Born to a French farm family, Marie-Victoire Couderc joined a new religious teaching order, but was sent to manage a mountain hostel for women pilgrims at the shrine of St. John Francis Regis. It became a successful retreat house under her guidance, and the order split into a teaching ministry, the Sisters of St. Regis, and a retreat ministry, the Congregation of Our Lady of the Cenacle. Mother Therese was superior of the Cenacle sisters until 1838, when Jesuit advisers began replacing her with a succession of wealthy women. She lived out her days as an ordinary nun, suffering deafness and painful arthritis at the end. She wrote that “the surrendered soul has found paradise on earth,” and was canonized in 1970.