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  • To Quell the Terror

To Quell the Terror

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To Quell the Terror:

The Mystery of the Vocation of the Sixteen Carmelites of Compiègne Guillotined July 17, 1794

by William Bush   272pp. paperback

At the height of the French Revolution's "Great Terror," a community of sixteen Carmelite nuns from Compiègne offered their lives to restore peace to the church and to France. Ten days after their deaths by the guillotine, Robespierre fell, and with his execution on the same scaffold the Reign of Terror effectively ended. Had God thus accepted and used the Carmelites' generous self-gift?  This remarkable book recounts the dramatic true story of  the events leading up to their martyrdom.  

Through Gertrud von Le Fort's modern novella, Song at the Scaffold, and Francis Poulenc's famed opera, Dialogues of the  Carmelites, (with its libretto by Georges Bernanos), modern audiences around the world have become captivated by the mysterious destiny of these Compiègne martyrs, Blessed Teresa of St. Augustine and her companions.  Now, for the first time in English, William Bush explores at length the facts behind the fictional representations and reflects on their spiritual significance. Based on years of research, this book recounts in lively detail virtually all that is known of the life and background of each of the martyrs, as well as the troubled times in which they lived.  The Compiègne Carmelites, sustained by their extraordinary prioress, emerge as distinct individuals, struggling as Christians to understand and respond to an awesome calling, relying not on their own strength but on the mercy of God and the guiding hand of Providence.  The book includes an index and 15 photos.

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