Louise, Letter 0426. (To the Sisters of the Hospital of Angers)

Francisco Javier Fernández ChentoWritings of Louise de MarillacLeave a Comment

Author: Louise de Marillac · Translator: Louise Sullivan, D.C. · Year of first publication: 1991 · Source: Spiritual Writings of Louise de Marillac. Correspondence and Thoughts. Translated from the original French edition Sainte Louise de Marillac: Ecrits Spirituels.
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(August 1640)

My dear Sisters,

In my mind’s eye I see myself now among you as you serve supper to our dear masters. O my God! What a happiness you experience! Unworthy as I am, I can know it only in desire. Courage then, my dear Sisters! Let us serve with hearts filled with the pure love of God which enables us always to love the roses amidst the thorns. How short is this life of pain! How long, love-filled and desirable will be our blessed eternity! But we can attain this only by following Jesus who constantly labored and suffered. And even He could not have led us to this had His perseverance not led Him to death on the Cross. O my Sisters, are we to spare ourselves and thus deceive ourselves? Oh let us be on our guard against this! If we work for 49 years’ and then if during the fiftieth, when God calls us, we have ceased to do so, we will have accomplished nothing during our lifetime. Perseverance then, my dear Sisters, must be the last flower in our crown since we must acquire it in the final moment of our lives by the grace and love of God. Would we not be miserable creatures if self-love or attachment to passing things prevented us from attaining this vitally important perseverance. O my good Sisters, ask God to grant me His mercy so that my cowardice may not deprive me of His love for all eternity. How often I have merited this punishment because of my sins.

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