The screening of “Thèrése” was sponsored by the Pontifical Mission Societies and the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples. St. Therese is honored as the patroness of the missions.
The film aims to tell the story of St. Thèrése by providing a window into her interior life and spiritual development. Lindsay Younce, a recent convert to Catholicism from the Society of Friends, stars as St. Thèrése.
Commenting on Younce’s performance, Carmelite priest and Thèrése expert Father Donald Kinney stated that, ” Thèrése is truly in that film, her presence is in that film.”
According to Luke Films, Inc., the producers, “Thèrése” is the first non-profit, donation-funded film in major motion picture history. They hope to release it in the United States on October 1, the feast day of St. Thèrése.
“This has been a true work of the people,” director Leonardo Defilippis told ZENIT. “It has been totally funded and created by people that love Thèrése.”
According to Defilippis, the film is an effort to evangelize through the life of “the most popular saint and woman of modern times.”
Defilippis added, “St. Thèrése desired to preach the Gospel on all five continents at the same time. Through this film it may literally be the first time since her death that this could be possible. She can’t do that with her traveling relics.”
The film received a standing ovation from bishops and journalists at a February screening in Dallas.
“Thèrése” is dedicated to His Holiness, Pope John Paul II.
More information about “Thèrése” can be found on the film’s Web site.