Teresa of Avila vs. Juliana of Liege

And then, believe it or not, there were eight! Today, and for the rest of the week, we will work our way through the Elate Eight, aka the Round of Saintly Kitsch. Not long from now, one of these saintly souls will be crowned with the 2022 Golden Halo: Teresa of Avila, Juliana of Liege, James Holly, José Gregorio Hernández, Origen, Madeleine Barat, Thomas of Villanova, or Thomas Aquinas (who snagged the last spot yesterday by sweeping past Oscar).

We kick things off with Teresa of Avila vs. Julian of Liege. To get to this point, Teresa defeated Crispin and Stephen, while Juliana took down Blaise and Cecilia. Don't forget, you can always pull up more...relevant information about the saints in this round by visiting previous battles in the archive on the home page and scrolling down to click on their past encounters.

What exactly is saintly kitsch? You might say it's in the eye of the beholder. Or that you know it when you see it. But, in the end, we hope this round brings out some levity, even as we continue our inspiring Lenten journey.

Oh, and if by some unknown and wholly unacceptable reason you forgot to watch Monday Madness yesterday, check it out here.

Teresa of Avila

You can publicly profess your support and love for St. Teresa of Avila on many surfaces or in any medium. In addition to the classics – Bernini’s statue The Ecstasy of St. Teresa and Reuben’s masterpiece St. Teresa of Avila’s Vision of the Holy Spirit and - her image and her sayings are plastered all around: statues, prayer cards, pillows, icons, posters, key chains, blocks, coffee mugs, prints, rosaries, medals, stuffed dolls and, of course, t-shirts and sweatshirts. Also, there are memorable books and musical pieces in her honor.








But nothing compares to a burning question making the rounds – does the Infinity Gauntlet in the movie Avengers deliberately resemble the Incorrupt Hand of St. Teresa of Avila?

What, you say? The Infinity Gauntlet is designed after the relic of St. Teresa? There are many who believe so. Articles and social media postings and statements address this provocative question.

Take a close look - what do you think? Has St. Teresa made it to the Marvel Universe?

-- Neva Rae Fox



Juliana of Liege

Shockingly, beyond a few cheesy prayer cards, finding Juliana of Liege kitsch is like stumbling upon a unicorn in the wilderness. There are no Juliana nightlights or dolls or trinkets. In fact, there is a great void in the market! Creating Juliana of Liege kitsch could be your next great business venture. Create kitsch! Get rich! Find your very own kitsch niche!

Fortunately for this 12th century Belgian nun, who was the driving force behind the Feast of Corpus Christi, you can drive your Cadillac convertible with horns on the hood to Corpus Christi, Texas, to remember Juliana.

Juliana did make this list of famous people named Juliana, clocking in at number 5! So there's that.

And if you want to recall her time at the monastery in Liege, a town outside of Brussels, you can crank up some music by the '80's heavy metal hair band Liege Lord.

Of course, there's plenty of Corpus Christi kitsch out there. All you have to do is type the phrase into the Google machine. And as you do, might we suggest kicking back with a Juliana beer, a double IPA from Drunken Rabbit Brewing?

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66 comments on “Teresa of Avila vs. Juliana of Liege”

  1. I (devout Episcopalian) even own some "Teresa of Avila Kitsch"! So I must vote, today, for Teresa.

  2. If I were voting based on kitsch, it would be Juliana. I've spent several happy days in the city of Corpus Christi. Why would a nun be wearing all that jewelry?

  3. Still with the pix? Was that explained?
    My good friend was named for Teresa of Avila, so my vote was easy.

    1. Agree, the blogger did a terrific job filling the void for a saint without kitsch. I'll take this opportunity to thank all of this year's celebrity bloggers for their research, wit and imagination. Thanks to them, I look forward to opening my email every morning.

  4. My sister would be disappointed in me for failing to vote for a saint who has an IPA named for her! But I've already been a Teresa fan for years.

  5. When someone or something is copied that’s considered a compliment. Me thinks the same with the Infinity Gauntlet & Incorrupt Hand of St Teresa.

    1. Talk about laying down the gauntlet! Theresa has had an army of support. But a fine effort out of thin cloth for Juliana & her stalwart blogger!

  6. CB Amber Beldane (give her some credit) did an admirable job of finding kitsch for Julian’s. But having stood, mouth gapping, in front of the Bernini sculpture, I think Teresa has the better kitsch. My vote is on the entire saint not just her kitsch and my vote is for Teresa.

  7. I voted for Juliana. The celebrity blogger did great work finding kitsch and my husband is a brewer so a beer named Juliana is a good find.

    1. ! was about to skip the vote today since I haven't voted for either of these devout women in the previous rounds, but it is the kitsch round and you convinced me that the Juliana IPA is a good reason to vote. (...now why did I give up beer for Lent?)

  8. I think Juliana has put a curse on my computer. Every time she appears in the contest, I am unable to vote. For this reason, I would vote for Theresa of Avila...if only I had a ballot at the end of the posting!

    1. try refreshing the site; I didn't have a vote button at first until I refreshed it.

  9. Infinity Gauntlet from the Avengers?? Linked to Teresa’s reliquary???? Voting for Teresa just for this

  10. Although knowledge of them has been blurred by legend and obscured by tawdry memorabilia, we need to remember that these were women of God, with lives filled with devotion and service to others.
    What I gain from this exercise is an enriched knowledge of the lives of saints, not amusement by tasteless and disrespectful jokes.
    There is a time for everything under the sun, including humour, but in this time of great trouble I need wisdom, gentle understanding and comfort.

    1. Every year there's kvetching about the kitsch.

      I for one find it funny. And it's a little respite during the time when it seems Lent will go on forever (except for those of us practicing the Holy Week music who could use a few more weeks of rehearsal!).

      If it bothers you, step away from the computer for the next 4 days. We love you and we'll see you next Monday.

    2. I'm guessing you are new to Lent Madness this year. The Elate Eight always "battle" with a round featuring kitsch, and things get silly! Don't worry; the serious posts will be back for the Final Four.

    3. I really enjoy the kitsch round and look forward to it every year, but it's not for everyone. You may want to either re-read the writeups from the previous two rounds and base your vote on that, or skip the 4 days of the round entirely.

  11. In honor of Sister Avila, my Spanish teacher and senior year homeroom teacher, I cast my vote for her namesake.

    1. Gracious no. I think most voters have made a decision about which saint they want to support based on the two previous rounds, this is to give the Lent Madness enthusiasts an idea of the range of inspiration that the nominees have provided. I doubt that many voters base their vote this round on the availability and quality of tchotchkes linked to the two saints who are competing.

  12. Had to go back and reread the bios, always a good practice anyway. These words for Teresa in the first round caught me: she is the patron saint of “people ridiculed for their piety”, among many other things. This is worthy of glory. And the gauntlet is just hilarious. If you are in need of more laughter, this write-up is worthy of our great SEC: https://catholicsaintmedals.com/so-is-the-avengers-infinity-gauntlet-really-the-incorrupt-hand-of-st-teresa-of-avila/ !

  13. Ummm...Why does picture on the left (supposedly Teresa of Avila) look an awful lot like an out-of-focus version of the person on the right (Juliana of Liege??) We're the twins?

    1. I think they're the same picture...and unless the ladies were far ahead of their time, that's actually Edith Cavell.

  14. Theresa for me. I've voted for her every round and she's my only chance on the left side of the bracket. Plus, a saint in the marvel universe!

  15. Your program needs a major overhaul. I was not able to vote because I could not access the little boxes waiting for my check-off. That made me feel as Teresa felt when she chided the Lord for putting obstacles in her way.
    When I got the "No vote recorded", I could see that Teresa was light years ahead of Juliana, who, although worthy, is not at the same saintly level as Teresa - as the lack of kitsch should tell you.

    I intended to vote for Teresa of Avila, so please record my vote for her - and send your programmer back to programming school.

  16. Gotta find Juliana Beer from Drunken Rabbit Brewery, since my ☕️ comes from Red Rabbit Coffee Co.

  17. Calling Liege "a town outside of Brussels" is a bit like calling Baltimore a town outside Washington!!!

    1. I couldn't agree more. Bruxelles and Liège are about 100 km from each other. Yes, Belgium is small by U.S. standards, but not that small:)!

  18. Well, done, Amber, to create Julianic kitsch ex nihilo! Are Liege Lord channelling Bon Jovi, or did all bands look like that in the '80's? The hair conditioner ads write themselves. Unfortunately your own name has been consigned to the nihilo. Brilliant effort just the same! Nevertheless, nothing surpasses the Infinity Gauntlet of Teresa. And nothing says "saint" like gaudy, tacky, tourist-bait reliquary objects. Teresa it is today, and may we all be allowed to keep our body parts after death.

  19. Great job, bloggers! If I can find it, I'll lift a Juliana IPA during our Zoom Pub Theology gathering tonight. But I'm staggered at the idea that Teresa's LEFT hand may have been present incorrupt through the holy gauntlet of infinity ... so with my "sinister" and "gauche" sister and brother left-handers, I will lift that IPA in my left hand, and vote for Teresa.

  20. My vote for Juliana was, if nothing else, a vote for the celebrity blogger, pulling out all of the (organ?) stops to come up with content. Well done!

  21. Not crazy about either one, frankly, but since I had to choose, I went with Teresa. I prefer not to say why.

  22. It’s all hard choices from now on. Honoring my mother’s birthplace and the beautiful Texas city of Corpus Christi today, supporting Juliana. Dr. Julio for the Golden Halo.

  23. I vote for Julianna today to honor my cousin, Sister Julianna, RGS (Suzanne Devoy). Born in Los Angeles in 1937, she became a guiding force in the Sisters of the Good Shepherd and spent her adult life in Hong Kong and Macau protecting and caring for the physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual needs of victims of domestic abuse. As a tireless advocate for legal and financial protection of abuse victims, she not only confronted local lawmakers in Asia, but also, in 2014 spoke to the UN about the desperate need for international laws to protect victims of domestic violence and human trafficking. She died in 2020 at the age of 83.
    My cousin was a contemporary “real presence” of Jesus to thousands during her lifetime. To honor her is to honor Julianna of Liege.