Relics of Saints Thérèse, Louis and Zélie Martin

Relics of Saints Louis and Zélie Martin and Saint Thérèse of Lisieux at WMOF2018

Itinerary of the Relics in Ireland

The Carmelites have arranged that the relics of Saints Louis and Zélie Martin, and their youngest daughter, Saint Thérèse, will come from Lisieux to Ireland to coincide with the World Meeting of Families 2018. The Relics will be at the WMOF2018 Opening Ceremony in the RDS, Dublin, on Tuesday, August 21, and they will also be in the sanctuary in the Phoenix Park for the Papal Mass on Sunday, August 26. 

The Relics will also travel to several places across Ireland before and after WMOF2018. Each place that will receive the Relics will organise their own liturgical celebrations and times for veneration. Read the itinerary of the Relics of Saints Louis and Zélie Martin and Saint Thérèse of Lisieux here.

Saints Louis and Zélie Martin

Louis and Zélie Martin were beatified on 19 October 2008, not because they gave five religious to the Church, one of whom is a saint, but because their married life gave witness of an exemplary Christian life. That life was completely ordinary, that of a Christian couple who raised their children by working together. They knew the joy and pain of all families, but in their togetherness all was love: the love of God; love of their children; love of others. Saint Thérèse wrote to abbé Bellière: “The good Lord gave me a father and a mother more worthy of heaven than of earth."  And in a letter to Father Roulland she speaks of the "heaven towards which tended all their actions and all their desires."  Their life is like a catechism on family life. To know more about Saints Louis and Zélie Martin, visit

Download here a colouring picture of the Martin family.

Why Venerate Relics?

Relics are a key connection to someone important from our past. When a loved one dies we instinctively hold on to something that connects us to them – a ring, a watch, a bracelet, a particular photo, a special book. These are all connections to the one who has died and they remind us not just of the person but of who they were, what they did and what they stood for. So too in religion, but in religion there is an added element to the relic of a saint. A relic brings us very much into the presence of God in his Kingdom, where the saint intercedes on our behalf.

Relics raise us up, not just in terms of a comforting presence, but they remind us that the saints were human just like us, that, like us, they too had struggles. They remind us that we, like the saints, can overcome our struggles and be raised up to the Kingdom to live alongside them in God’s eternal life. We do not worship the saints or their relics – we worship God alone – but we venerate them and are encouraged by them to live the kind of life God asks us to live.
From the website of The Irish Province of the Order of Carmelites (O.Carm.)

The Carmelite Family in Ireland

The Carmelite Family traces its origins to Mount Carmel in the Holy Land in the 12th Century and later came to Europe. Today the Carmelite family includes friars, nuns and lay people.

There are two branches of Carmelite friars:  
The Order of Carmelites (O.Carm.) came to Ireland around 1271, founding in Leighlinbridge, Co Carlow, and in the Whitefriar Street area of Dublin. In Ireland there are currently seven communities. 

The Order of Discalced Carmelites (O.C.D.) came to Ireland some forty years after the death of St Teresa and established a house in Dublin in 1625, eventually moving to Clarendon Street in 1797. Today there are five communities in Ireland. 

The Carmelite Nuns live a cloistered, contemplative life, following in the footsteps of St. Teresa of Avila. There have been Carmelite nuns in Ireland since the seventeenth century and there are currently eight monasteries.

The Carmelite Sisters of the Aged and Infirm follow the Carmelite Rule. Inspired by the example of Venerable Mary Angeline Teresa and in a spirit of prayer and contemplation the sisters minister to the elderly in Our Lady’s Manor, Bullock Harbour, Dalkey, Co. Dublin.

Lay people form is an integral part of the Carmelite family. There are two lay groups: The Third Order of Carmel and The Secular Order of Discalced Carmelites (OCDS). The members live according to the Rule of St Albert and have their own Constitutions. There are communities in many parts of Ireland. 

For more information on the visit of the relics to Ireland, visit this page.


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