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From Mme Guérin to Jeanne La Néele - May 8, 1892.

From Mrs. Guérin to Jeanne La Néele. 8th May 1892. 

Dear little Jeanne,

I was very pleased with the visit you paid me via your lovely little letter yesterday. I’m still fairly well and I hope to be able to get up soon. You don’t say whether you have decided to leave on Tuesday morning, but I think that it is because you will not be sure you will be able to leave until the last minute. In any case we are thinking of you every day, as you can well imagine, and with all my heart I desire for your trip to take place this week. Reading the Mass for the Feast of the Patronage of Saint Joseph, I thought of you in particular and I read some very comforting words, particularly in the Epistle. – I ask Saint Joseph to be your protector before, during and after your trip. I say before, because so many difficulties can spring up with regard to patients and prevent you from going. And then [lv°] I fear my dear little Jeanne’s patience might be sorely tested by this, so I’m recommending her to Saint Joseph’s prayers so that he may deliver her from any agitation that could alter the beauty of her soul. He had so many trials himself that he will be able to sympathise with yours and you can be sure that when you address him in faith, he will make it so that all the difficulties lift when the God’s set time comes. So I hope it will be Tuesday and I join you in wishing it to be so. Did you see, my little Jeanne, that there are pools in Auray? Your papa read it in the Guidebook. So I think that if there are pools, they are for bathing in like in Lourdes. I have no idea if this is the case, but you could find out. If it is, your father and I urge you to bathe in them. You know this sort of water can never do any harm and that if you do this in a spirit of faith, God often rewards it with a healing. Well, I don’t know what people do, or whether it’s like Lourdes, but I strongly urge you to do what there is to do in great faith. With that in view, I’m praying to Mother Geneviève to remove all doubt from your mind. I’m mentioning Mother Geneviève here [2r°] because I’ve just remembered a little event from her life which I was told about and which I will tell you about in person, for want of room. – You will think, dear little Jeanne, that I am an overly-cautious mother but, you see, I love you so much that I want to surround you with protection. When you were very small I would always be near you and I sought to remove you from all danger. I can’t do that anymore, but I still think a great deal about my dear little daughter and recommend her to the prayers of those who are much more powerful than a poor earthly mother.

I can pray for you and that is what I try to do as best I can. I also give you my modest advice, which comes from my heart. I do hope that God will bless you and grant that which you so desire. – I think you will go to Auray first but I think that you will need the whole of the rest of the week to make your journey. We strongly urge you to not come back before Saturday or Sunday. That is because Mont Saint-Michel is very far away from Auray. I fear you will wear yourself out by wanting to proceed too quickly, and then it will allow you to take advantage of your trip a little. Well, you’ll see. Whatever you do, choose good hotels; when travelling you mustn’t economise too much, make sure you lock your bedroom door. (You will laugh at my precautions, but it doesn’t matter, I’m telling you everything that comes to mind, as if I was talking to you.) Now you can’t write to us, and we certainly can’t write to you, since we won’t know where to send our letters. I only [2v°] ask that you send me a telegram when you arrive in Auray for example, letting me know what your address is so that I know where to send a telegram in case I have something to tell you (which is not likely). It is nothing but a precaution that we should always take when going away. You can send me another one in another town so that I have a point of reference. Would you mind sending me a little note tomorrow evening if you’re leaving, just a note, it doesn’t need to be long, just put: we are leaving.

Your papa still has to go and fetch your uncle; he doesn’t yet know whether it will be Tuesday or Wednesday. I will let your maid know. Whatever happens, there must be no fuss made of him, he will come with his servant. What you have decided to wear seems very good to me. Blue-grey is charming if it goes well with your dresses. Don’t make it too blue, it might clash, but in the same shade as the other ladies is fine. If it had come from Paris, it might have been more stylish, but never mind; if it looks good, then that is the important thing. It is not too expensive, it is above all necessary that you like the garment and we will be satisfied. – Léonie is now in your old room, which she likes very much. Her room is all ready to welcome her father. I hope everything will go well, Céline is very emotional, but the good news you gave us did us good. Marie will go to see you as soon as it can be arranged. You know she is always glad to be with you, only I can’t tell you whether or not it will be next week. [lr°tv] You must first go on your trip, and then we will talk about Marie’s visit. Come and see us when you can, we would like that very much, but above all, you must take all the time you need for your trip. I spoke to Mama the other day about your intention to go to Mont Saint-Michel, so she won’t be surprised.

Farewell, my darling, I think I’ve told you everything but I will say again that I love you with all my heart, that we are praying for you and that I will write to the Carmelites once I know you have left. I send all my love to you and to my dear Francis, whom I thank for taking his little wife on such a lovely trip.

The whole family sends you their love and unites their prayers to yours.

Your mother

C.G.

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