An Interview with Sr. Regina Marie Gorman, O.C.D.

Text taken from an article on the Thomas Aquinas College website.

The foundress of your community, Mother Maria Luisa Josefa of the Most Blessed Sacrament, was a very holy woman whose cause for canonization is now open. Would you tell us a little about her?

If you have watched the movie For Greater Glory, which tells the epic story of the Catholic persecution in Mexico in the 1920s, the dates, time, place, geography, people — those same dates mark the beginning of our community of sisters.

Sister Regina Marie, Carmelite, Thomas Aquinas College

Mother Luisita was born in 1866 in Atotonilco, Jalisco, Mexico. She wanted to be a Carmelite nun, but her father, in very good faith, arranged a marriage for her when she was 15 years old to a physician twice her age. Together, they started a hospital for the poor. Their marriage was a happy one, but after 14 years, her husband died.

Mother Luisita continued to run the hospital, but in her heart she still longed to be a cloistered Carmelite. Eventually, in 1921 she and the holy women who had been helping her in her work received permission to be active Carmelites. The persecution of Catholics was increasing at that time, so her focus was to continue to do whatever good that she could do, for this person, at this moment.

By 1924 all of the sisters had dispersed and were hiding in the homes of courageous believers. Some of the sisters were caught and spent time in prison. Seeing that this was no way to form a community, Mother Luisita and two sisters came across the border in 1927. They were welcomed by Archbishop Cantwell of Los Angeles who asked them to work with the tubercular daughters of immigrant families.