From Céline to Thérèse - October 14, 1888

From Céline to Thérèse.

October 14, 1888

My dear little Sister,

Happy feast!. . . What sadness for your poor Céline not to be able to wish it as in other years. I cannot get used to being sepa­rated from you; yesterday, I shed bitter tears at the feet of Jesus.

Do you remember when, last year the both of us used to go into the side aisles in order to see the Tabernacle better? Well, I was there again; no one saw me, only Jesus.

Yes, I cry over you often, I who formerly never used to shed tears; they are always ready to flow now, and I believe that the more this goes on, the more I feel our separation. I find myself without any support, without any counsel. What conformity of ideas, of affections, what sweet outpourings we used to have to­gether, and all this is past! At Aunt's house, there is no longer that happy family life as it was before; there are always sick people; you hear them always moaning. Here I have no support; Léonie is thinking incessantly about the Visitation, and my little affairs don't interest her.

Thérèse! is this the way to wish a happy feast! Don't be dis­turbed by my complaints. Jesus is here! He must take the place of all. When He is absent, it is then that we must say with St. Francis Xavier: "The absence of the Cross is the absence of life." Or again: "Don't cease to suffer for a moment and you will not cease to love."

Happy feast, darling, happy feast!. . . And here is another dis­appointment for me. I had a little present to give you; I went to a lot of trouble, and I don't have it. But you know, there is no feast without its octave, so, during the octave of your feast, you will find my little souvenir at the feet of your little pink Jesus. Don't forget to look there. In the meantime, I am giving you four pink candles; they are transparent like my heart and my love for you, no cloud, no veil.

Good little Father is sending his Queen some clowns. He alone had the idea; if you only knew how much this touched me! Fur­thermore, he is giving you fifty centimes worth of pink cashmere which, alas! has not arrived either. It was impossible to find any in any of the stores, and he had to write to Paris.

Because of your feast, he bought you some fish, all the most beautiful fish there were at the fish-market; never yet has he bought any so expensive, and he did not want to tell me the price. Everybody is feasting you, my darling; I have the least of gifts, but I have my heart!. . .

And the Holy Face, I found it beautiful. I think we should have brought it to you today.

Kiss dear Mother. I love Marie and Pauline, and they know how much!

Your little Céline

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