From sr Genevieve (Celine) to sr Francoise-Therese (Leonie) - September 25, 1923

From sr Genevieve (Celine) to sr Francoise-Therese (Leonie) - September 25, 1923

+ Jesus                                                             Carmel of Lisieux

                                                                       25th September 1923


Dear little sister,

It’s been a very long time since I last wrote to you. I’m still very busy with my chores, which is why I have very little leisure time. I wasn’t able to take my February retreat until you took yours a few weeks ago. It provided one more link between us and I thought of you, darling sister.

Jesus didn’t comfort me. I was in a spiritual desert. But that doesn’t matter as long as He is pleased!

In early September, we had a small transfer of some of our Blessed sister’s relics. We had made the mistake of placing them directly in the large reliquary from Brazil, and they proved impossible to remove. Following the theft attempts that we had, the Postulator advised us not to leave anything that was precious and could arouse greed inside the reliquary. His Lordship therefore nominated a Commission. Rome sent their own. When the three keys were reunited, we removed the relics in their silk cloths. They have been temporarily placed in the small sculpted oak coffin from the 2nd exhumation, and the coffin has been taken to the oratory in little Thérèse’s cell. There it is, surrounded with flowers and lights, like on a little altar of repose.

Meanwhile, the Brazilian reliquary has gone to Paris, where a separate inner chest is being made for it. This way, we’ll be able to remove the chest from the Brazilian reliquary when we please. This reliquary will be used for expositions and processions. The rest of the time, the chest will be placed in a pretty mahogany reliquary decorated with gilt bronze and will lie in the base of the large reliquary. We’ll try not to let this be known to dissuade theft attempts.

You know that many of the relics are in the Holy Body, so we have divided our treasures.

It brings me great joy to currently have my little Thérèse right next to this cell. I often go and kiss the reliquary, but there’s never the slightest sign of friendship! This silence is no doubt covering up many graces, because she had ever such a good heart!!!

This evening, we were joined by a very distinguished postulant. She is from the high society of Montpellier. It seems she has a strong vocation. She is very tall and very personable; that’s all I know for the moment. “True merit is recognised when one’s back is against the wall.” We won’t know what we’ve got until later. When she entered the monastery, her venerable father knelt down to bless her.

Darling little Léonie, we’ll speak again at Christmas! Pray for your little sister, for she too wants to become a saint.

Sr Geneviève of the Holy Face u.c.n. 

We’ve read part of the report detailing your celebrations. It’s ever so interesting and well written!

Written by Sr Marie of the Sacred Heart:

Hello darling little sister. Since Sr Geneviève is writing to you, I’ll make do with sending you a great big kiss from afar, although I’m very nearby in the heart of sweet Jesus.

Sr M. of the S.H.