Print

From Léonie to Céline - November 18, 1890

From Léonie to Céline - November 18, 1890

Lisieux, 18th November 1890
Dearest little sister,

If only you knew how much I’m thinking of you on my days in exile; they are as sweet as they could possibly be, for our aunt is so good to me. I in turn am doing everything I can to make the absence of her two daughters less hard. With that in view I don’t leave her for a moment, I strive to be cheerful, and I think that all is well. God has willed it that, this week, I be deprived of the solitude of my bedroom, which is something I miss dreadfully; I offer this sacrifice up to Him and I content myself with telling Him many times during the day that I love Him, and fortunately the day goes by quite quickly. Only two more days and then I’ll see you again, beloved little sister. I miss you very much; I’m unable to hold back the tears as I write to you. If only you knew how much pleasure your letter brought me. I am happy to learn that soon we will have our darling papa near to us; I am of your opinion, it won’t be easy, but the task will prove very light and like you I am fully prepared to give all my strength, and even my life, if necessary. And you, little sister, will give me courage and I will do everything I can to make his last days happy. He has been absent from us for so long that it will seem a pleasure to us to lavish him with our care. But I dare not rejoice too soon, because how many times have we hoped but God’s time had not yet come. Who knows? He may wish to prolong our trial further. I’m inclined to believe this, and yet I have hope, because, after all, this iron cross will not last forever. You see, little sister, the best that we can do is to place ourselves and all that pertains to us in the Heart of Jesus; only there will we find courage to bear life’s sorrows, which we have certainly not been spared. But let us not complain, we are more than just Jesus’ friends, we are His Spouses, and that is why He is treating us in this way. In heaven we shall see our poor, deeply humbled father crowned with glory for eternity! Let us be his crown, let us make ourselves worthy of such a father . . .
I sent your note and your portrait to the Carmel on Monday [the painting of Mgr Robin]. I went to see Marie the following day. I spoke to her about our dear papa. She was very happy and my visit did me good. I needed it to regain strength for my solitary life. At times I feel very lonely, but you are going to return soon. You know that we have always been together and this is why I feel that time has gone so slowly and yet I haven’t been at all bored, I have been too busy for that.
My darling little sister, you know how much I love you. I’m speaking from the heart. I am delighted to know that you are happy and I am fully prepared to allow you this pleasure as many times as you desire it, even though I really miss you.

Back to the list