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From sr Marie of the Eucharist to Mme La Néele - June 29, 1896.

 

From sr Marie of the Eucharist to Mme La Néele - June 29, 1896.

+ Jesus J.M.J.T. 29th June 96

Dear little Jeanne,

How your letter amused us! It was very different from a running sprint. Mishaps like this are always happening to Francis, I beg you, don’t ever stop recounting them to us. They are just too funny. Our Mother has read out your letter at recreation twice and the idea of seeing Francis dragging little Cerbère (dog at La Musse) after him often stays with us all day, and when I’m by myself I burst out [lv°] laughing. You wouldn’t believe it but at the Carmel we have as much fun as at La Musse. You will never guess how I entered our cell yesterday. The story is quite strange for a Carmelite, and deserves to be recounted: at recreation our Mother sent me to fetch your letter for the second time, so I started exclaiming: this letter will wear my legs out. You know that the distances at the Carmel are sometimes long, it’s not a small house and to reach our cell [2r°] I have to cross the whole dormitory. On hearing my comment, a Sister said: “No, you won’t wear out your legs, I will fetch you a ladder, that way you will be there in no time. I took her at her word and we set off in search of a ladder. We carefully positioned the ladder in front of our cell window and climbing like a cat I went in through “the window”, on the first floor, if you please (in summer the Sisters had recreation in the garden, from 11 o’clock to midday. It seems that on this 28th June they were gathered near the statue called the Heart of Mary. Marie Guérin’s cell was almost opposite the kitchen. Ascending by ladder was therefore the quickest route. Note the spontaneity of the scene, which was presided over by the nevertheless prudent Mother Marie de Gonzague...). I was ready to come down by the ladder but our Mother was too afraid of [2v°] me ending up slipping and so I took the normal route and the staircase.

Is it hot in Francis’ hot land?... I think it’s now the Carmel that deserves this nickname. I can tell you I am lost as to what season it is. I often ask myself this question: Is it hot today? Will it get any hotter?... It’s a real puzzle for me, I‘ve lost my bearings. And yet I have a thermometer in the crucifix that I carry against my chest under our black habit (“devotional” crucifix, because it was only after profession (25th March 1897 for Marie) that a Carmelite received her “official” crucifix). I have a talent, when it is hot, of soaking our whole habit with sweat, so I look at my crucifix and if it is full of water droplets I say to myself: it’s hot today. Well, you wouldn’t believe it but I really don’t suffer from the heat, it isn’t tiring me out as in previous years, I am like the little birds that take dust baths, I flap my little wings and I fly despite the great heat, the more I work, the more I forget that the temperature is a little stormy.

I send you and Francis a big kiss. Give my love to [lv°tv] Papa and Mama.

Your little sister

Marie of the Eucharist

u.c.n.

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