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From sr Genevieve (Celine) to sr Francoise-Therese (Leonie) - June 1, 1938

From sr Genevieve (Celine) to sr Francoise-Therese (Leonie) - June 1, 1938

J. + M.

P.C.                                                                       Carmel of Lisieux 1st June 1938

Darling little sister,

I’m writing on behalf of your three little sisters to wish you a happy and holy birthday. 75 is a ripe old age! May our dear little saint and holy parents shower you with graces and help you bear the troubles of old age, which unfortunately are set to increase rather than decrease. Our hearts are with you, and we’re closely united to you in prayer.

The private celebration in honour of our dear eldest sister’s fiftieth anniversary was a very touching affair. His Lordship said Mass in the infirmary, then when the time came for the Credo, he turned to address a few sincere and appropriate words to her. During Communion, in front of the Host that his Lordship held out to her, Sister Marie of the Sacred Heart renewed her vows. She sat in her wheelchair between our Mother and me. We placed her crown of roses on her head, and her blessed walking stick was by her side. Afterwards, the Community sung her the pretty poem that Our Mother wrote for her jubilee in 1936. There were once again a few gifts from other Carmelite convents and friends. Our Jubilarian came to the refectory, and her chair was placed near Our Mother. She had her own little table so that she could eat without leaving her chair.

All that’s over now and there’s no point in hoping that she’ll live to see any more celebrations here below. The next will be in heaven. She is often plagued with ailments now, which worry us because they are frequent.

Ourdear Mother has just recovered from a bout of neuralgia in her ears and neck, which lasted a few days. As it was keeping her awake at night, we feared she would lose her health. She is better now. Meanwhile, I had gout in my knee and had to use a walking stick. You should have seen the three of us; we were all “cripples”! If you had been here, you would no doubt have made a fourth! It just goes to show, little Thérèse’s sisters are shaky on their foundations.

Sr Marie of the Sacred Heart thanks you kindly for your little letter. She still cherishes her Léonie, though we won’t let her outdo us for all that!

As for Jeanne’s inheritance, there’s no hope. Her wealth didn’t come from our uncle’s side, so he couldn’t dispose of it after his death. Jeanne was free to do as she wished with it. Poor Jeanne! She cut all the ropes that moored us to her very well. Now she can see things clearly and no doubt regrets having trampled our affection underfoot.

Pierre Leriche, Adolphe’s grandson, is going to become a priest on 29th June. Pray that he will be a holy one. We are keeping our distance. Our Mother will simply give him a pall when he comes here and says one of his first Masses.

I’m sending you the little picture that I painted for your birthday. It shows your little boat riding the trough of the golden wave and approaching the port. All three of us send you all our love. We shall take Communion for you on the 3rd.

Sr Geneviève of the Holy Face

and St Teresa u.c.n.