Journals and Letters week 12: Hardship and consolation
The reading picks up after the fire at Saint Mary’s destroyed the barns and granary, other provisions and all the farm equipment. Mother Theodore pours out her heart to Bishop Bouvier, her trusted confidante, letting him know her fears, her burdens as superior, her feelings of depression and yet another disagreement with Bishop de la Hilandiere over the admittance of Miss Bernard.
All of those realities seem to be relieved somewhat by the fact that she finally hears from Mother Mary. As Mother Theodore wrote, “not having her approbation —that was the source of my greatest misery.” How my heart ached for her as I read this letter! She must have felt so responsible and at the same time so helpless.
Some favorite quotes
The letter to the sisters at Jasper is the favorite of many sisters because it has so many gems of Mother Theodore’s quotes. I’m sure you can pick them out because they are so familiar!
As I read these letters I could not help wonder how, with all these worries and frustrations, Mother Theodore ever had the courage to be thinking about returning to France, which meant enduring that horrific ocean voyage a second time. It is one thing to experience such hardship and adversity and nearly lose one’s life, but to put herself in a position to confront that pain, danger and near-death experience again must have taken tremendous trust in Providence and commitment to the mission!
And so we look forward to the second journal of travel.
Join the conversation
What feelings of Mother Theodore did you identify with in these pages?
What’s a favorite quote of yours from the letter to the sisters at Jasper? Why?
Next week > page 103 Part III the Second Journal of Travel to page 112 after letter