From sr Francoise-Therese (Leonie) to her three sisters in the Carmel - February 1, 1930

From Sr Francoise-Therese (Leonie) to her three Carmelite sisters - February 1st 1930

V + J! From our monastery in Caen this 1st February 1930

Dearest little sisters,

After having been lavished with gifts in honour of my being royalty for a day, I was far from expecting to receive my little King of Love, pressing all souls against His Heart in the graceful and symbolic form of a dove. It’s so pretty, charming and delightful! Our dearest Mother has let me have it for the altars dedicated to our Holy Founders in the gallery, of which I am in charge. He is placed sometimes on one altar, sometimes on another. You can understand how happy I am. Our Sisters love Him too and pay Him many visits. He must come from the same source as the figure of the Child Jesus with His Lamb that you gave me for my feast day two years ago. That one goes on the altar in the ante-choir, which is our main oratory. We are thrilled with both of them. These figures of the Child Jesus are perfect, and they certainly make beautiful and precious gifts when adorned with the relics of our little St Thérèse. I’m so touched by your Mother Sub-Prioress’s kind thought that I love her as though I knew her. I’m praying hard to Thérèse to heal her. Thank you, dear little Sister Marie of the Trinity, for taking Communion for me and for the pretty little picture of the Blessed Sacrament.

Do not worry, little Céline, your letter was fine and we understood it perfectly. The crucifix you sent me isn’t the one I gave Thérèse when she was a child. That one was bigger whereas this one is a rosary crucifix. I don’t know where it came from or who it belonged to. I could tell that you were afraid I would keep it; heaven preserve me from being so tactless. His Excellency is being sorely tried. In nine months he has lost two Vicar Generals. Due to the death of Mgr Quirié, he went back to Bayeux, though only after kindly celebrating Mass at seven o’clock in our chapel.

He was supposed to celebrate the feast of our Holy Founder with us. This is what exile is like, constantly making us aspire for the Heavenly Homeland. His Excellency will soon pay us his canonical visitation, which is a very great honour and we rejoice in the news. How I love you, dearest little sisters! Only in heaven will you know how much boundless affection I have because on earth we are incapable of saying anything when our hearts are overflowing.

Sr Françoise-Thérèse


Thank you for the beautiful pictures. The one I’m sending back is for Sr Marie of the Trinity; it was meant for her.

I’ll write again on the 22nd, my darling eldest sister, because I want to celebrate your 70th birthday by offering you a bouquet of three Communions.

Has the obituary circular of revered Sr Aimée of Jesus been published? We love reading the edifying biographies of your Sisters; they are so well written.