Maryam of Bethlehem, The Little Arab

Maryam of Bethlehem, The Little Arab

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Maryam Baouardy is a daughter of Galilee, from a very poor family. At the age of three, she lost her father and mother and was adopted by her uncle. She never learned how to read or write, but her life became a remarkable succession of supernatural manifestations, worthy of Catherine of Siena or Teresa of Avila, from the stigmata to singular battles against Satan.

From where does she draw the heavenly wisdom, childlike yet strong, that made her loved by all? Where does this burning love that consumes her come from? For her, just as for St. Paul, “to live is Christ”.

This beautiful “Lily of Palestine” became Sr. Maryam of Jesus Crucified in the Carmelite Order. Both humble guardian of the grille and formidable forewoman, she was often visited by Jesus and Mary. The words she transmits from them, pearls of great price, are significant for us today as they enlighten the future of our broken world.

Maryam died in Bethlehem in her 33rd year, on August 26, 1878, shortly after the birth of Thérèse of Lisieux in France. Pope John Paul II beatified her on November 13, 1983. It is impossible to know Maryam without falling in love with her, without yearning for holiness, at her school.

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