10 Nov HOLY SOULS – Day 9
Sr Thekla was the born in London on 11th March 1886, the youngest of the three daughters of Baron Friedrich von Hugel and Mary Herbert. She was educated at home, though would have loved to be allowed to go to boarding school! The family often spent periods in Rome, and met many distiguished scholars and prelates. friends of her father.
She first visited Carmel in 1906, when M. Mary of Jesus was preparing to make her first foundation in Liverpool, and she gave Thekla the option of entering Carmel whilst she was away, or coming with her as an extern helper for a few months in Liverpool. She chose the latter, and entered Notting Hill Carmel when the Prioress returned, October 1907. She received the Habit in February 1908, and made her Profession in March 1909. Very soon her clear mind and wide experience were employed, when she was made Bursar in 1914, whilst M. Mary of Jesus was at the height of her work as foundress. Sr Thekla had to manage accounts for her own growing community, and then, one after another, help to find funds for each new and usually struggling foundation. Their principle assets lay in trust in divine Providence. As a girl, two tasks that Thekla particularly disliked, and which she hoped to avoid by entering Carmel, were letter writing, and packing! As Bursar during the period of the Foundations, she was called upon to do both of these to a phenomenal degree! After twenty years as Bursar, about 1934 she was elected Subprioress, and worked in close collaboration with M. Mary of Jesus, whom she had always loved and venerated. During the last years of M. Mary of Jesus’ long life, Sr Thekla was her loyal supporter to the end.
In her old age, relieved of heavier responsibilities, she would insist on working hard at whatever humble tasks she could still manage, washing dishes, helping with mending, dusting , and so on. The last four and a half years of her life she was confined to bed after a series of strokes and heart attacks. After her long trial, God took her to Himself at 6.10 a.m on the Feast of All Saints.
Not having any image of Sr Thekla we thought we would include her dear Father.