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The Spiritual Letters of Venerable Francis Libermann

Fr. Francis Libermann (1802-1852) the convert Jew from Saverne, France, was an unlikely choice to guide others in the way of Christian living. As a failed seminarian and epileptic living off the charity of others, he sought only the consolation of God's love. His brokenness lived with gentle serenity inspired those who knew him at the Seminary of St. Sulpice, Paris. Many would seek him out for spiritual advice, consolation and encouragement.
They found in him an attentive ear, a warm heart, and sure guidance in helping them discern God's plan unfolding in their lives. The attention he could give and the advice he offered flowed from his own conversion experience at the time of his baptism in 1826 and the ensuing long struggle with epilepsy that barred his path to the priesthood.
Libermann persevered with great gentleness and serenity along the path he felt sure God had marked out for him. Fifteen years later, in 1841, he was not only ordained but his desire to establish a missionary congregation was approved. He re-dedicated himself to the mission God had for him: to bring the Good News of God's Love to the most abandoned of his time, the redeemed slaves of the French colonies. Seven years later, in 1848, the congregation he founded joined with the already legally established Congregation of the Holy Spirit. Fr. Libermann became its 11th Superior General. He died four years later, in Paris, on February 2, 1852.
Following his death, many petitioned the Church to beatify this saintly man. The Archdiocese of Paris opened an investigation in 1867 and gathered information on the life and teaching of Fr. Libermann. This search included the gathering of his letters. Subsequently, a decree issued in 1886 by the Congregation for Saints in Rome approved of his writings. In 1910, Pope St. Pius X declared the heroism of his life and named him ‘Venerable'.
Fortunately, we have today a rich resource of Venerable Libermann's spiritual doctrine offered not in abstract form but through letters addressed to particular persons in particular situations.
Venerable Francis Libermann's ministry of accompaniment of others continues today through the many letters he wrote to a wide circle of correspondents. With those, who first received these letters, we too can benefit from his wisdom, holiness, and guidance.

Fr. Walter van der Putte, C.S.Sp., edited and translated four hundred and forty-one of these letters for publication in five volumes of the Duquesne Studies, Spiritan Series (1962-1966). They constitute a correspondence to seventy-four lay people, clergy and religious. In some cases, there is only one letter; in others, there are many more.
Each correspondent is on his or her particular journey of discipleship and looks to Libermann to help them discern the Spirit of God at work in their lives. This he does with consummate skill and great devotion. As you read on you will draw closer to the spiritual treasure the letters contain and find in them a wisdom and consolation to accompany you in your way of Christian discipleship.

1.   Louise des Loges: Trust in God and you will not be disappointed

Begin reading with Louise des Loges, one of five girls who heard God's call to serve in the new apostolate to the much-neglected peoples of the French colonies and along the West Coast of Africa. She consulted Fr. Tisserant, a member of Fr. Libermann's Holy Heart of Mary Congregation, about her missionary vocation. Following Fr. Libermann's advice Louise entered the Institute of the Immaculate Conception of Castres, a Society dedicated to the new mission outreach. She took the name of Sister Aurelia.

  • Libermann encourages Louise to open her heart to the Lord in perfect freedom and peace. "He who feeds even the smallest animals will provide what is necessary for those who desire to serve Him."
  • She is not to rely on her own efforts, which lead nowhere. Rather, she is to "cling to Jesus," the "bridegroom of her soul" in the confidence that he provides "sweetness, love, and peace" for those who desire to serve him.
  • Her weaknesses do not prevent her from sharing in God's love. Rather "true self-knowledge brings with it an increase of love for God."
  • In the power of God's love Louise will "leap over" all the obstacles holding her back from following the "impulses of grace" and walk confidently in God's love.

Read the nine letters Fr. Libermann wrote to her between 1842 and 1844 offering her encouragement to follow the call she had experienced.

Letters to Louise des Loges
In The Spiritual Letters of the Venerable Francis Libermann.
Volume One: Letters to Religious Sisters and Aspirants.

2.   Rose Lapique (Sister Paule): Allowing God's grace to work in us

Rose, like Louise, also wanted to give herself totally to God in the service of those most in need through the new missionary outreach of the time of which Libermann was a leader. She sought direction from him. He outlined a daily timetable for her as she considered joining the Blue Nuns of Castres.

  • Rose should begin each day by consciously opening her heart in love to God. "Offer Him your day and prepare to serve Him faithfully . . . remain recollected and at peace. Avoid being tense and over-eager."
  • Sr. Paule needed to develop patience. This would come from a growing trust in God's love for her. "Remain in your lowliness before God and accept with gratitude, like a beggar, whatever He wishes to give you."
  • Libermann identifies self-love as the source of her anxiety. She is not to force herself to be holy. God will bestow this upon her, if she can only let go of being over-concerned with her progress in her spiritual life. "If he leaves you spiritually dry, accept this as His holy Will."
  • God is the primary agent in our quest for holiness. She is to allow the good Master to lead her. He will accomplish great things in her. "Do not make efforts of mind or heart to remain recollected or to produce affections for, or good sentiments towards Our Lord."

Read the six letters Fr. Libermann wrote to her between 1842 and 1847 both before she entered the convent and while in the convent preparing to go on mission to West Africa.

3.   Letters to Missionary Sisters:    Preparing for Mission

Libermann wrote three of these letters to Sr. Aloysia. The other is written jointly to the four sisters at Castres (Paule, Aurelia, Aloysia, and Cecile) preparing to go on mission to Guinea, West Africa where, Libermann warns them, they will encounter many trials and difficulties. They are not to be in a hurry, but rather, take care to prepare themselves well for the challenge ahead of them.

  • They are to be at peace in themselves and train themselves in all the religious virtues. They are not to force God to accept their services as they would wish, but rather, serve Him as he desires. "He is the Master, you are the servants . . . It belongs to Him to give the orders; it is your task to obey."
  • The best way they can prepare themselves for Africa is to grow in holiness. "The holier you are, the greater will be our capacity for serving God and saving souls." They open themselves to God's grace through practice of the virtues, particularly, "humility, mildness, charity, the spirit of prayer, and crowing all, obedience."
  • They will strengthen the spirit of their vocation by loving the Lord with all their heart and with generosity. "Sacrifice for Him all that is agreeable to you. When troubled by pain or temptation, bear them with love, peace and patience."
  • They are to remain calm and peaceful in God's loving embrace. Their hearts are to be attuned to the divine heart and only desire what God desires. Libermann warns, "When we allow our desires to drive us on forcibly, we rarely have peace of soul and our intention is rarely pure."

Read these four letters written between 1844 and 1847 while the recipients were preparing themselves for the West African mission of Guinea.

4.   Mother Marie De Villeneuve:    A Saint Rebuked

Mother Marie founded the diocesan congregation of Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception (the "Blue Nuns") at Castres in 1836 to "go where the voice of the poor calls us." Fr. Libermann's first communication with Mother Marie was in relation to the missionary vocation of Sisters Paule, Aurelia, Aloysia, and Cecile (see correspondence above) who were among the first sisters to open a convent in Africa, at Dakar, in 1849.

Mother Marie died two years after Libermann on October 2, 1854. Pope Francis canonized her in 2015 according to her baptismal name, St. Jeanne-Émilie de Villeneuve.

The Duquesne Collection provides the translation of 19 spiritual letters by Libermann to this saint written from 1842 to 1847.

Facing many trials in the establishment of her community St. Émilie sought encouragement that Fr. Libermann could provide. "As a rule God's works unfold and develop gradually, little by little. You have started the building. It does not belong to us, weak creatures, to finish it, but to Our Lord. He has placed you there as the first stone and it is possible that you may not know exactly what He has in store for you. This is God's way, usually..."

  • Fr. Libermann advises that the language of Jesus is acquired through silence. He advises against adopting too many devotions though they are holy in themselves. Silence is the preferred language of God. "If we want to speak the language of grace well, we must forget the language of our fallen nature."
  • Fr. Libermann speaks of Mother Marie's role as superior. "One all-embracing rule is that we did not come to be served but to serve. You are the first servant of your community. ... Mildness and humility should therefore be the characteristics of your rule. ... You are a domestic servant in the house of Jesus Christ, and are charged with seeing that the children carry out His will."
  • Fr. Libermann counsels patience with those who are weak and a willingness to admit to mistakes. "Do not be so unbending. ... We should humble ourselves and remain in our nothingness before God,... for the sake of serving the spiritual good of those whom we ought to love and treat more tenderly than others." He chastises himself for his harshness towards those struggling in the way of Christian holiness and warns, "When we devour sick sheep, because we are seeking our own advantage, we are truly wolves."
  • Mother Marie sought Fr. Libermann's advice in directing her sisters. He urges her to distrust her own opinion in some measure. If he were guiding one particular sister, "I would try to forget what you have told me and I should distrust everybody no matter how wise, for I feel certain that prejudices greatly influence us either for or against a person ... It is so easy and comfortable to reach to other and to urge them to do what we ourselves fail to do."
  • Fr. Libermann and Mother Marie were in regular correspondence, with the last recorded letter written to her on November 19, 1851. Libermann died the following February. Mother Marie mourned his passing in a letter to his successor, Fr. Schwindenhammer, "I have not been less sensitive to the news of the death of him whom we also regard as our father. He was so good for our congregation! It is to him that we owe our dear missions; the lights that God has given us; and the spirit he asks of us. Also, I feel, as one of you, the sacrifice that God has just asked of you."

Read the 19 Letters to Mother Marie, St. Jeanne-Emilie de Villeneuve

5. Jenny Guilllarme: Discernment of Spirits

Jenny Guilllarme who had left the convent, became a seamstress and was resolved to live a saintly life. Well known as a holy person in Paris she was associated with the recovering and restoring of the medieval relic of Christ's Holy Tunic of Argenteuil. She was member of a Saint Sulpice prayer group and sought direction from many priests. She corresponded with Fr. Louis Marie Caverot who later became bishop of Saint-Dié in 1849, and Cardinal Archbishop of Lyon in 1876.
The introduction to the letters tells us "her imprudence and indiscretion had frightened off several priests who had tried to direct her soul." Libermann's 19 letters written over two years (1843 - 1845) offered Jenny sure guidance. In his direction, he focuses on discerning the working of God's Spirit in her life. Sensitive to the interior movements of Jenny's soul - thoughts, imaginings, emotions, inclinations, desires, feelings, repulsions, and attractions - he helped her to reflect on them, understand where they came from and where they were leading her.

  • Jenny worried that she has sinned. Fr. Libermann assures her that in all that she shared with him "there was no mortal sin in anything you told me, nor was there even a serious venial fault. Your conduct, my dear child, was a little imperfect, and that is all." He encourages her, "You will not lose your soul. Jesus is your guardian and who can then steal it?" He urges vigilance. "Vigilance that is mild, holy, peaceful and loving in the presence of Jesus and Mary."
  • Jenny felt let down by others. Would Libermann similarly abandon her? He replies, "I hope, through the Mercy of our good Master, that I will not abandon you no matter what others might say or do. I am the servant of all who belong or wish to belong to Jesus, my Lord. I will not commit the injustice of abandoning or refusing to help anyone in order to seek some personal advantage, or through fear of others."
  • Jenny wonders how many crosses she is to bear and how long she is to suffer. Fr. Libermann advises her. "Do not set limits to the crosses you are willing to bear. Accept all that come as so many precious gems and be afraid to let any escape from your grasp. ... Have courage and be filled with divine love. Jesus must triumph in you. He can do so only through the Cross. He has to take you and break and crush you."
  • A Jansenist spirituality (emphasizing original sin, human depravity, and predestination) confuses Jenny. Libermann warns her: "They are truly ravenous wolves, wearing the mask and using the language of piety, but there is not even a shadow of devotion in their hearts. ... They maintain that they are the elect few and that the entire Church of Jesus Christ is lost. ... Cling with all your heart to Jesus and His Church."
  • Jenny approaches many priests for advice and gives many reasons for being attached to them. Libermann admonishes her that she is to "stop being a slave" to others and "be a spouse of Jesus instead." The Lord does not want her devotions or mortifications. "He wants your hear, your whole heart without reserve, and you will not find rest nor have a truly interior life, until you have sacrificed all your affection for creatures, all your desire to live for others and to find your joy in them."
  • Jenny is not to "assume an air of humility before others, but be humble in the depths of your soul ... always accept, with peace and love, whatever divine Providence sends you. All that God does is done well. He knows better than anyone else what you need and He will give it to you."

Read the 16 Letters to Jenny Guillarme

6. Pauline Libermann (1824-1891): from Honey to Pepper

Thirteen letters between a beloved uncle and a devoted niece comprise this correspondence between Fr. Libermann and his niece, Pauline, eldest daughter of Libermann's brother, Samson. The correspondence begins with an indulgent uncle's encouragement when Pauline was 12 years of age and extending to three months before Libermann's death in 1852 with a letter challenging Pauline to be grateful to God for the blessings she has received in living her religious vocation and never to doubt God's abiding love for her.

  • At eighteen years of age, Pauline was considering a religious vocation. Fr. Libermann stressed the importance of Pauline connecting with her desire and understanding that desire. This is true desire "When the thought of entering religion inspires us to live more perfectly, more piously, when it impels us to overcome our faults and make sacrifices for God, when it gives us peace of soul and devotion to God."
  • While figuring out if her vocation is genuine or not Pauline is to cultivate those virtues that are necessary for the fulfilment of her desire. "Prepare yourself so that, when the time comes, you may follow the voice of the Bridegroom who is calling you. In the meantime make ready for the religious life by trying to acquire the virtues that are necessary for so holy a life - recollection, humility, meekness, obedience, modesty, contempt for the world and indifference to its foolish pleasures."
  • Pauline was troubled by self-doubt. What are her true motives? Where does her real desire lie? She turned to her uncle for guidance. He replied, "Do not mistake an idea that comes uninvited into your mind for one to which your will adheres. The human motives of which you spoke are fictions of your imagination. You would never, with full deliberation, have said that it was for such motives that you desired to become a religious. The imagination at times conjures up such things but your will has no part in them. Your will sincerely seeks God."
  • Pauline took vows and, as Sister Leopold, was surprised with failings in herself. Uncle Francis again was on hand to offer firm advice. "You should not be surprised nor anxious when, from time to time, your heart plays tricks on you. The gardener is not surprised that the weeds return after he has raked and cleared the soil. He knows beforehand that some will return and that he will have to repeat the weeding over and over again."
  • In his final letter to his beloved niece, Fr. Libermann gently scolds her as one "always on the look-out for something that can cause you anxiety." He continued, "When the good Lord gives you honey, you very quickly take a pinch of pepper after it. You have scarcely finished telling me that you have drawn much benefit from your retreat when you add, I believe that the good Lord will demand a more severe account from me because of the graces He has given me. This is what I call taking a pinch of pepper directly after the honey."
  • Rather than trouble herself, she should "Be pleased and feel happy about God's infinite love for you, and do not insult His goodness and His great love for you by yielding to fears. It is not to make you fear Him that He gives you graces. Therefore, be filled with gratitude to Him for His goodness, and profit from those graces by pleasing Him more and more."

Read the 13 Letters to Pauline Libermann (Sr. Leopold)  pages 199 - 232.

7. Dr. and Mrs. Samson Libermann: Brother writing to Brother

Fr. Van de Putte, C.S.Sp. introduced this selection of 45 letters written from 1828 to 1847: "Venerable Francis Libermann practiced and preached great detachment from creatures, but he also knew how to love them in God. He thus preserved always a strong attachment to his eldest brother, Samson, and his sister-in-law."

The conversion of Samson and his wife to Catholicism in 1824 made a deep impression on Francis. Samson wrote, "He suffered intensely from it and made bitter reproaches to me for what he called my apostasy . . . . It sees, however, that my answers made an impression on him." Two years later in a letter to Samson, we see the beginnings of Francis's own journey through questioning to Christian faith. "God gave us the power to think not for the sake of letting it lie dormant but that we might exercise it. If a man had to allow his mind to grow dull, if he had to surrender blindly to the chains of religion, how then would he differ from the brute religion would make him what a brute is by force of nature. Why did I receive that heavenly gift if not that I might make use of it?"

These letters, brother to brother, give us valuable insight into how Francis understood his own trials and difficulties. They help us trace his growing trust in God's providence at work in his life. He wrote of his epilepsy. "My beloved sickness is for me a great treasure, preferable to all the goods that the world offers . . . I hope that, if our Lord Jesus Christ continues to bestow upon me the graces which He has given me until this moment, however undeserving I have been of them, I shall lead a life of perfect poverty and entirely devoted to His service. ... Whatever I am and whatever I have, belongs to God, and belongs to no one else but Him."

  • Francis, as a seminarian, took on the role of Spiritual Guide in his family, not least, in writing to Samson and his wife, whom he addressed as ‘Dear Brother and Sister'. The perfect love of God, in response to God's unending love for us, was his preoccupation. He wanted his family members to immerse themselves, as he had, in the circle of divine love. "You know what Jesus Christ asks of all Christians: You shall love the Lord your God, with your whole heart. This means that there should be no desire or affection in our heart, which is not for God alone, to the exclusion of all creatures."
  • Francis encourages the practice of meditation as a sure way to be present to God and obedient to God's will. "I should especially like to teach you how to meditate. I am very anxious for you to do so, because I am convinced that, if you applied yourself seriously to this holy exercise for even half an hour every day, you would make rapid progress in the perfection of the Christian religion."

  • Francis understood this perfection as union with Christ. This union is nurtured through meditation on the passion and suffering of Jesus for our sakes. By entering deeply into this mystery, we can behold the incomprehensible love God has for us. "If Our Lord finds our hearts well disposed, and free of the world and of worldly desires, He fills them with His love, and this love is so beautiful, so amiable, so delightful, it gives us strength to become masters of the world and of ourselves. It forms the greatest happiness of our lives here below, as well as our blessedness for the eternal hereafter."
  • Francis wants his brother and sister to be free of all resentment, regret, self-love, so that they can be worthy teachers of the Christian way for their children. They are not to speak ill of others, lest the children imitate what they do. "You must also have meekness and peace in your heart; be mild and peaceful toward everybody, even those who wish you harm. Still, you must not believe too readily that anybody is against you. On the contrary, forget all the injuries that you have received at the hands of others."

  • Francis does not want his brother and sister to be worried about him or about their own affairs. "Do not yield to anxiety or sorrow because it pleases Our Lord to make you wait so long for help in your affairs; there is a set time for everything! ... Let the Lord arrange things for you, my dear friends. Divine Providence might direct your affairs more slowly than you would wish. I am fully convinced that, if the whole family were solidly established in the perfection of divine love and renunciation of worldly things, your affairs would progress more quickly. Moreover, you see very well that God's goodness gives you reminders so that you will not distrust God."

Read the Forty-five letters from Francis to his Brother and Sister in Law.
In The Spiritual Letters of the Venerable Francis Libermann.
Volume Two: Letters to People in the World. Pages 1 - 176.

8. Marie Libermann: Don't Worry, Be Happy!

Twenty-one letters between Fr. Libermann and his niece and goddaughter, Marie, began in December 1838 when she was nine years of age and continued up to November 1851. Marie considered a religious vocation but never joined a convent. Rather, she lived an intentionally Christian life "in the world."  This was difficult for her, in her adolescence and early adult years as her vivid imagination distracted her from this focus. Fr. Libermann counselled Marie in different letters to deal with this by (1) having a strong desire to belong to God; (2) surrendering herself to God; (3) living joyfully without being overconcerned about herself - "laugh when you feel like laughing"; (4)  trusting in the Lord - "who is hidden among us on earth for the sole purpose of filling us with himself"; (5) patience - "abandon yourself completely into God's hands."  Marie died (from typhoid fever) seven years after her uncle  in Paris in 1859.

  • Fr. Libermann's spirituality begins by experiencing God's love and responding to that love with great trust and abandonment to God's will. In the early letters to Marie his focus is on her relationship with Mary, the Mother of the Lord, who "loves you so much that she has wanted to bear her name, so that everyone will know to whom you belong." Marie has three mothers - her mother, godmother (with whom she lives) and Mary, the Lord's mother, who is so great and so lovable. She "will take care of you, as she has taken care of her dear Child Jesus, for you also are her dear child!"

  • Marie is to bring all that is troubling her to this sweetest of mothers. "Tell her all your troubles in all simplicity, show her the wounds of your heart, with tears reveal to her that you are suffering, and ask her to cure you. When a small child falls and hurts herself, she runs to her mother crying she shows her the place where it hurts; she does not even have to ask her mother to cure her; she knows beforehand that her good mother will do all she can to console her. If she is covered with mud, mother washes and cleans her. Act in the same way with Mary and she will give you great help and consolation."

  • Marie, at the age of thirteen, was making her first Holy Communion and had a lot of anxiety and fearful of offending God and doing wrong. As she was advised to trust in Mary as an understanding and loving mother, so now, her godfather advises her to "Go to Jesus with confidence; you love Him and He loves you. What risks are you taking and what have you to fear? Don't entertain such unreasonable thoughts that inspire fear. Do you want to fear Him who loves you to excess, even with a sort of folly? Yes, with the folly of the Cross! He died for you. He desires so ardently to unite your soul to Himself that He wants to become the food of your poor soul."
  • Marie, at the age of fifteen has set her sights on being a saint. But she is troubled by her faults and weakness. The joy and peace of the saints eludes her. Her godfather encourages her: "You have a right to such joy and peace, for you are a child of God, beloved by Jesus and Mary; it is not proper for you to be sad and to grieve. If you find that you are poor in virtues in comparison with the saints, do your best to reach their level. Your aims must be as high as that; and you will be successful, my dear child, if you are faithful. A newborn baby does not grow immediately to adulthood. A soul that enters the road of holiness, likewise, does not reach the highest level at once. First, be a child of God, then become an adolescent, and finally reach maturity. Be faithful and Jesus will grant you this grace."

  • Marie, aged eighteen, was troubled by many temptations. She turned to her godfather for insight and advice. He replied, "You must not be surprised if your heart has emotions that are opposed to the virtue which you want to possess. The senses and the imagination are easily taken by surprise by the things that surround them ... Trouble and unruly activity take place in the imagination." Fr. Libermann proposed four rules to help:
• Avoid giving in to anxiety and do not plague your mind at the approach of temptation
• Seek to distract your mind, avoid sadness, discouragement
• Do not entertain excessive fears of being attacked by temptation
• Have a profound, filial and constant confidence in Jesus.
Marie had an active imagination that led her in many directions. Fr. Libermann's remedy, "Don't worry about all those thoughts that flit through your mind. God knows your heart. Give it entirely to Him and don't worry if your imagination wants to remain on earth. ... Be content with raising your heart to God and making some acts of love, humility, sacrifice, and submission in all things to His good pleasure. But make these acts rather with the heart than with the mind, and don't worry about the rest."

Read the Twenty-one letters from Godfather to Goddaughter
In The Spiritual Letters of the Venerable Francis Libermann.
Volume Two: Letters to People in the World. Pages 180 - 246.

9. Madame Victor Rémond: The Unrecognized Director

Madame Rémond, a wife, mother and teacher from Lyons wrote to the seminarian Francis Libermann on the recommendation of her brother, Father de Goy who had Libermann as his spiritual director when he was at Issy. He introduced his sister to Libermann who responded, "Let the lady write to me, and if I see that it is the spirit of the Lord who is guiding her, I will reply."
Six letters, all written in 1838 - when Libermann was in Rennes - survive from that correspondence. In the final letter, Libermann agreed with Madame Rémond that it would be a great pleasure to meet with her in person. "it is truly my hope that even in this world God will give me this grace and I thank Him for it."  The following year Libermann journeyed from Rennes to Rome on foot. Stopping in Lyons he arrived at Madame Rémond's door dressed as a poor cleric. The maid failed to give his name. Taking him as a poor cleric seeking alms she simply pressed some money in his hand and bade him a kind adieu. The directee met her director, but did not know it.

  • 1st Letter, Interior Disposition: "Pray to the Holy Spirit to enlighten you and tell me very simply the things as you see them, and then worry no more about them and think no more of them. It is to be hoped that the Lord will make known your interior disposition to me, as he usually does when it pleases Him to give me this grace."

  • 2nd Letter, Sweet Confidence: "Preserve a sweet confidence in your soul, for you are the well-beloved daughter of the Lord. Your life should be hidden in Him, so that you may live His life. He desires to live in you as He lived in Mary. You are an empty vessel which the Lord desires to fill, and if it pleases Divine Goodness, you will later better understand the comparison."

  • 3rd Letter, How to Meditate: "Begin by recollecting yourself and by placing yourself in a certain repose and peace before the Divine Majesty. Next, a profound sentiment of your lowliness in God's presence... Then raise your soul, gently turning away your thoughts from yourself. Consider the Divine Word in His immensity, which fills the whole universe and all time with His greatness and His infinite perfection. ... Consider Jesus acting in you with incomparable gentleness and peace, and desiring with a great love to establish His dwelling therein, and to make you live His own life."
  • 4th Letter, How to Make Confession: "When you want to go to confession, open your soul before your Savior, in order that He may look at your wounds and heal them. This opening of the interior of your soul must be done with all confidence, humility, confusion and peace. Consider your little child when he has hurt himself; he shows you his little hand, knowing that you will apply a remedy and console him."

  • 5th Letter, Receiving Holy Communion: "Prepare yourself for it with a great spirit of love and childlike confidence, aiming always at pacifying and calming yourself in order that the divine Savior may come and unite Himself to you in a more living and intimate manner than usual. When you have received, do not act too much yourself, but allow Him to act in you; remain in silence before Him, allowing Him to animate and vivify you with His own life and His love, with which He comes to unite you to Himself, so that you are, as it were, lost in Him."
  • 6th Letter, Living Well: "Continue to make your meditation on the incarnation, and during the day remain in sweet and peaceful union with your well-beloved Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Your exterior conduct should show the influence of this interior view and attitude, engendering great modesty; genuine modesty can spring from no other source. Speak and act with genuine moderation. ... Try to be mild and charitable in all your judgments."

Read the six letters to Madame Rémond
In The Spiritual Letters of the Venerable Francis Libermann.
Volume Two: Letters to People in the World. Pages 273 - 285..