Dedicated in 1931 as a shrine to St. Thérèse of Lisieux, the “Little Flower,” the Basilica began as Our Lady of Mount Carmel and St. Thérèse Church, under the direction of Spanish Discalced Carmelite friars who came to San Antonio in 1926 by way of Torreon, Mexico. The Basilica was built during the Great Depression, following the 1925 canonization of St. Thérèse. The Basilica is still under the direction of the Discalced Carmelite friars of the Province of St. Thérèse, and it stands today as a monument to the great faith of the devotees of St. Thérèse. Its notable size, beauty, and spiritual significance led to the Shrine’s placement on the National Register of Historic Places and its elevation to the status of Minor Basilica within the Catholic Church, both in 1998. It is a center of spiritual and apostolic activity, where we invite you to renew your commitment to God and begin a new journey in faith.