LT 158 - To Léonie

LT 158 From Thérèse to Léonie.

March 1894

J.M. J.T.


Dear Léonie,

I cannot tell you my happiness when learning that you were re­ceived for the taking of the Habit!... I understand how happy you must be, and I am sharing greatly in your joy.

Dear little Sister, how well God has rewarded your efforts! I recall what you were telling me in the speakroom before your entrance in­to the holy ark: that it meant nothing for you to remain always the last, to receive the Habit without any ceremony.... It was Jesus alone you were seeking, and for Him you were renouncing all con­solation. but as our dear father used to repeat often to us: "God does not allow Himself to be outdone in generosity." So He did not will that you be deprived of the joy of becoming His fiancée public­ly, while waiting for you to be His spouse. It seems to me that the years of exile you spent in the world served to adorn your soul with a precious garment for the day of your espousals. The sad winter days have been followed by the radiant days of spring, and Jesus is saying to you as to the spouse in the Canticles: "For winter is now past, the rain is over and gone. Arise, my beloved, my dove, and come.... Behold I am at the door, open to me, my sister, my love, for my Face is full of the dew and my locks of the drops of the night." For a long time you longed for the visit of Jesus, and you were saying to Him as the spouse: "Who will grant me, my Beloved, to find you alone outside so that I may give you a kiss and that in the future no one may despise me!... "

Here at last is this day so much desired.... You have not yet en­countered Jesus, dear little Sister, in the presence of people, but you have sought Him with great care, and now He Himself is coming to you.... You consented to find Him alone outside, but He wants to give you a kiss before everybody so that all will know that He has placed His seal on your forehead and that never will you receive any other lover but Him.

Dear Léonie, I am forgetting to thank you for the letter; I should have begun with it, but you understand, do you not, that it is the joy I feel at your great happiness that alone causes this forgetfulness.

I hope your wishes will soon be fulfilled and your good chaplain will be quickly cured. I beg you, dear little Sister, to remember me respectively to your good and reverend Mother. Like you, I am very happy that she is the one giving you the holy Habit....

I leave you, remaining united with you in the divine Heart of Jesus.

Your unworthy little sister,

Thérèse of the Child Jesus of the Holy Face rel. carm. ind.

© Washington Province of Discalced Carmelite Friars, Inc