March 14, 2008

Why we named her Avila Marie

One of the most exciting things about being an expectant parent is spending the months thinking of baby names. Of course the minute I found out we were pregnant all the names I'd been storing since little-girl-hood came flooding into my mind once again and I'm sure Mike got annoyed at me (more than once) when all I wanted to talk about at dinner was this topic. Of course he would be facetious and throw out the most random, and not to mention, weird names he could think of - just to get a rise out of me.

Going through this process, I secretly thought I would get my way and have the name I wanted (c'mon, I was the one going through labor!). However, in the middle of my pregnancy Michael thought of the name that now graces our child.

Going backwards, Marie for a middle name comes from Mary, the Mother of God. One of our main goals as a family is to strive to imitate the Holy Family: Jesus, Mary, and Joseph, and as such we have decided that all our girls' middle names will be Marie, and our boys' middle names (don't worry dad, you'll hopefully get your boy) will be Joseph. This is to constantly remind us and our children of the goal we have.

Avila comes from St. Teresa of Avila. (and although she is the patron of headache sufferers, this is not the reason we chose her name) Funny thing is even though Michael discovered the name, since college I, too, have had a special love for this saint. After reading The Fire Within (for which this blog is named after) I fell in love with St. Teresa of Avila and St. John of the Cross. St. Teresa was known among secular people for her amazing charm and beauty, however she had such a deep relationship with God that he gave her the gift of the deepest form of prayer. She is now not only a saint in Heaven, but also one of the doctors of the church. Another interesting note is that St. Therese of Liseux and subsequently Blessed Teresa of Calcutta both took their names from this saint.

We hope and pray that our own little Avila will take after her namesake and come to love Jesus like St. Teresa did.

Here is a prayer, written by St. Teresa of Avila, that my school adopted last year. It is beautiful and it reminds us of our very purpose in life.

Christ has no body now but yours
No hands, no feet on earth but yours
Yours are the eyes through which He looks compassion on this world
Christ has no body now on earth but yours.
And another through which we speak on behalf of our daughter:
I am yours and for you I was born:
What do you want from me?

I am yours because you created me,
yours because you redeemed me,
yours because you bore with me,
yours because you called me to you,
yours because you also waited for me
and did not have me condemned.
What do you want of me?

See, here is my heart.
I place it in your hand,
together with my life, my body and my soul,
my inmost feelings and my love;
dear Husband and Redeemer,
since I have given myself to you,
What do you want from me?


Angie said...

I found your blog via name search for Avila. I love your blog (I, too, follow Conversion Diary as well) and will add it to my list :) I'm still wondering though, HOW do you pronounce Avila?

Michael and Kristine said...

Hi! I'm glad you found us! Avila is pronounced Á-vila [ah-vuh-luh] with the accent on the A and not the i. Hope that helps!

Angie said...

Thank you! It's funny because we've been through this before as one of our sons is named Augustine and we wrestled with...a GUS tin or AU gus teen. We finally settled on the first one as he's named after St. Augustine of Hippo and we've been adamant about no nicknames. It is so adorable to hear other little 2 and 3 year-olds say his name :) Thanks again and I love your name choice!