From sr Francoise-Therese (Leonie) to Mother Agnes of Jesus – January 17, 1937

From sr Francoise-Therese (Leonie) to Mother Agnes of Jesus – January 17, 1937

V + J! From our Caen monastery this 17th January 1937

Beloved little Mother,

Your feast day is overshadowed by the illness of our beloved Holy Father. We owe him for bringing such great glory to Thérèse, and I can tell that she in turn is preparing to carry his beautiful soul to heaven. He will be escorted by all the Saints and the Blessed he has canonised, with the Star of his Pontificate leading them.

Darling little Mamma, we know by experience that it’s the same with all joy in exile. Even the purest joys are tainted with an often bitter sadness, otherwise we would think we were in paradise. Our piece of heaven here below is Jesus in the Eucharist, where His presence is undoubtedly in faith, but real as we wait until we can see our unique Beloved in the eternal face to face. We constantly meet in His Sacred Heart through the Communions I offer Him for my beloved trio, especially when your dear feast days come round. And so it is, little Mamma, that in the three Communions I took for you, I asked Jesus to shower you with His greatest and most valuable favours, and to lavish tender caresses on his cherished little Lamb, so that she might have a foretaste of the heavenly Homeland.

All four of us are fused so tightly together in sweet Jesus’ Heart that you will inevitably see your Léonie when you are hugged by our two darling little sisters.

Concerning the grace Thérèse received on Christmas night, my memories of it are so muddled that, in all truth, I don’t think I took notice of it. I had left the Poor Clares that year, on 12th December 1886, and was depressed on so many accounts that it wasn’t certain I would ever recover. What an escapade! But God had mercy on me. He gazed on the extreme lowliness of His insignificant little creature and made her His Bride.

It’s childish of me, darling little Mamma, but I’d like to see a programme of the Congress. Just one will do.

Once again I affectionately wish you a happy feast day. Srs Marguerite-Agnès and Joseph-Marie do the same.

Your little sister and child

Sr Françoise-Thérèse


I love the delightful picture of the little lamb running headlong into danger to take refuge in Jesus’ loving arms. He resembles Thérèse as a child. Is it one of little Céline’s paintings?