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From sr Genevieve (Celine) to sr Francoise-Therese (Leonie) - August 8, 1937

From sr Genevieve (Celine) to sr Francoise-Therese (Leonie) - August 8, 1937

J. + M.

P.C.                                                                                 Carmel of Lisieux 8th August 1937

Darling little Léonie,

Your feast day letter spoke volumes to all three of us, because we can clearly see that our dear little Thérèse is teaching you at the same time as us, and that she is giving us the exact same lessons. Yes, “our hearts and souls are the same and moulded into one in sweet Jesus’ Heart.”

You can be sure, darling little Sister, that if you feel inspired to ask for the one single grace of living and dying in a pure act of love, it is because God wants to grant it to you, for “He has us desire and request what He wants to give us.” This is certain, and knowing it is a great comfort.

In fact, nothing is more true or worthwhile. “It encapsulates everything,” as you so well said. O little sister, never have I felt so close to you as I do now. Is it because you’ll soar to heaven soon?

Yet it can only be “soon” for all four of us, because given our age, there can’t be many more years of exile left.

Our dear eldest sister seems the closest to going. She is not sick, but increasingly frail. She has wounds on her legs that require time-consuming treatments every day, and her appetite hasn’t returned, which is remarkable given that she had a hearty one before. Yet if only you knew how beautiful her soul is, and how it shines with new intensity every day. If only you knew how, amid her tears of sorrow, her virtues grow brighter! We can sense that little Thérèse is clothing her in her own virtues, the ones that shone so brightly in her. And we cannot doubt that she is doing the same thing for all of us. As I’ve just said, I see it in you, too.  

Dear “Little Mother” is still the most alert of us. If only you knew what a credit she is to us, because the flag has to be flown high: "noblesse oblige".

I myself am still so-so. I have sore kidneys as soon as I’m the slightest bit tired, and rheumatism in either the right side or the left. My arm is better. The pain has subsided, but keeps threatening to come back. Still, I wouldn’t complain if it grew no worse.

You asked me on which day in July Thérèse received her grace. I don’t know, but I think that Sr Marie-Emmanuel worked it out and mentioned it in the Annals.

Yes, our Congress was a great success in every respect. What comforted us the most was the tribute paid to Jesus in the Eucharist, and the glorification of religion in France. Cardinal Verdier says that it was an “event”. He said as much in a letter. And everyone is saying that this event is of wide scope. Praise be to God! Now, darling little sister, I send you all my love, thanking you again for your letter and little flowers, whose scent I’m still enjoying as I write to you.

Your little Céline 

Sr Geneviève of the Holy Face

u. c. n.

Please wish your dear Mother a happy feast day and give her my love.