From sr Francoise-Therese (Leonie) to sr Marie of the Sacred Heart – May 26, 1932

From sr Francoise-Therese (Leonie) to sr Marie of the Sacred Heart – May 26, 1932

V+J! From our monastery in Caen this 26th May 1932


My beloved eldest sister,

It is from a chaise-longue that I’m writing to wish you a happy feast day. Even so, I consider I’m very fortunate not to be in bed, as I was for four days. So here I am, now lame too. That’s one more thing we have in common, darling sister. But the difference is that my cross is made of straw compared to yours. Yet fortunately for poor little me, the important thing is to suffer generously and patiently, which I’m trying to do with the grace of God. My right knee has been playing tricks on me for thirty three years, and eventually the inevitable catastrophe struck; it needed to be cut open right to the knee cap. It’s been a week since the operation took place. There’s a gaping wound and it should heal on its own, but it will take at least six weeks. Let me quickly reassure you by saying that the suffering I’ve been enduring is nothing in comparison to the torture I had to go through when my ingrown toenails were torn off. Then, the plasters were extremely painful and the ones on my knee are nothing in comparison. I’m in hardly any pain now. What frustrates me the most is knowing I won’t be able to say the Mass responses for a long time, because my knee will take months to recover. I say “Fiat!!!” My little companion and my nurse, Sr Marguerite-Agnès and dear Didine, join me in wishing you a very happy feast day. The two little Visitandines will take Communion for you. I will be sixty-nine years old on the feast of the Sacred Heart. I assure you, it’s a sorry sight to see five of us going to Holy Communion in wheelchairs. It’s never been seen before. But blessed be these wheelchairs, because they allow us to go and meet our Beloved. Without Him, we wouldn’t be able to live, let alone suffer. We are being cared for and coddled ever so well, and with so much affection! Yes, we certainly are repaid a hundredfold here below. You haven’t received the letter that Sr Marguerite-Agnès should have sent you from Paris for her sister Violette, have you? Praise be to God! It would have caused you a lot of fuss for nothing. I’m currently looking at the pink little picture of Jesus that I had when I was ill. He is still pressing His little bunch of grapes into His chalice, sweetening the golden juice. That is the only thing He loves. When the chalice is full, Jesus will take His grapes, that is you and tiny me, away to His beautiful paradise.

Our revered Mother is enclosing a little flower in my letter since I can’t go and pick one from the garden. From your little sister who cherishes you and our two little sisters

Sr Françoise-Thérèse