From sr Genevieve (Celine) to sr Francoise-Therese (Leonie) - February 11-12, 1917

From sr Genevieve (Celine) to sr Francoise-Therese (Leonie) - February 11-12, 1917

+ Jesus                                                                                         11th and 12th February 1917

Darling little sister

You must be wondering why I still haven’t sent you anything, but it’s too cold to continue making enlargements or to take even a single photo. The water freezes in front of my eyes in my little laboratory and every morning I have to make a full inspection and take the frozen bottles down to the kitchen.  

The weather is indeed very harsh and I have chilblains on my cheeks. However, we’re not suffering too badly; there’s a fire in the warming room and I go down there to work. You’d never think that there were several of us there because it’s so quiet that you could hear a pin drop.

Fr Dubosq came to explain the reason for the delay. It’s because Fr Quirié decided that the weather was too harsh for the court to hear the last witnesses during the February holidays. We were deeply upset to see the Process postponed from holiday to holiday like this, but Fr Dubosq told us that he would make up for the lost time and that he wouldn’t be the one running behind schedule. If the second copy of the Process files is finished, Mgr de Teil will take them both to Rome in time for Easter. Yet there are still 2000 pages left to copy out because the gentlemen were told too late that 2 copies were required. It’s a very complicated and long procedure.

I don’t know whether you’ve heard the strange story about Jeanne, but you mustn’t talk about it with her. Believe it or not, after all that has happened, she has ceded the house in Alençon to us. Here’s how it came about:

About 2 months ago, strange noises could be heard in her house. Every night, although they weren’t sleeping on the same floor, little Marie Clement and the maid would hear a racket coming from Jeanne and Solange’s bedroom. The windows would slam shut, and there would be general commotion. They mentioned it to Jeanne, and she forbade them from bringing up the subject with her again. Yet as the noises continued, frightening them, they confided in Mother St Ignace, who came to talk to Jeanne about it, suggesting that it could be a soul in Purgatory. Jeanne, who thought more about it than she cared to admit, was staggered. What was going through her mind? The fact remains that she wrote to our Mother saying that she wanted to concede the house in Alençon to us without further ado. We didn’t understand the hurry at first, but later on, we noticed that the dates matched up and put two and two together. You see, she couldn’t rest until the contract was signed. Since then, she hasn’t said anything about the noises. They must have stopped.

I see I’ve run out of room, and yet, on that note, I wanted to tell you that we made a few remarks to her concerning the photos that were causing us so much trouble, and she promised us that she wouldn’t show them to anyone else from now on, but hasn’t given them back to us. We know that she would give those that we dislike so much to anyone who requested them and who wanted to make copies, so have we gained anything if she doesn’t show them to anyone and gives them back when she’s finished with them?

We’ve just given his Lordship a lovely enlarged retouched photo showing Thérèse as a novice. She no longer looks like Berthe Delafosse, I assure you. His Lordship is delighted, and now any old unrealistic traits have been covered up.

Goodbye, darling little sister. I will probably take my retreat around the 24th anniversary of my Profession. I send all my love. Your little sister

Geneviève of the Holy Face u.c.n.

By Mother Agnes of Jesus:

I wanted to write to you, little sister and beloved daughter, and then didn’t find the time. The “Poplar” will speak for me. I put my whole heart into it, a heart that belongs entirely to you.

Your little sister and Mamma