for the consideration
of the Baptism of Christ.
Two incidents of this journey
are recorded in the depositions of
Mother John-Evangelist and
Mother Mary of S. John.
At one point the travelers came dangerously
near the edge of a precipice
down which they must inevitably
had not a man suddenly appeared
and ordered them to alter their course;
Anne of Jesus afterwards declared him
to have been S. Joseph.
Later on they met a man
who had been so badly thrown
that he appeared lifeless.
Anne bade the nuns join her in prayer,
and after a short time
he revived and found himself so well
as to be able to remount his horse
and continue the journey.
Nevertheless the Archbishop
received S. John of the Cross,
who had hastened on
and called on him the following morning,
very coldly and persisted in his refusal.
Dona Ana de Penalosa
was the widow
of Don Juan de Guevara
who died in 1579.
She was a penitent
of S. John of the Cross,
who wrote at her request
the Explanation of his poem,
The Living Flame of Love.
The last letter preserved of him
is addressed to her;
it bears the date
Penuela, 21st September 1591,
that is less than three months
before his death.
20th January 1582.
Anne of Jesus spent the rest of the night
in finishing the decoration
of the chapel and
preparing it for Mass.
Father Vicar who had given up all hope
of obtaining the archbishop's consent
was of opinion
- that the bell might be rung,
and the Blessed Sacrament reserved
in token of the inauguration
of the convent;
- (that) the archbishop would yield
before an accomplished fact,
and would not dare to disband
a convent founded in the house
of Don Luis de Mercado
and favoured by the members
of the court of Granada.
This opinion was shared by everyone
except Mother Anne of Jesus.
Don Antonio Barba
The Spanish wording,
'throwing out sparks',
is even more expressive.
of the Discalced Carmelite friars
called Los Martires (martyrs)
had been founded
by Father Jerome Gratian
on 19th May 1573.
It was situated close to the Alhambra,
but separated from it by a ravine.
There had been a hermitage erected
over the ruins of the prisons
in which the M. oo rs used to keep
their Christian captives.
While digging near it for water
among the bones of the M . oo rs,
was found the skeleton
of the holy Archbishop Gonzalo of Jaen
who died in prison having bestowed
his ransom brought by his flock
to redeem other prisoners
who were in danger of losing their faith.
[ Peregrinación de Anastasio, dial,
XIII, p. 209. ]
St Luke xxii. 35.
"Ps. xc. 4.
'He will overshadow thee
with his shoulders:
and under his wings, thou shalt trust.'
The house they subsequently entered
was situated in the Calk Ehira
and belonged to
Don Alonso de Granada y Alarcon.
Marianne of Jesus (de los Cameros),
afterwards Prioress of Granada and
foundress of Almodovar and Cabra;
Isabel of the Incarnation (de Puebla),
foundress of Baeza and Prioress of Jaen;
Mary of S. John (de Velasco);
Catherine of the Holy Ghost (de Leyva),
three times prioress of Granada;
Catherine of Jesus
who afterwards went to Malaga, and
Mary of S. Paul.
[ oeuvres, iv. 242, note 2. ]
Situated Calle San Matias;
it still serves as convent
of the Teresian nuns.
The Foundation of S. Joseph's Convent
by the Ven. Mother Anne of Jesus
[ Book of the Foundations ]