Nineteenth-century France was the first country in Europe where the conviction began to spread that it was possible to do without God, to live as if God did not exist. It was precisely in the country beyond the Alps, however, that some saints, such as Therese of Lisieux, reminded us that the meaning of life is precisely that of knowing and loving God. Therese was born in 1873 into a deeply believing environment. Recently, her parents were also declared blessed. She received a profoundly religious upbringing which soon led her to choose religious life at the Carmel of Lisieux. Here she progressively entrusted herself to God. At the suggestion of her superior, she kept a diary in which she noted the stages of her interior life. In 1895 she wrote: "On June 9, feast of the Holy Trinity, I received the grace to understand more than ever how much Jesus desires to be loved. Teresa wanted to respond to God's love with all her strength and youthful enthusiasm. She does not know, however, that love will lead her down the path of privation and darkness. The following year, 1896, the first signs of tuberculosis appeared, which would lead to her death. Even more painful was her experience of God's absence. Accustomed to living in his presence, Theresa finds herself enveloped in a darkness in which it is impossible to see any supernatural sign. There is, however, one last step taken by the saint. She learns that she, as a child, is entrusted with the knowledge of the little way, the way of abandonment to the will of God. Life, then, becomes for Theresa a carefree game because even in moments of abandonment God watches over and is ready to take into his arms those who entrust themselves to him.