"Oh!... Je L'aime!... Mon Dieu, je... vous... aime!"
She died much like Our Lord, suffocating in great agony; the weeks and days leading up to her death, St. Therese suffered an ineffable darkness, "the trial of Faith". Neither her own words, nor those of any other living person, can describe what it was like to share so intimately her Beloved's death. Not even her sisters could comprehend it.
Therese is little, and yet great. Nevertheless she is always little...very, very little. I sometimes lament she has been declared a Doctor of the Church, resulting in many academics, intellectuals, and masters of theology and spirituality making a science of her "little way." Many times they miss. They miss her "littleness" - her insignificance ...
The only great theologian or mystic that I know of who best writes of what comprised her spirituality is St. John of the Cross, the writer whose works Therese's spiritual doctrine most perfectly embodies. John of the Cross was a little soul as well. The one person living today whom I believe understands the spiritual doctrine of St. Therese - and actually lives it - is our Holy Father Pope Francis.
Of course, the person who most closely exemplified Little Therese's "little way" was even more little and insignificant than Therese herself - Saint Teresa of Calcutta.
O Lord, Who has said: Unless you become as little children you shall not enter the Kingdom of Heaven; grant us, we beseech Thee, so to follow in humility and simplicity of heart the footsteps of St. Therese, the virgin, that we may obtain everlasting rewards. Who lives and reigns forever. Amen.