the Carmel
From Sister Marie‑Dosithée Guérin to her brother Isidore – February 8, 1863

GUERIN Marie-Louise, Sr Marie-Dosithée
GUERIN Isidore


From Sister Marie-Dosithée Guérin to her brother Isidore.
Mr Isidore Guérin ‑ rue St Hyacinthe St Michel ‑ Hotel Senlis 15 ‑ Paris
                                                                                                 of our Mother of Le Mans
                                                                                                    February 8, 1863
Very Dear Brother
I am writing to you now because you know that during Lent we do not ordinarily do this without great necessity. First I would like to give you some advice which I believe you need, I am all the more encouraged to do so as I know that you always take it very well and that you even ask for it. So, although you are in Paris, you have no less soul than when you were in Alencon; I beg you not to lose it in the amusements of the carnival like so many unfortunate young people who are going to immerse themselves in it, and perhaps on emerging from it, enter their eternity; sudden deaths are very frequent, you are no more exempt from them than the others; but when it wouldn't be and you would have another 40 years of living in all the pleasures and happiness imaginable, without fear or worry, however it would end and soon, and the interminable eternity would begin with all its horrors, its despairs, its *[1v°] lacerations, this gnawing worm which leaves neither truce nor rest and which tears its victim pitilessly; this very memory of the pleasure of yesteryear would add still more to all these torments; but on the contrary, a life spent in the practice of the most austere penance also passes, that of the ancient patriarchs who lived 900 years is long past, and the length of their penance seems to them today a dream gone, eternity s is open for them, and they all taste joys that will never end, that no setback can snatch from them, in short, inexpressible sweetness that I would like to see you share. What madness to cling to transient and perishable things that we leave at the moment of possessing them, when however we can get there. So be wise while there is time so as not to incur remorse from which I would like to exempt you if I could.
I don't think it's asking too great a sacrifice of you during Lent to go to the sermon at least twice a week, not to go to any shows and to go to mass at least once a week. bass; these are not too great austerities to impose on you, a great number of holy souls are going to do a rigorous penance, and you sinner, you will not do any; you have to at least give something to the friendship you've always had for me, so I hope that *[2r°] you won't refuse me what I'm asking of you.
Zélie wrote to me recently, she tells me that my father is going to live near her in the house of Mr. Cormaille (17, rue du Pont-Neuf, house next to Mr. more or less at home, that will reassure me, he will have a little consolation in his family. Your little goddaughter is not yet going alone (Pauline is then 17 months old) she doesn't dare venture, she is afraid of falling; If you wanted to go to ND des Victoires to put a candle for her, Zélie would be very happy.
You may not know that M. l'Abbé Tessier died of a stroke during two days of illness.
Farewell, my dear little Brother, farewell until Easter; write to me before Lent and promise me what I ask of you. I believe you have enough of a word to keep your promises.
I `m kissing you with all my heart
your loving sister
Sr. M. Dosithee Guérin
of the Von Ste Marie
I did not receive the photograph that you announced to me, that is to say that I will receive it later, one of our sisters is kind enough to repaint the little Jesus who was not very suitable, but without that *[2v°] she is very pretty and gives me great pleasure; it will be a little souvenir for which I am very grateful to you. In closing, I again recommend that you eat good food if you want to acclimatize. I would very much like you to observe the abstinence *[2 r°tv] prescribed by the Church and that you do fat only on permitted days.
I have just received your letter, fortunately it had not yet left. My health is very good, I wish yours were as good; I think you'd do much better to stay in a healthier house, otherwise you'll fall ill and it won't be long.
*[1 r°tv]You no longer talk about being an intern in a hospital; and you say that my Father must take on his capital; my child, ordinarily things are not done that way. So try to save as much as possible while eating very well, because that's something I really care about. 

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