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RP3 21r

 
I want to take up my cross, sweet Savior, and follow You.
I want nothing more than to die for Your love.
I wish to die in order to begin to live.
I wish to die to be united with Jesus. (2x)

 

[Scene 10]

JEAN MASSIEU enters.

Joan, the time of sacrifice is here!... but before leaving the prison, you're going to have the consolation of receiving the Divine Eucharist. The bishop of Beauvais has told me to refuse you nothing.

JOAN

I thank you for obtaining this priceless favor for me; with Jesus in my heart, I will walk fearlessly to death. (Raising her eyes to Heaven.) O my God! I'm going to receive You in my prison, hidden under the appearance of a bit of bread, and my thanksgiving is going to end in Heaven where I'm going to con­template You in an eternal Face to face!

JEAN MASSIEU

You won't receive Holy Communion here, but in the prison next door. Before you leave, do you want to put back on the white dress you asked for, to wear to your death?... (He holds out a dress he's been holding rolled up under his arm.)

JOAN

Yes, I would like that very much. It seems to me that in this dress I will be more like my beloved Savior, who was clothed in white in Herod's palace.... I don't want to go to martyrdom dressed as a warrior, since peace is assured to me for all eternity.

 

 

© Washington Province of Discalced Carmelite Friars, Inc

 

 

 

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RP3 21v

I want to dress in the gown of a Virgin who is go­ing to her spouse....

Jean Massieu unchains her so she can put on the dress. Then in the dis­tance voices are heard, chanting the litany of the Blessed Virgin.

JEAN MASSIEU

Do you hear the voices of the faithful, coming along with the Holy Sacrament?... The procession is already at the prison walls, but we still have some time, there are many stairs to get up here....

We distinctly hear the invocations: "Regina Martyrum ora pro ea — Regina Virginum," then the voices seem to dissipate in the dark halls of the prison. Now that Joan has put on her white gown, Jean Massieu chains her again and they exit.

THE VOICES, chanting.

Fly to martyrdom... fly!...
Here is your deliverance.
Fly, fly, Joan of France,
Fly to martyrdom... fly!...
There is your spouse, there is your king,
There is the God for whom you fought.

We cannot see the judges; except for the priest with her, Joan is alone on the woodpile. The scene is disguised with screens or lamps, and stoves are ready to create the effect of a fire.

We hear the voice of the BISHOP OF BEAUVAIS.

Joan, you know the numerous reasons for your condem­nation: you are a Heretic, Relapsed, Apostate, and Idolator. By your sorceries, you've had a heretical king crowned, waving your enchanted banner over his head during the consecration... now you can go in peace. The Church to which you refused to submit cannot defend you... Every dead branch must be separated from the vine and thrown into the fire.

                     

 

© Washington Province of Discalced Carmelite Friars, Inc

 

 

 

 

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RP3 22r

JOAN

Bishop, it is at your hand I die!... I am not a heretic, I am a daughter of the Church, and the king for whom I fought is a most Christian king.... As for my banner, is it not just that, having been in hardship, it should also be in glory?... Oh! if I'd been sent to Rome, the Holy Father would have recognized that I am innocent, but I am content to die for my country, and I pray to God that He will not punish my enemies. I ask pardon from all those I have unknowingly injured, and I myself pardon all those who have brought about my death... Most Holy Trinity, have pity on me!... Saint Michael, Saint Gabriel... Saint Catherine and Saint Margaret, pray for me.

THE BISHOP OF BEAUVAIS, angrily.

Finished at last?.... Let the fire be lit!...

JOAN

Oh! I beg you, don't let me die without kissing the cross of my Redeemer one last time. (Br. Martin gives her a small wooden cross which she clutches to her heart, but she adds:) 1 would like to have a cross of the Church before me.

BROTHER MARTIN

I'll go look for one. (In a moment, he goes and brings one in.)

JOAN

Oh thank you! hold it high, until my death. Now I can fly to Heaven.... yes, I shall certainly be there before this evening.

BROTHER MARTIN
speaks the following verses, composed by d'Avrigny.
 

           

 

© Washington Province of Discalced Carmelite Friars, Inc

 
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RP3 22v

For whom would Heaven be, if not for you!...
Your prince was deprived of his legitimate scepter
You have offered yourself as victim to the God who makes kings
And you were accepted; He calls you today.
He demands the offering: it is worthy of Him...
Already your brow shines with a martyr's glow.
The bonfire vanishes and is changed into an altar.
Liberating Angel, take your flight towards Heaven.

The fire is lit. Seeing it flame up, JOAN cries out:

Ah! the fire... Br. Martin, jump!...

He descends; only the top of the Cross is in sight and Joan fixes her eyes on it.

We hear THE VOICES
chanting to the tune of "Au sein de l'heureuse Patrie" ["In the Bosom of the Happy Homeland"].

 

We come down from the eternal shore
To smile on you, and bring you to Heaven.
See in our hands the immortal crown
That will shine on your glorious brow...
 
Refrain
Come with us, dear Virgin,
O come to our beautiful blue Heaven!...
Leave this exile for the Homeland,
Come rejoice in life,
Daughter of God!...

JOAN looks up to Heaven and says:

I hear my voices inviting me to fly up to Heaven... M voices have never deceived me and my mission was from God!. ( The fire and smoke envelop her more and more; then she cries out: ) Oh! the fire rises... I am burning!... water, blessed water!...Jesus, come to my aid!!!....

THE VOICES

 

© Washington Province of Discalced Carmelite Friars, Inc

 

 

 

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RP3 23r

The flames of this bonfire are glowing,
But more intense is the love of your God.
Soon for you, the eternal dew
Will replace this fiery torment.
Refrain
Finally, deliverance is here,
See, liberating Angel,
The palm is already outstretched.
Jesus is coming towards you,
Great-hearted daughter.
 
Virgin and martyr, a moment of suffering
Is going to lead you to eternal rest.
Daughter of God, your death saves France;
You must open Heaven to her children.
 
JOAN sings this refrain.
 
I'm entering into eternal life!...
I see... the angels, the elect...
I am dying to save my country.
Come!... Virgin Mary....
Jesus!... Jesus!!!................
 
Joan bows her head and seems to sink onto the bonfire. Then she casts off her white robe and
[An additional loose page, 23*r-v, is slipped into the manuscript at this point.] 

With the screens removed, we see a magnificent throne. Saint Catherine and Saint Margaret support Joan, and Saint Michael is also beside her. They sing to the tune: "Oui, je le crois, elle est immaculée" ["Yes, I Believe It, She is Immaculate"].

SAINT MARGARET, crowning Joan with roses.

It is for you (2x)
An immortal crown (2x),

SAINT CATHERINE, placing a palm in her hand.

Martyr for the Lord, this palm is yours.

SAINT MICHAEL, seating her on the throne.

And the God of armies prepared this throne for you
It is for you. (2x)

THE SAINTS together.

Oh! rest in Heaven, Joan, pure Dove
Forever free of the hunters' nets.
Here you'll find a murmuring brook,
Open space and fields of flowers.

 
 
© Washington Province of Discalced Carmelite Friars, Inc
 
           

 

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