Sorazu, Ángeles

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Franciscan conceptionist nun, mystic, and mystical writer; b. Zumaya, Guipúzcoa, Spain, Feb. 22, 1873; d. Valladolid, Aug. 28, 1921. Florencia, as she was christened, grew up in an atmosphere of Christian virtue, but she had much poverty and other misfortune to endure in her childhood, and her education was limited. At the age of 15, when she was in Tolosa working in a hat factory, she went through a brief period of worldly attachment and minor dissipation. Converted from this, she consecrated herself totally to God. At 18 she was received into the Franciscan monastery of the Purisima Concepción. She took the name María de los Ángeles, though she was commonly known simply as Sisteror later, MotherÁngeles. She was elected abbess of her monastery in 1904, and remained in that office until her death. She is chiefly remembered for her interior life, of which she left an account in works written in obedience to her directors and published after her death. The more important of these were: La vida espiritual coronada por la triple manifestación de Jesucristo (Valladolid 1924); Autobiografia (Valladolid 1929); Exposición de varios pasajes de la Sagrada Escritura (Salamanca 1926). Three volumes of letters she wrote to her principal director, Mariano de Vega, OFMCap, were published in Madrid (1942, 1952,

1958). Her spirituality was influenced by her devotion to the mysteries of Christ, to Our Lady, and by her interest in the Gospels and the catechism. Her descriptions of transforming union, of the soul's participation in the divine attributes, and of contemplation are, according to the judgment of some, not unworthy of comparison with the writings of St. teresa of avila and of St. john of the cross.

Bibliography: l. villasante cortabitarte, La sierva de Dios, M. Ángeles Sorazu: Concepcionista franciscana, 18731921, 2 v. (Bilboa 1950) v.1 Estudio místico de su vida. "El caso de la Madre Sorazu," Verdad y Vida 14 (1956) 105114. m. lÉdrus, "Le Cas de la Mère Sorazu," Gregorianum 35 (1954) 656659. j. m. de buck, Révérende Mère Angelés Sorazu, conceptioniste (Paris 1937), translation and adaptation of the Autobiografia.

[l. villasante]