From Mme Martin to Mme Guérin CF 139 - September 7, 1875.


From Mme Martin to Mme Guérin

September 7, 1875

The pilgrimage to Lourdes leaves Séez on Monday, September 27, at nine-thirty in the morning and will pick up the pilgrims from Alençon around ten o’clock. They’ll return Friday, around five o’clock.

Our maid is going, and it seems that your chambermaid, Aline, also wants to go? If she decides to go, she should write me immediately, and I’ll receive her with pleasure. She doesn’t need to bring any provisions because I’ll give both of them what they’ll need.

As for me, traveling doesn’t tempt me. There’s only one trip that I would feel a great attraction to, and that would be to visit the Holy Land. And yet, I believe I’ll only visit it in the Last Judgment, in the Valley of Jehoshaphat (Joel 4:1-2). I’ll try hard to see everything while I’m there!

Marie and Pauline were very happy to receive your letter. They’re on a pleasure trip. Mademoiselle Romet came to take them on an outing to the countryside with the Benoît girls. There are nine girls, and they’re going to give themselves to it wholeheartedly. I don’t know what time they’re going to return this evening.

Today Pauline is fourteen years old. She’s quite sad to return to the boarding school alone. It’s a big heartbreak for her and for me. How happy I would be to keep her here with Marie! If you knew what this child is to me, she’s my consolation.

I’m not dissatisfied with my Léonie. If we could manage to triumph over her stubbornness and make her more cooperative, we could make her a good girl, devoted and not afraid of difficulty. She has a will of iron, and when she wants something, she overcomes every obstacle to get what she wants.

But she’s not at all devout. She prays to God only when she can’t do otherwise. This afternoon I made her come by my side and read some prayers. But soon she’d had enough and said to me, “Mama, tell me the life of Our Lord Jesus Christ.” I wasn’t sure I wanted to tell the story because it tires me out a lot, and I always have a sore throat. Finally, I made the effort, and I told her the life of Our Lord. When I arrived at the Passion, she was overcome with tears. It made me happy to see her have these feelings.


© Society of St. Paul / Alba House

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