The narratives of Celine


1. The notebook from Celine


2. Small details that are not consigned by St. Thérèse in her story of the trip to Rome




The notebook from Céline


From Tuesday, 8th November, 6:00 PM, until Wednesday, 9th, 6th PM.




321,000 h. [inhabitants]

1. New Campo Santo, crematorium

2. Palace of the Visconti (barracks)

3. Arch of Simplon, Victory statue in memory of the battle of Magenta won by the French.

-         Church of St Ambrose, not very beautiful from the outside, pulpit where St. Am. [sic] 16th century.

-         Statue of Leonardo da Vinci

-         Railroad station with frescoes

Cathedral of St. Charles Borromeo, his body, his shrine all in gold, his chapel in the crypt in bronze and the altar in silver. 460 steps to climb to the dome. Statue of St. Bartholomew flayed alive with his skin around him, it’s a masterpiece. Painted ceiling that one takes for sculpture. Crucifix that was carried in the village during the plague. Painting of O.L. of Miraculous Pity [Mercy]. The Holy Nail of the crucifixion. Stained glass: 3 big ones each composed of more than one hundred etchings representing the Old Testament, the Apocalypse, and the New Testament. The treasury of the church: a statue of St. Ambrose and of St. Charles in solid silver; each more than a million, decorated with gemstones.

A bid silver cross donated by St. Charles, another cross to be used to carry the holy nail, many busts of saints, a ciborium given by Pius IX, two monstrances, very old ivory plates and many other prize objects.

The marble that composes the church exterior and is worked finely is a remarkable thing, going all the way to the summit of the cathedral.

Church St. Alexander, altar and pulpit in precious gemstones, lapis azulis, amethyst. The sacristy and the confessionals in finely worked wood. A window representing a curtain; the Italians call it their most artistic church, it is unique in the world.

-         the palace of Garibaldi, one would think of terra cotta

-         In the Campo Santo, there are the most remarkable statues; the widows come to cry on the death of their spouses, their poses and their expressions are ravishing. The children carry a bouquet to the tomb of their parents, the Angel of Judgment, the Times represent two times, the Angels guard over a tomb, a young girl rests her elbow on the sepulchral stone. In the surrounding monuments, the statue of charity is a woman with two children, Faith she cries. O.L. charitably assists a poor man. A Mother who rejoins her son in heaven…etc. - The crossing of Victor-Emmanuel.

P.S. St. Alexander, the church is completely (painted?) and inside is paved with mosaics.

Ambrose Basilica, the altar is supported by 4 columns in porphyry and in the nave a colossal statue in marble of Pius IX.


Wednesday, 9th 10:00 PM until Friday, 11th, 9:00 AM




St. Mark’s Square, St. Mark church five domes like St. Sophia of Constantinople, its Bell Tower is separate, it is a square tower at 37 stages [of elevation].

-         3 posts where one places the flags.

-         3 posts where criminals are hanged.

-         A clock.

-         The Doges Palace, splendid paintings by Paul Veronese, by Tintoretto, the most beautiful one representing the glory of Paradise. Tintoretto. In the same palace the Bridge of Sighs where the prisoners pass from the prison, it is horrible.

-         The Palace of Chambord.

-         The glass factory.

-         A lace factory 5,000 workers.

-         The Church of St. Mary of Salvation.

-         The State Hospital very large.

-         Church of Frari, mausoleum of Canova, original, a door left ajar allows a glimpse of an urn that contains his heart, the beautiful statues in marble represent the arts, sculpture, etc., coming to cry over his tomb. The tomb of Titian is in front. It is on a ledge and columns. He is represented at the age of 99 years.

-         Church of the Dominicans, it contains an admirable chapel burned in 1867 by the Venetians. It was raised in the XV century as a remembrance of the battle of Lepanto.

Carmelite church near the train station.


Friday 11, from 10:00 to 3:00 PM.




We have just crossed the bridge that links Venice to the continent, it spans 3,600 meters.

-         Church of St. Anthony, in the chapel solid silver candelabras, his tomb and the stained glass windows of his life in beautiful marble around the chapel.

-         Reliquaries that contain the tongue of St. Anthony, his jawbone, the stone upon which he reposed his head, hair from the Holy Virgin, we have seen and venerated these relics.

-         St. Justine, church with 5 domes, her tomb, picture of her torture by [the artist] Paul Veronese.

-         Portrait of the Holy Virgin attributed to St. Luke, only the head is painted.





-         Church of St. Bartholomew.

-         Church of St. Petrone.

-         Church of the Poor Clares, St. Catherine of Bologna, she is conserved like St. Charles but we saw her behind glass, a white mark on her chin, it is the kiss of the Child Jesus, her hair shirt, the Child Jesus painted by her, the Holy Virgin and Jesus painted again painted by her, her lyre, her writings, the Crucifix that spoke to her, the phial that contains her blood, still liquid.

-         The Church of St. Etienne comprising in itself 7 churches well distinct. In the crypt the tomb of St. Vital and St. Agricola.

-         A baptistery from the VII century, a very deep well.




On a hill, the Santa Casa is entirely covered with marble but not inside. Statue of the Holy Virgin in wood of cedar by St. Luke. Bowl of the Holy Virgin. Altar where St. Peter said his first Mass after the Ascension of O.L.

-         To arrive at Loreto we have seen a [from the] train [the town of] Imola at the bottom of the hills. Senigallia patrie of Pius IX. Gastelfidardo historical remembrance.

From Sunday 13, around 8:00 PM, until Thursday 24, at 6:00 AM.




Mount Pincio, its promenades

-         Mount Aventin and its ruins

 -         The Church of St. Paul Outside the Walls had been destroyed in 1823, it is not yet done, achieved; 12 columns in marble all of one piece very rare, the precious gemstones there are in profusion, one sees green marble, red, grey, white, dark green. All of the columns are of granite polished from one piece.

The portraits of popes.

Relics of the saint in the crypt, in front columns of alabaster.

A large miraculous crucifix that one would not discover without grand circumstances.

A big chandelier.

Visited the cloister, they are of the Benedictines, in their treasures, relics of the true cross, considerable.

In the Church of St. Paul Outside the Walls, in the cloister, one sees types of crypts or underground passages the place where they found the bodies of St. Peter and St. Paul and among one of the chapels of the Trappists three fountains [there is] a little prison where St. Paul spent 3 days, this chapel has been elevated as the location of the martyr of saints who had refused to offer incense to idols. There had been 10,203. One sees the place where they are buried, some have already been removed.

The Baths of Caracalla in ruins.

The Church of St. Cecilia, charming basilica, over the altar marble statue of the Saint, she is laying down in the same pose in which she was found.

In front of this church not far from Mont Aventin, small monument that indicates the place where St. Pteter and St. Paul were separated.

Travelled across the Apian Way in the Roman country.

Church of St. Sebastian, his marble statue laid under the altar, in front, the rock that contains the imprint of the feet of O.L. made when he appeared to St. Peter; one of the arrows of St. Sebastian and the column to which he was attached.

Church of the Trappists it is they who have the one of Three Fountains from where St. Paul was decapitated, the column to which he had been attached. One cannot touch it because of a grill that is in front of it; the three fountains, we have drunk the water that spring from it.

Church of the monks.

Church built on the place where O.L. appeared to St. Peter carrying a cross to reproach him from fleeing from persecution; facsimile of the imprint of his feet.

Aqueducts in ruin.

Latin Way.

Tomb of Scipion, poor small house in ruins.

Door [Porta] of St. Sebastian.

Arc of Constantine.

Temple of Bacchus, square, small house, all in ruins.

Palace of the ancient Romans in ruins.

The Catacombs of St. Calixtus. Inscriptions, paintings, altar where Mass is said, tomb of St. Cornelius, of St. Cecelia, skeleton of a woman, cranium of a child and his feed, climbed five levels, painting of the 2nd century, an anchor, the woman from Caana, a bird, a knife, etc., fragments , all the tombs are excavated.


Excursions, Monday 21 and Tuesday 22




Bari, magnificent, Mediterranean – Vesuvius, Castle of the Egg [Castel dell’Ovo], in the water,

Castle of St. Elba, magnificent view – winding road – 2 tunnels, 1 km ½

From Friday, 9:45 to Saturday 26, 2:00 PM.




Magnificent Cathedral sculptured outside; in front a baptistery monument whose sculptured bronze door is rare. Michelangelo called it the door to Paradise.

       Church of the Holy Cross, same genre as the cathedral, white marble and very dark green.   Pulpit in marble remarkable, one might think it was made of wood. Sarcophagi with magnificent statues, among the a princess in repose. It seems she breathes – tomb of Michelangelo.

      Church of St. Madeleine of Pazzi, her body conserved like that of St. Charles.

       Church of St. Lawrence very ugly in the exterior


       2 pulpits representing the New Testament one climbs there using a stepladder – splendid mosaic altar, precious gemstones, lapis azulis it is blue.

(In the Church of the Holy Cross, there are many frescoes erased [on account of] jealousy.)

      Great promenade in a magnificent garden, panorama of the city situated at the feet of the Apennines – church at the summit filled with tombs of children, there are private areas paved with marble plaques, these are tombs.

      Church of the Annunciation, painting of the Annunciation by M. Angelo always hidden, to know the legend.


      Pitti Palace, magnificent museum paintings by great masters: Raphael, Tintoretto, Domenichino [Zampieri], Guido [Reni], Murillo, etc.


Between Rome and Assisi: Thursday 24, afternoon




Before Florence, small city very old situated on top of a hill.

-         Church of St. Francis, in the crypt his tomb, in the sacristy veil of the Holy Virgin, handwriting of St. Francis, very far from the house of St. F., the place in the [city] wall where his father locked him up, the door and the entrance of his house, it is under a grill.

-         Church of St. Clare, her body, one sees in in the crypt, on the side inside the Church a crucifix (very large) that spoke to St. Francis. Underneath head of S. Agnes, sister of St. Clare, on the forehead marks of blows that she had received from her uncles.

-         At the base of the mountain, the church of the Portiuncula, a little chapel in the church itself; indulgences; very far, adjoining the church, adjacent to the Church, shrub where St. Francis rolled around, place where the Holy Virgin appeared to him.


From Saturday 26, 4:30, to Sunday, 27, afternoon.




Cathedral very pretty at the edge of the city. 3 doors in solid bronze representing the virgins, very beautiful baptistery, an echo. Bell tower tilted.




Small details of the life of St. Thérèse of the Child Jesus that are not consigned to the pages of her story of the trip to Rome


Late remembrances written by Sister Genevieve around 1948-1950, with a reminder: “I did not follow a particular order, it is just a small pleasure.”




Basle. – At the hotel, the forks with 3 prongs amused us very much.


Switzerland.—the train coaches different from those in France we were interested.


Loreto. – it was at the side of the Gospel that Therese and I received the Holy Communion, in the little corner, very close to the altar. In the Basilica, we avoided placing ourselves under the staff of the big Penitentiary.


Florence. – persons wearing hoods seen in the evening: we were afraid.


During the day, a diluvial rain had turned-up, all three searched for shelter. It was a sort of small covered museum, but in the plain air. One climbed there taking large outdoor steps. [It had something to do with the Loggia della Signoria].


In the church where one was shown a miraculous painting of the Annunciation, one could not draw the curtain that veil it, even if pilgrims deemed that the group had at its head a bishop (Mgr. Germain, bishop of Countances).


Milan. – the Campo Santo absolutely delighted us, we were greatly enthused. Many old monuments were there to be admired, just as groupings and sections under cover as in a gallery. We also climbed the four crematoriums, but it seemed very sad to us, something not to be remembered, (We were in our group of 3 and not in the pilgrimage group.)


The church of St. Ambrose (?) [in fact it was the Cathedral St. Charles – the Duomo], we assisted Low Mass celebrated by Mgr. Germain, the three of us placed behind the shrine of St. Charles Borromeo, all the other pilgrims were in front.


Rome. – We went to daily Mass at St. Andre-delle-Fratte [St. Andrew of the Thickets] where Ratisbonne was converted, very close to our hotel (Hotel du Sud). Leaning forward from the window in our room, the procession from various schools interested us (ms: interesserent). One time, all the children and young people were in red.


- One day when the pilgrims were free, we strolled down a certain street close to a splendid church and a gigantic fountain of which we were ignorant of the name. I addressed a Gentleman who did not understand me, then I let out resolutely a few words: “Questri di piazza, la chiesa?” and the gentleman pleased with us responded to this Italian (mangled): “Piazza Navona”. He also named for us the church St. Agnes but we did not go inside. Therese looked at me with astonishment for having attempted to speak Italian!


- At the Trevi Fountain we were told that if one threw a coin one would be forced to return to Rome, we did not throw any. Therese, however, would return [for her canonization]. We three were alone there and not in a group.


- Ball of the dome of St. Peter – We climbed there. We one can, it seems, hold 12 around a table.


- [The Church] of Trinita di Monti, all three have visited it, alone, the sanctuary of the Virgin of Zion: “Mater admirabilis’.


Venice. – we crawled to enter, just us two, one of the horrible dungeons.


We visited as a group a certain cut glass factory where they gave us leftovers of straw from hats woven from glass.


We climbed up to the top of the Bell Tower, it appears, Napoleon climbed on his horse. The steps were not in operation, but by ramps with stops. Afterwards, this Bell Tower would collapse.


Pisa. – We climbed to the very top of the leaning Tower and we leaned out to the empty space.


Genoa. – We had bought small broaches of silver filigree. It was a butterfly [Celine brought back these broaches to numerous friends in Lisieux].


We had for our luggage [just] a big black leather sack that our father carried. We received on this subject many compliments from pilgrims who were encumbered with many trunks that they had to register and have delivered. [And also we were a nice pair, much like good twins. For necessary items we found that we could buy [missing] items in each city.]




The Spanish Steps were our rallying point, from there we would orient ourselves.


Tarpeian Rock – Like children who just left the seats of the boarding school, we insisted to see it. We were there by ourselves, just the three.


Franciscan Ossuary – We visited it with a group.


Father Simeon – We were received in the parlor at the entrance of the establishment [probably as a meeting place, because it is certain that Blessed Louis had met Father Simeon alone on November 22, 1887, while his daughters went to Naples and Pompeii.]


Hotel de la Luna (was it Lucerne or Venice ? let’s see [it is in Venice]).


In a grove that stood before them, the pilgrims came upon a large blond gold beast. It was spider, although only as “beautiful” as such an animal can be. I was not frightening. Its body was like a fat open hazelnut, the legs very short. It was quite extraordinary that our father took it in his hands so all the world could admire it, but it stayed well-behaved. It was put back right away into its grove.


In Loreto, we had bought pretty doorbells with wax seals guaranteeing authenticity. In the train, in getting through the car door, we hurried to respond the calls from Miss de Larminat (A. de Larminat, from Bayeux) who searched for us very much. Therese and I; we both liked her very much.


Lyon. – we climbed up to our room at the grand Hotel Collet via an elevator, this pleased us very much.


Marseilles. – On the return, we climbed to O.L. of the Guard via the funicular.


Our father did not forget to show us the celebrated Canebiere [the historic high street in the old quarter of Marseille].


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