J.M. + J.T.
Carmel of the Suffering Heart of Jesus, 20 August
My dear little sister Germaine of the Trinity,
Your kind letter and your confidences have made me very happy.
I so love, when you lift the veil of your soul for me, to enter into that private sanctuary where you live completely alone with Him who wants you all for Himself and who creates a beloved solitude within you for Himself.
Refresh Him there, my little Germaine, by resting in Him; listen to all that is being sung in His Soul, in His Heart; it is Love, Infinite Love that envelops us and wants us to share even here below in all His beatitudes.
The entire Trinity rests within us, this whole mystery that will be our vision in Heaven: let this be your cloister. My little sister, it makes me so happy when you tell me that your life is spent there.
Mine too: I am “Elizabeth of the Trinity,” that is, Elizabeth disappearing, losing herself, letting herself be invaded by the Three; you can see that we are very close in Them, we are completely one, aren’t we? From morning to night I do everything with you, and I think of you as the true sister of my soul.
I commend you to all our saints, and very particularly to our holy Mother Teresa and to Sister Thérèse of the Child Jesus…
Saint Elizabeth of the Trinity
Letter 172 to Germaine de Gemeaux
20 August 1903
Note: Editor Conrad de Meester indicates that Germaine de Gemeaux and the Gemeaux family were friends of Madame Catez and her daughters, who would visit them over summer vacations at the Gemeaux chateau in the village of the same name. Germaine was eight years younger than Elizabeth.
One day, with a very serious tone, Elizabeth asked eight-year-old Germaine what she wanted to be when she grew up. “I want to be a Carmelite!” Elizabeth rushed to tell her mother. Madame Catez, knowing that Madame Gemeaux was contrary to any such idea, promptly, firmly, and wisely told Elizabeth, “tais-toi” (be quiet).
We are grateful to the artist, Belita William, for her kind permission to share this painting with our readers. You can view more of Belita’s artworks at belitawilliamart.com.
Elizabeth of the Trinity, S 2003, The Complete Works of Elizabeth of the Trinity volume 2: Letters from Carmel, translated from the French by Nash, A, ICS Publications, Washington DC.