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From sr Genevieve (Celine) to sr Francoise-Therese (Leonie) - August 7, 1916

From sr Genevieve (Celine) to sr Francoise-Therese (Leonie) - August 7, 1916

Dear little Léonie,

I thank you for your feast day wishes and for the Communions that you are taking for me. Nothing could bring me greater pleasure. Your little flowers smell so lovely and mean a great deal to me. Life will go by quickly and soon we’ll be in the meadows of heaven where, together, we’ll pick our flowers. Rejoice, little sister, to have picked these in exile, from a grove that is not the Carmel’s, because you know that Thérèse wanted to go to Hanoi expressly to experience the exile of the heart there, and to be far, far, far away from those she loved. God did not hear her prayer, it’s true, because He knew that the exile of the heart can be suffered and felt even when one has plenty and has every possible satisfaction. I told you this in a recent letter, for I’ve experienced it myself. Read it again. It’s like that little glass of vivid red liquid that we gave Thérèse to drink when she was ill. It looked delicious to the Sisters, who were unaware that it was the bitterest medicine of them all. So I understand those who choose to join a monastery that is far away from their families. They are wise, very wise, and spare themselves a great many sorrows.

However, as we don’t always understand this truth, it is commendable, very commendable in fact, to accept a lot that is less attractive than those of other people, and God counts this as though we really were deprived of something. He allows us to do so in order that we have sacrifices to offer Him and we must be like misers, protective of our treasures. We have only this life to give things to Jesus. Soon it will be His turn.

You asked me for news of Fr Flamérion. Here’s what happened:

I told you how we believed only a third of everything he told us anyway. Many things seemed fishy to us and little by little we stopped attaching importance to what he said, although without letting him see this, out of politeness.

But then one fine day we saw what he was driving at. The priest wanted one of his possessed victims to join us as a postulant. The devil had said that he would leave her the moment she joined! The possessed person apparently has a mission to accomplish, like Joan of Arc. Only by joining our convent could she fulfil it!! Our Mother and the Council refused. Father F. threatened us in the name of Our Lord and the Bl. Virgin. Our Mother wrote to the bishopric. His Lordship and Fr Dubosq supported her and told her how to respond. Upon the advice of the possessed person, Fr F. withdrew his testimony from the Process, and wrote to Rome. Rome demanded an explanation. Fr Dubosq sent a report. Fr F. was discredited, and we were endorsed.

We’ve seen Fr F. since then - we manage to divert his thoughts from the subject of “possession” when we see him - but as soon as he leaves us, he goes back to his old way of seeing things. To conclude, those who exorcise, even when it’s on behalf of the Church like Fr F., who was nominated Grand Exorcist of France by Cardinal Amette, should be wary. If they’re not careful, they become as though bewitched and are easily tricked. Another priest, the Director of the Diocesan Missionaries of Vendée, who is a saint, was caught out in the same way. You know what happened to Father Surin. So, it’s no longer a third of what he says that we believe, but a mere hundredth. The devil is a liar and we don’t want to hear any more about exorcisms. Keep that to yourself, of course. – The Court will resume sessions in September.  

Concerning the stereoscope, it’s impossible, I’ve tried. The shots have to be taken with 2 lenses, as though they were 2 eyes. It’s the small difference between the 2 eyes that creates the impression of relief. Otherwise, you simply get an enlargement, like with a magnifying glass.

Goodbye, darling little sister. I love you and send you a heartfelt kiss.

Your little Céline, Sr Marie of the Holy Face, Céline, Geneviève of St Teresa!!!  

Don’t hold this against me, but I would never be able to write to you at a fixed time. It’s alright for Sr M. of the S.H. but when it’s time for me to write, I need at least a week to mull things over.