Celine's letter to Leonie (August 15, 1917) giving details of her role in the second exhumation of the body of her sister, St.Therese of Lisieux
Wednesday, August 16, 2017 at 10:20PM
Maureen O'Riordan


The cover of this coffret was sculpted from wood taken from the second coffin of St. Therese, exhumed on August 9, 1917

      A hundred years ago, on August 15, 1917, St. Therese's sister Celine wrote to their sister Leonie to tell her every detail of her participation in the second exhumation of St. Therese's body.  This letter is quite extraordinary.  Please read it here at the Web site of the Archives of the Carmel of Lisieux.

     The second exhumation of the body of St. Therese lasted for two days.  On Thursday, August 9, 1917, in the presence of the bishop and church dignitaries, the coffin was exhumed. For safekeeping, it was secured overnight in the cemetery chapel.  The next day, Friday, August 10, the two appointed doctors were to examine and "recognize" St. Therese's bones.  Her sister Celine (Sister Genevieve), along with another Carmelite, received permission to leave the enclosure to assist at this second ceremony; she was to wrap the bones of her sister in white cloth and place them in a reliquary.

     At the end of her letter Celine promises to send Leonie "the report as soon as it is published."  Thanks to the generosity of the Archives of the Carmel of Lisieux, we have already translated and published this report, which was published by the diocese of Bayeux on August 15, 1917

Article originally appeared on Saint Therese of Lisieux (http://www.thereseoflisieux.org/).
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