A 105 year-old Cistercian nun who lives in a convent in central Spain said that after 86 years of being cloistered, she is happy and has never been bored.
“Even if I had married a prince, I would not be happier than I am now,” said Sister Teresita.
In an interview with the Spanish daily newspaper “Correo,” she explained that a vocation “is something huge” and requires perseverance, but brings great joy.
The Spanish nun entered the Monastery of Buenafuente in 1927 at the age of just 19.
“We went to see the patroness of Avila, the White Virgin, and I prayed to St. Teresa for a vocation,” she recalled, noting that she left behind “three boyfriends.”
“I wanted the cloister and not an active community,” she added.
St. Teresita has seen significant changes during her 86 years in the convent. She reflected on how “very different” life was before the Spanish Civil War in the 1930s.
“Everything was always very austere,” she explained. “We changed our habits once a month and an iron was for us a luxury, not like today.”
Over more than eight decades in religious life, Sr. Teresita has left the convent on just two occasions. The first was during the Spanish Civil War to take some of her sisters to see a doctor, and the second was in August 2011 to personally greet Pope Benedict XVI during his visit to Spain for World Youth Day.
On her way to Madrid to see the Pope, she kept her eyes closed the entire time so as not to be distracted.
Sr. Teresita gets up at 5 a.m. every day and retires each evening at 10 p.m., following the Benedictine rule of “Ora et labora,” prayer and work.
Despite her advanced age, she also reads the newspapers each day.
“We have to stay informed, and this isn’t bad for me,” she said. “On the contrary, it gives me more reasons to pray.”