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From sr Genevieve (Celine) to sr Francoise-Therese (Leonie) - November 15-18, 1912

From sr Genevieve (Celine) to sr Francoise-Therese (Leonie) - November 15-18, 1912

+ Jesus                                15th – 18th November 1912

Darling little sister,

I thank you very much for your little note; it brought me great pleasure. We didn’t know that Jeanne was going to see you, otherwise our Mother would have retracted on the subject of the furniture, because it was the opportunity to mention it to her. And yet, perhaps God saw fit to let you say nothing, because perhaps it wasn’t the right time to bring it up.

You see, little Léonie, I’ll admit to you that, without meaning to, Jeanne is hurting us. She also feels hurt by us because we can’t come round to her way of seeing things. We feel that God is asking us to do the exact opposite of what Jeanne wants us to do.

I began writing this letter several days ago, and since then, I’ve discovered that our Mother and Sister Marie of the Sacred Heart have explained the situation to you and chartered your course of action concerning the furniture. It’s therefore pointless me continuing on the subject.

We’re sending you some samples from Thérèse’s bedroom via our Turn Sisters. There’s a piece of the linoleum that lines the floor completely, and a fragment of the wallpaper, which is washable, so if the pilgrims leave marks, we’ll be able to wash it. The bedroom walls are lined with paper panels, and around each panel is a plain blue paper border, with a gold band bridging the two types of paper. We’re sending you samples of everything. Please send them back via your Turn Sisters. The washroom has been turned into a sacristy and lined with dark blue paper decorated with gold crosses. There are adhesives decorating the windows, and pious figures. In short, it’s a real little chapel. Ask the Turn Sisters for information about the staircase, hall, fireplace and garden.

Dear little Léonie, believe me when I say that we’re having a great deal of trouble completing this task. The only reason we’re doing it is to please God, because those who should be supporting us are causing us nothing but problems. No one is a prophet in their own country. How true this is. Just imagine, on 30th September, when hundreds of people from both the town and afar came to her burial place, Jeanne wasn’t there. She is refusing to go with the flow and, as she is living in a totally different world, a world of criticisms and prejudices, it’s not surprising that she doesn’t understand us. But in the words of St Jerome, “We do not toil for our contemporaries but for the future generations.” I think that the devil is behind this ordeal and that Jeanne and Francis are merely oblivious instruments. This is more than likely because there’s no other explanation for their apparent shame, so to speak, of us and of Thérèse. You’d think that we ought to be hiding in a cellar, and that the boutique ought to be at the end of an alleyway, in a room that you can only enter via the back door. It makes no sense. What will they say when we build a chapel to Thérèse and a shrine? I send you my love, darling little sister.

Your Céline

Sr Geneviève of St Teresa u.c.n.

I offer my affectionate respects to your dear Mothers.