From sr Francoise-Therese (Leonie) to her three sisters in the Carmel - February 23, 1919

From Sr Francoise-Therese (Leonie) to her three Carmelite sisters - February 23rd 1919

V+J! From our monastery in Caen on 23rd February 1919

Dearly beloved little Sisters,

Here comes Lent, obliging our little pens to go silent, but the language of the heart-to-heart we share with our Beloved is for all seasons and fills the soul with peace and joy.

I thank you, dear eldest sister, for having announced this recent death to me. She is the sixth to have flown away to the true Heavenly Homeland since my wonderful stay with you, which is saying something. It must be a very painful blow for our sensitive and maternal little Mother. Jesus loves her very much, and is showing her so by not holding back with her. It will be a pleasure to read the account of the Sister’s very short yet very full life. Instead of mourning the loss of God’s elect, we should feel tempted to sing a Gloria Patri, because they don’t die but enter true life.

You were 59 years old yesterday, dearest eldest sister, so I took Holy Communion for you. In my filial and loving heart, I felt a need to do this, as a sign of my gratitude to you. I’m terrified that one of you three will go before me, but like with all things, this is something that I feel we must face in perfect surrender to our Heavenly Father’s will, so I’m even ready to go to Him last if it pleases Him. But I’m hoping it won’t happen. I’m hoping that in His great mercy, He will call me to Him first. You undoubtedly don’t have the recipe for making gingerbread in your cookery book, so we’re sending it to you, thinking you might find it useful for feast days. Also, if we make all our little treats ourselves, people out in the world will no longer be shocked and spread the contemptible lie that we eat nothing but cakes.

For a long while now, I’ve had a delightful picture in my head of our darling saint amidst fluttering white doves. Little Céline, you must remember the delightful painting as well as I do, but I know that you have other things to do at the moment. However, I hope that it will be painted and appear in the near future, to the great satisfaction of the whole world.

Through ignorance, I missed an opportunity to have this letter taken to you, together with the Little Way that you’d like to retouch, but never mind, there’ll be another chance after Easter. It’s this letter which is most urgent and I’m going to send it by the post.

I send you all my love and trillions of kisses, darling little sisters.

Sr Françoise-Thérèse Martin