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The Story of the Rose - A Catholic Therapist's Encounter with St. Therese of Lisieux.

Updated: Mar 24, 2023

When I was little I always had a voracious appetite for the existential. My curiosity towards life, meaning, and purpose enveloped the depths of my mind as far back as I can remember. Searching for and knowing God has been the most important endeavor of my life, and one that led me to the work I’ve dedicated my career to. My deepest passion, my greatest adventure, and the most encompassing love I’ve ever known is that of my relationship with Jesus.

I was raised in the Catholic Church with a devout mother who loved to teach me about the Saints. One of her favorites, which also became mine, is Saint Thérèse of Lisieux who is also known as “The Little Flower”. When I was about 15 years old we decided to go out for a treat after church. On the drive, we began talking about Saint Thérèse and her notorious means of communication to send a rose to those who pray for her intercession.

About 30 minutes later, we sat down to have ice cream at our local Braum’s and were suddenly approached by what appeared to be a very sweet homeless woman on a mission to speak with me. She surprisingly presented an incredibly elaborate hand-crafted rose made of thin restaurant napkins. After handing it over to me she stated, “a pretty rose for a pretty girl” before she vanished. This memory has stuck with me my entire life and I knew from this moment on that this Saint was one close to my own heart and life.

As I’ve deepened my Catholic faith, I began reading books by The Little Flower in fascination about her life and Sainthood. Her love for the Lord also began at a very young age. With bold devotion, she became a Carmelite nun at the age of 15 (about the age I had my encounter). She was known for her intense love of Jesus and of neighbor, which are virtues of utmost importance in my own life and counseling practice. To truly walk the Christian path and be an example of Christ, one must know, express and practice great acts of love in all they do. Loving relationships are like a balm to the soul with which we are able to heal. And the love of Jesus is the glue that mends all of our brokenness back together and makes us whole.

I believe that walking with others in their pain and their journey towards the love of Christ is my purpose in this life. The truest path to healing is so much more than just learning coping skills, reprocessing memories, and talking about our problems – it is spiritual, relational, existential, and more personal than we can ever comprehend. It is ultimately the inevitable path to our Creator. We are restless until we rest in His love. For me, Saint Thérèse is an example of just how much this eternal love reaches directly into our lives to touch us in personal and intimate ways. The Lord has left a mark on my life and heart in pursuit of my soul, and He used this Saint as one vehicle to reach me.

This is the meaning of the dove carrying a rose in the Soul Revival Logo. I've dedicated myself in my vocation to soul-care, and hope to be an intercessor for others to receive many roses of love in their own path towards God's infinite and relentless love.

“The good God does not need years to accomplish His work of love in a soul; one ray from His Heart can, in an instant, make His flower bloom for eternity…” – Saint Thérèse of Lisieux

Soul Revival Christian Counseling is based in San Antonio, Texas and is accepting clients for virtual counseling in Texas and Colorado. Please visit us at for more information or to book a free 30 minute phone consultation with Michelle Byrd, M.Ed., LPC.

** DISCLAIMER: The information contained herein is for informational and educational purposes only. It is not therapeutic or medical advice nor a substitute for therapy. It should not be used to diagnose or treat any mental health problem. If you are located within the United States and you need emergency assistance please call 988 or 911 or go to your nearest emergency room. If you are located within Colorado you may also call the Colorado Crisis Line at 844-493-TALK (8255). **

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