BTP- L14 – Letter 335 – The Letters of St. Elizabeth of the Trinity – Beginning to Pray w/Dr. Anthony Lilles podcast

Dr. Lilles continues the spiritual explorations of the Letters of St. Elizabeth of the Trinity. In this episode we discuss letter 335.  In this special letter, shortly before her death, Elizabeth sends this letter to a friend Sister Marie-Odile.  This is a very poignant letter and conversation.

L 335
To Sister Marie-Odile

[October 28, 1906]
Our God is a consuming Fire

Before flying away to Heaven, dear little Sister Marie-Odile, I want to send you a little note from my soul, for I am anxious for you to know that in the Father’s House I will pray especially for you. I am keeping a rendez-vous with you in the Furnace of love; my eternity will be spent there, and you can begin it already here on earth. Dear Sister, I will be jealous for the beauty of your soul, for, as you know, my little heart loves you very much, and when one loves, one desires the best for the beloved. I think that in Heaven my mission will be to draw souls by helping them go out of themselves to cling to God by a wholly simple and loving movement, and to keep them in this great silence within that will allow God to communicate Himself to them and transform them into Himself. Dear little sister of my soul, it seems to me I now see everything in God’s light, and if I started my life over again, oh, I would wish not to waste one instant! He does not allow us, His brides in Carmel, to devote ourselves to anything but love, but the divine, and if by chance, in the radiance of His Light, I see you leave that sole occupation, I will come very quickly to call you to order; you would want that, wouldn’t you?

Pray for me, help me prepare for the wedding feast of the Lamb. Death entails a great deal of suffering, and I am counting on you to help me. In return, I will come to help you at your death. My Master urges me on, He speaks to me of nothing but the eternity of love. It is so grave, so serious; I wish to live each moment fully. A Dieu, I don’t have the strength or the permission to write at length, but you know Saint Paul’s words: “Our conversation is in Heaven.” Beloved little sister, let us live by love so we may die of love and glorify the God Who is all Love.

“Laudem gloriae,”
October 28, 1906.

Catez, Elizabeth of the Trinity. The Complete Works of Elizabeth of the Trinity volume 2: Letters from Carmel (pp. 360-361). ICS Publications. Kindle Edition.

Special thanks to Miriam Gutierrez for her readings of St. Elizabeth’s letters

For other episodes in the series visit
The Discerning Hearts “The Letters of St. Elizabeth of the Trinity” with Dr. Anthony Lilles’

Anthony Lilles, S.T.D. is an associate professor and the academic dean of Saint John’s Seminary in Camarillo as well as the academic advisor for Juan Diego House of Priestly Formation for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. For over twenty years he served the Church in Northern Colorado where he joined and eventually served as dean of the founding faculty of Saint John Vianney Theological Seminary in Denver. Through the years, clergy, seminarians, religious and lay faithful have benefited from his lectures and retreat conferences on the Carmelite Doctors of the Church and the writings of St. Elisabeth of the Trinity.
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BTP- L13 – Letter 269 – The Letters of St. Elizabeth of the Trinity – Beginning to Pray w/Dr. Anthony Lilles podcast

Dr. Lilles continues the spiritual explorations of the Letters of St. Elizabeth of the Trinity. In this episode we discuss letter 269.  In this special letter, only months before her death, Elizabeth sends this letter to her sister Marguerite:

L 269
To her sister
[a toward the end of April 1906]

“Having loved those who were His own in the world,
He loved them to the end.”

Darling little sister,

I don’t know if the hour has come to pass from this world to my Father, for I am much better and the little saint of Beaune seems to want to cure me. But, you see, at times it seems to me that the Divine Eagle wants to swoop down on His little prey and carry her off to where He is: into dazzling light! You have always put your Sabeth’s happiness before your own, and I am sure that if I fly away, you will rejoice over my first meeting with Divine Beauty. When the veil is lifted, how happy I will be to disappear into the secret of His Face, and that is where I will spend my eternity, in the bosom of the Trinity that was already my dwelling place here below. Just think, my Guite! to contemplate in His light the splendors of the Divine Being, to search into all the depths of His mystery, to become one with Him whom we love, to sing unceasingly of His glory and His love, to be like Him because we see Him as He is! . . .

Little sister, I would be happy to go up above to be your Angel. How jealous I would be for the beauty of your soul that I have loved so much already here on earth! I leave you my devotion for the Three, to “Love.” Live within with Them in the heaven of your soul; the Father will overshadow you, placing something like a cloud between you and the things of this earth to keep you all His, He will communicate His power to you so you can love Him with a love as strong as death; the Word will imprint in your soul, as in a crystal, the image of His own beauty, so you may be pure with His purity, luminous with His light; the Holy Spirit will transform you into a mysterious lyre, which, in silence, beneath His divine touch, will produce a magnificent canticle to Love; then you will be “the praise of His glory” I dreamed of being on earth. You will take my place; I will be “Laudem Gloriae” before the throne of the Lamb, and you, “Laudem Gloriae” in the center of your soul; we will always be united, little sister. Always believe in Love. If you have to suffer, think that you are even more loved, and always sing in thanksgiving. He is so jealous for the beauty of your soul. . . . That is all He has in view. Teach the little ones to live in the sight of the Master. I would love for Sabeth to have my devotion to the Three. I will be at their first Communions, I will help you prepare them. Pray for me; I have offended my Master more than you think; but above all thank Him; say a Gloria every day. Forgive me for having often given you a bad example.

A Dieu, little sister, how I love you. . . . Perhaps I will go soon to be lost in the Furnace of love; whether in Heaven or on earth, we must live in Love to glorify Love!

Catez, Elizabeth of the Trinity. The Complete Works of Elizabeth of the Trinity volume 2: Letters from Carmel (pp. 264-265). ICS Publications. Kindle Edition.

Special thanks to Miriam Gutierrez for her readings of St. Elizabeth’s letters

For other episodes in the series visit
The Discerning Hearts “The Letters of St. Elizabeth of the Trinity” with Dr. Anthony Lilles’

Anthony Lilles, S.T.D. is an associate professor and the academic dean of Saint John’s Seminary in Camarillo as well as the academic advisor for Juan Diego House of Priestly Formation for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. For over twenty years he served the Church in Northern Colorado where he joined and eventually served as dean of the founding faculty of Saint John Vianney Theological Seminary in Denver. Through the years, clergy, seminarians, religious and lay faithful have benefited from his lectures and retreat conferences on the Carmelite Doctors of the Church and the writings of St. Elisabeth of the Trinity.
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BTP- L12 – Letter 224- The Letters of St. Elizabeth of the Trinity – Beginning to Pray w/Dr. Anthony Lilles podcast

Dr. Lilles continues the spiritual explorations of the Letters of St. Elizabeth of the Trinity. In this episode we discuss letter 224, with a special focus on Elizabeth’s insights on  fear, death, hope and renunciation:

L 224
To Madame Angels
[a little before March 8, 1905]

J. M. + J. T.

“Abandonment is the delicious fruit of love”

Very dear Madame,

Before entering the great silence of Lent, our Reverend Mother is allowing me to tell you how much my dear community and I are praying for you. I can understand what apprehensions you must feel in facing an operation; I am asking God to ease them, to calm them Himself. The holy Apostle Paul says that “He works all things according to the counsel of His will,” thus we must receive everything as coming directly from that divine hand of our Father who loves us and who, through all trials, pursues His goal, “to unite us more closely to Himself.” Dear Madame, launch your soul on the waves of confidence and abandonment, and remember that anything that troubles it or throws it into fear does not come from God, for He is the Prince of Peace and He promises that peace “to those of good will.” When you are afraid you have abused His graces, as you say, that is the time to redouble your confidence, for, as the Apostle says, “where sin abounds, grace abounds all the more,” and farther on, “I boast of my weaknesses, for then the power of Jesus Christ dwells in me.” “Our God is rich in mercy because of His immense love.” So do not fear the hour we must all pass through. Death, dear Madame, is the sleep of the child resting on the heart of its mother. At last the night of exile will have fled forever, and we will enter into possession of the inheritance of the saints in light. Saint John of the Cross says we will be judged in love. That corresponds well with the thinking of Our Lord, who said to Mary Magdalene: “Many sins have been forgiven her because she has loved much.” I often think I will have a very long purgatory, for much will be asked of the one who has received much and He has been so overwhelmingly generous to His little bride, but she abandons herself to His love and sings the hymn of His mercies while still on earth! Dear Madame, if we made God increase in our soul every day, think what confidence that would give us to appear one day before His infinite holiness! I think you have found the secret and that it is indeed that we arrive at this divine goal through renunciation: by that means we die to self in order to leave all the room to God. Do you remember that beautiful passage from the Gospel according to Saint John where Our Lord says to Nicodemus: “Truly I say to you, if one is not born anew, one cannot see the kingdom of God”? Let us therefore renew ourselves in the interior of our soul, “let us strip off the old and clothe ourselves anew, in the image of Him who created him” (Saint Paul). That is done gently and simply, by separating ourselves from all that is not God. Then the soul no longer has any fears or desires, its will is entirely lost in the will of God, and since this is what creates union, it can cry out: “I live no longer I, but Christ lives in me.” Let us pray much for each other during this holy time of Lent; let us retire to the desert with our Master and ask Him to teach us to live by His life.

I saw Mama, Marguerite, and her dear little Sabeth; it was the last parlor visit until Easter, they find that very long. I know Marie-Louise is also expecting a little angel and I recommend her particularly to God. Remember me to your dear ones. I am writing a little note in reply to Monsieur le Chanoine2 and, as a poor Carmelite, I am being so bold as to entrust it to you to deliver to him whenever you have a chance; I hope that is not being indiscreet. A Dieu, dear Madame, courage and confidence, I kiss you as I love you.

Catez, Elizabeth of the Trinity. The Complete Works of Elizabeth of the Trinity volume 2: Letters from Carmel (pp. 192-194). ICS Publications. Kindle Edition.

Special thanks to Miriam Gutierrez for her readings of St. Elizabeth’s letters

For other episodes in the series visit
The Discerning Hearts “The Letters of St. Elizabeth of the Trinity” with Dr. Anthony Lilles’

Anthony Lilles, S.T.D. is an associate professor and the academic dean of Saint John’s Seminary in Camarillo as well as the academic advisor for Juan Diego House of Priestly Formation for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. For over twenty years he served the Church in Northern Colorado where he joined and eventually served as dean of the founding faculty of Saint John Vianney Theological Seminary in Denver. Through the years, clergy, seminarians, religious and lay faithful have benefited from his lectures and retreat conferences on the Carmelite Doctors of the Church and the writings of St. Elisabeth of the Trinity.
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BTP- L11 – Letter 214 pt. 2 – The Letters of St. Elizabeth of the Trinity – Beginning to Pray w/Dr. Anthony Lilles podcast

Dr. Lilles continues the spiritual explorations of the Letters of St. Elizabeth of the Trinity. This episode is part 2 of our conversation on letter 214, with a special focus on suffering and humility united to Christ in our prayer:

L 214
To Abbé Chevignard
[November 29, 1904]

J. M. + J. T.

“Providebam Dominum in conspectu meo semper; quoniam a dextris est mihi, ne commovear.”

Monsieur l’Abbé,

I am very grateful to you for your feastday wishes, and I am very happy the Church has placed our saints so close to each other, because that gives me the chance to offer you my best wishes today. Saint Augustine says that “love, forgetful of its own dignity, is eager to raise and magnify the beloved: it has only one measure, which is to be without measure.”  I am asking God to fill you with that measure without measure, which is to say, according to the “riches of His glory,”  that the weight of His love may draw you to the point of happy loss the Apostle spoke of when he wrote “Vivo enim jam non ego, vivit vero in me Christus.”  That is the dream of my Carmelite soul and, I believe, also the dream of your priestly soul. Above all it is the dream of Christ, and I ask Him to accomplish it fully in our souls. Let us be for Him, in a way, another humanity in which He may renew His whole Mystery.  I have asked Him to make His home in me as Adorer, as Healer, and as Savior, and I cannot tell you what peace it gives my soul to think that He makes up for my weaknesses and, if I fall at every passing moment, He is there to help me up again  and carry me farther into Himself, into the depths of that divine essence where we already live by grace and where I would like to bury myself so deeply that nothing could make me leave. My soul meets yours there and, in unison with yours, I keep silent to adore Him who has loved us so divinely.

I unite myself to you in the emotions and profound joys of your soul as you await ordination and beg you to let me share in this grace with you: each morning I am reciting the Hour of Terce for you so the Spirit of love and light may “come upon” you to bring about all His creative work in you. If you would like, when you recite the Divine Office we could unite in the same prayer during this Hour that I have a particular devotion to. We will breathe in love11a and draw it down on our souls and on the whole Church.

You tell me to pray that you may be granted humility and the spirit of sacrifice. In the evening, while making the Way of the Cross before Matins, at every outpouring of the Precious Blood I used to ask for this grace for my own soul; from now on it will also be for yours. Don’t you believe that, to achieve the annihilation, contempt of self, and love of suffering that were deep in the souls of the saints, we must gaze for a very long time at the God crucified by love, to receive an outflowing of His power through continual contact with Him? Père Vallée once said to us that “martyrdom was the response of any lofty soul to the Crucified.” It seems to me that this could also be said for immolation. So let us be sacrificial souls, which is to say, true in our love: “He loved me, He gave Himself up for me!” A Dieu, Monsieur l’Abbé. Let us live by love, by adoration, by self-forgetfulness, in wholly joyful and confident peace, for “we are Christ’s, and Christ is God’s”! . . .

Sister M. Elizabeth of the Trinity r.c.i.

On the 8th, we are going to give our Immaculate Mother and Queen a beautiful feast day in our souls; I will meet you under her virginal mantle.

Catez, Elizabeth of the Trinity. The Complete Works of Elizabeth of the Trinity volume 2: Letters from Carmel (pp. 179-180). ICS Publications. Kindle Edition.

 

Special thanks to Miriam Gutierrez for her readings of St. Elizabeth’s letters

For other episodes in the series visit
The Discerning Hearts “The Letters of St. Elizabeth of the Trinity” with Dr. Anthony Lilles’

Anthony Lilles, S.T.D. is an associate professor and the academic dean of Saint John’s Seminary in Camarillo as well as the academic advisor for Juan Diego House of Priestly Formation for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. For over twenty years he served the Church in Northern Colorado where he joined and eventually served as dean of the founding faculty of Saint John Vianney Theological Seminary in Denver. Through the years, clergy, seminarians, religious and lay faithful have benefited from his lectures and retreat conferences on the Carmelite Doctors of the Church and the writings of St. Elisabeth of the Trinity.
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BTP- L10 – Letter 214 pt. 1 – The Letters of St. Elizabeth of the Trinity – Beginning to Pray w/Dr. Anthony Lilles podcast

Dr. Lilles continues the spiritual explorations of the Letters of St. Elizabeth of the Trinity. In this episode, we continue our conversation on letter 214, with a special focus on Heaven as a spiritual reality:

L 214
To Abbé Chevignard
[November 29, 1904]

J. M. + J. T.

“Providebam Dominum in conspectu meo semper; quoniam a dextris est mihi, ne commovear.”

Monsieur l’Abbé,

I am very grateful to you for your feastday wishes, and I am very happy the Church has placed our saints so close to each other, because that gives me the chance to offer you my best wishes today. Saint Augustine says that “love, forgetful of its own dignity, is eager to raise and magnify the beloved: it has only one measure, which is to be without measure.”  I am asking God to fill you with that measure without measure, which is to say, according to the “riches of His glory,”  that the weight of His love may draw you to the point of happy loss the Apostle spoke of when he wrote “Vivo enim jam non ego, vivit vero in me Christus.”  That is the dream of my Carmelite soul and, I believe, also the dream of your priestly soul. Above all it is the dream of Christ, and I ask Him to accomplish it fully in our souls. Let us be for Him, in a way, another humanity in which He may renew His whole Mystery.  I have asked Him to make His home in me as Adorer, as Healer, and as Savior, and I cannot tell you what peace it gives my soul to think that He makes up for my weaknesses and, if I fall at every passing moment, He is there to help me up again  and carry me farther into Himself, into the depths of that divine essence where we already live by grace and where I would like to bury myself so deeply that nothing could make me leave. My soul meets yours there and, in unison with yours, I keep silent to adore Him who has loved us so divinely.

I unite myself to you in the emotions and profound joys of your soul as you await ordination and beg you to let me share in this grace with you: each morning I am reciting the Hour of Terce for you so the Spirit of love and light may “come upon” you to bring about all His creative work in you. If you would like, when you recite the Divine Office we could unite in the same prayer during this Hour that I have a particular devotion to. We will breathe in love11a and draw it down on our souls and on the whole Church.

You tell me to pray that you may be granted humility and the spirit of sacrifice. In the evening, while making the Way of the Cross before Matins, at every outpouring of the Precious Blood I used to ask for this grace for my own soul; from now on it will also be for yours. Don’t you believe that, to achieve the annihilation, contempt of self, and love of suffering that were deep in the souls of the saints, we must gaze for a very long time at the God crucified by love, to receive an outflowing of His power through continual contact with Him? Père Vallée once said to us that “martyrdom was the response of any lofty soul to the Crucified.” It seems to me that this could also be said for immolation. So let us be sacrificial souls, which is to say, true in our love: “He loved me, He gave Himself up for me!” A Dieu, Monsieur l’Abbé. Let us live by love, by adoration, by self-forgetfulness, in wholly joyful and confident peace, for “we are Christ’s, and Christ is God’s”! . . .

Sister M. Elizabeth of the Trinity r.c.i.

On the 8th, we are going to give our Immaculate Mother and Queen a beautiful feast day in our souls; I will meet you under her virginal mantle.

Catez, Elizabeth of the Trinity. The Complete Works of Elizabeth of the Trinity volume 2: Letters from Carmel (pp. 179-180). ICS Publications. Kindle Edition.

 

Special thanks to Miriam Gutierrez for her readings of St. Elizabeth’s letters

For other episodes in the series visit
The Discerning Hearts “The Letters of St. Elizabeth of the Trinity” with Dr. Anthony Lilles’

Anthony Lilles, S.T.D. is an associate professor and the academic dean of Saint John’s Seminary in Camarillo as well as the academic advisor for Juan Diego House of Priestly Formation for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. For over twenty years he served the Church in Northern Colorado where he joined and eventually served as dean of the founding faculty of Saint John Vianney Theological Seminary in Denver. Through the years, clergy, seminarians, religious and lay faithful have benefited from his lectures and retreat conferences on the Carmelite Doctors of the Church and the writings of St. Elisabeth of the Trinity.
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BTP- L9 – Letter 185 – The Letters of St. Elizabeth of the Trinity – Beginning to Pray w/Dr. Anthony Lilles podcast

Dr. Lilles continues the spiritual explorations of the Letters of St. Elizabeth of the Trinity. In this episode, our conversation reflects on letter 185:

185
[November 28, 1903]
Dijon Carmel,
November 28

J. M. + J. T.

“Ipsi sum desponsata cui Angeli serviunt.” Monsieur l’Abbé, Thank you for your good prayers, thank you for your letter. What you tell me about my name does me much good; I love it so much, it expresses my entire vocation; when I think of it my soul is carried away in the great vision of the Mystery of mysteries, in the Trinity that even here below is our cloister, our dwelling, the Infinite within which we can pass through everything. At the moment I am reading some very beautiful pages in our blessed Father Saint John of the Cross on the transformation of the soul in the three Divine Persons. Monsieur l’Abbé, to what an abyss of glory we are called! Oh! I understand the silence, the recollection of the saints who could no longer leave their contemplation; thus God could lead them to the divine summits where union is made perfect between Him and the soul who has become His bride, in the mystical sense of the word. Our blessed Father says that then the Holy Spirit raises it to so wonderful a height that He makes it capable of producing in God the same spiration of love that the Father produces in the Son and the Son in the Father, the spiration that is the Holy Spirit Himself ! To think that God calls us by our vocation to live in this holy light! What an adorable mystery of charity! I would like to respond to it by living on earth as the Blessed Virgin did, “keeping all these things in my heart,”6 burying myself, so to speak, in the depths of my soul to lose myself in the Trinity who dwells in it in order to transform me into itself. Then my motto, “my luminous ideal,” as you said, will be accomplished: it will really be Elizabeth of the Trinity! . . .

I am very grateful to you for having sent me your instruction; it can apply to a Carmelite as well as to a priest, and I loved reading it on the 21st, the day we had the beautiful ceremony of the renewal of our holy vows. You see how perfectly it suited the occasion!

Monday I will say the Office of Saint Andrew for you, and I will offer Holy Communion for that same intention. May you be submerged, invaded by the great river of Life, may you feel the springs of living water well up from the deepest part of your soul, so that God may be your All. I have entrusted this desire you formed in my soul into the hands of her who was so completely God’s “thing,” and she will speak to you in the silence of your soul. With you, I remain wholly adoring the Mystery.

Sr. M. Eliz. of the Trinity r.c.i.

The death of Monsieur Chapuis12 grieved me deeply: to think God has loved so much and that some souls close themselves off to the action of this love. . . .

Catez, Elizabeth of the Trinity. The Complete Works of Elizabeth of the Trinity volume 2: Letters from Carmel (pp. 135-137). ICS Publications. Kindle Edition.

 

Special thanks to Miriam Gutierrez for her readings of St. Elizabeth’s letters

For other episodes in the series visit
The Discerning Hearts “The Letters of St. Elizabeth of the Trinity” with Dr. Anthony Lilles’

Anthony Lilles, S.T.D. is an associate professor and the academic dean of Saint John’s Seminary in Camarillo as well as the academic advisor for Juan Diego House of Priestly Formation for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. For over twenty years he served the Church in Northern Colorado where he joined and eventually served as dean of the founding faculty of Saint John Vianney Theological Seminary in Denver. Through the years, clergy, seminarians, religious and lay faithful have benefited from his lectures and retreat conferences on the Carmelite Doctors of the Church and the writings of St. Elisabeth of the Trinity.
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BTP- L8 – Letter 184 – The Letters of St. Elizabeth of the Trinity – Beginning to Pray w/Dr. Anthony Lilles podcast

Dr. Lilles continues the spiritual explorations of the Letters of St. Elizabeth of the Trinity. In this episode, our conversation reflects on letter 184, with a special focus on Heaven, the Saints, and spiritual friendship as a spiritual reality.:

L184
[November 24, 1903]

Dijon Carmel,
November 24

J. M. +J. T.

“My Beloved is all mine and I am all His!”2 Madame and dear sister, I was very touched by your good wishes. I, for my part, celebrated your feast day, too, since Saint Elizabeth is your patron,3 for it does us much good to look into the soul of saints and then to follow them through faith right up to Heaven; there, they are all luminous with the light of God, whom they contemplate face to face for all eternity! . . . This Heaven of the saints is our homeland, the “Father’s House”4 where we are awaited, where we are loved, where one day we too will be able to fly and rest in the bosom of Infinite Love!

When we consider the divine world that envelops us already here in our exile and in which we can move, oh, then things here below disappear: all of that doesn’t exist, it is less than nothing. The saints, for their part, understood true knowledge so well, the knowledge that makes us leave everything, and especially ourselves, so we can fly to God and live solely with Him! Dear Madame, He is within us to sanctify us, so let us ask Him to be Himself our sanctity.5 When Our Lord was on earth, the Gospel says “a secret power went out from Him,”6 at His touch the sick recovered their health, the dead were restored to life. Well, He is still living! living in the tabernacle in His adorable Sacrament, living in our souls. He Himself said: “If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word, and My Father will love him and We will come to him and make Our home in him,”7 so since He is there, let us keep Him company as a friend does with the One he loves! The essence of our life in Carmel is this divine, wholly intimate union; it is what makes our solitude so precious, for, as our holy father John of the Cross, whose feast we are celebrating today, said, “Two hearts who love each other prefer solitude to anything else.”8 On Saturday,9 the feast of the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin, we had the beautiful ceremony of the renewal of our vows. Oh! dear Madame, what a beautiful day, what joy to be bound to the service of so good a Master, to tell Him that one is His until death, “sponsa Christi.” I am so happy to feel that you too are given to Him, and it seems to me that, from up in Heaven, our great Saint Elizabeth must bless and seal the union of our souls. Please tell your little Sister Imelda of Jesus10 that I very happily grant her wish by remembering her each day before God; I ask her to pray for me too, especially to say “thank you” to Him who has chosen the better part for me! I was very happy to have news of you through Mama, who was so well received, so spoiled when she was with you,11 I don’t know how to express my gratitude to all of you for that. As for me, I will never go to your beautiful mountains again, but I will follow you there in soul and heart, asking Him who is our “rendez-vous” to draw us to those other mountains, those divine summits that are so far from earth they nearly touch Heaven; I remain wholly united with you there beneath the rays of the Sun of Love! . . . 12 Sister M. Eliz. of the Trinity r.c.i.

Catez, Elizabeth of the Trinity. The Complete Works of Elizabeth of the Trinity volume 2: Letters from Carmel (pp. 134-135). ICS Publications. Kindle Edition.

 

Special thanks to Miriam Gutierrez for her readings of St. Elizabeth’s letters

For other episodes in the series visit
The Discerning Hearts “The Letters of St. Elizabeth of the Trinity” with Dr. Anthony Lilles’

Anthony Lilles, S.T.D. is an associate professor and the academic dean of Saint John’s Seminary in Camarillo as well as the academic advisor for Juan Diego House of Priestly Formation for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. For over twenty years he served the Church in Northern Colorado where he joined and eventually served as dean of the founding faculty of Saint John Vianney Theological Seminary in Denver. Through the years, clergy, seminarians, religious and lay faithful have benefited from his lectures and retreat conferences on the Carmelite Doctors of the Church and the writings of St. Elisabeth of the Trinity.
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BTP- L7 – Letter 169 pt. 2 – The Letters of St. Elizabeth of the Trinity – Beginning to Pray w/Dr. Anthony Lilles podcast

Dr. Lilles continues the spiritual explorations of the Letters of St. Elizabeth of the Trinity. In this episode, we continue our conversation on letter 169, with a special focus on Heaven as a spiritual reality:

L 169
To Canon Angles
[ July 15, 1903]
Dijon Carmel,

J. M. + J. T.

Monsieur le Chanoine,

My dear Mama, whom I saw last week, brought me your good letter, and I assure you that I can indeed sympathize with the suffering your eyes are causing you, and I am praying fervently for you. I was wondering a little what had become of you, but you find your little Carmelite close to God, don’t you? And that is where she finds you too; then no more distance, no more separation, but already, as in Heaven, the fusion of hearts and souls! . . . How many things have happened since my last letter! I heard the Church say “Veni sponsa Christi” [Come, bride of Christ]; she consecrated me, and now all is “consummated.” Rather, everything is beginning, for profession is only a dawn; and each day my “life as a bride”3 seems to me more beautiful, more luminous, more enveloped in peace and love. During the night that preceded the great day, while I was in choir awaiting the Bridegroom, I understood that my Heaven was beginning on earth; Heaven in faith, with suffering and immolation for Him whom I love! . . . I so wish to love Him, to love Him as my seraphic Mother did, even to dying of it. We sing “O charitatis Victima” on her feast day, and that is my whole ambition: to be the prey of love! I think that in Carmel it is so simple to live by love; from morning to evening the Rule is there to express the will of God, moment by moment. If you knew how I love this Rule, which is the way He wants me to become holy. I do not know if I will have the happiness of giving my Bridegroom the witness of my blood [by martyrdom], but at least, if I fully live my Carmelite life, I have the consolation of wearing myself out for Him, for Him alone. Then what difference does the work He wills for me make? Since He is always with me, prayer, the heart-to-heart, must never end! I feel Him so alive in my soul. I have only to recollect myself to find Him within me, and that is my whole happiness. He has placed in my heart a thirst for the infinite and such a great need for love that He alone can satisfy it. I go to Him like a little child to its mother so He may fill, invade, everything, and then take me and carry me away in His arms. I think we must be so simple with God!

I am longing to send you my good Mama; you will see how God is working in this beloved soul. Sometimes I cry for happiness and gratitude; it is so good to be devoted to your mother, to feel that she, too, is completely His, to be able to tell her about your soul and to be completely understood! . . . You really are the great attraction of the trip, I assure you; I love to remember those vacations at Saint-Hilaire, then at Carcassonne and Labastide, they were the best ones I had. With what fatherly goodness you received the confidences I so loved to make to you; I would be happy if one day they could be made once again through my dear grilles. Won’t you come to bless your little Carmelite and, quite close to her, thank Him who “has loved her exceedingly,” for, you see, my happiness can no longer be expressed. Listen to what is being sung in my soul and all that is rising from the heart of the bride to the Heart of the Bridegroom for you whose little child she will always be. Send her your best blessing; at Holy Mass, bathe her in the Blood of the Bridegroom; it is the purity of the bride, and she is so thirsting for it! A Dieu, monsieur le Chanoine, affectionately and respectfully yours,

Sr. Elizabeth of the Trinity r.c.i.

Catez, Elizabeth of the Trinity. The Complete Works of Elizabeth of the Trinity volume 2: Letters from Carmel (pp. 110-111). ICS Publications. Kindle Edition.

 

Special thanks to Miriam Gutierrez for her readings of St. Elizabeth’s letters

For other episodes in the series visit
The Discerning Hearts “The Letters of St. Elizabeth of the Trinity” with Dr. Anthony Lilles’

Anthony Lilles, S.T.D. is an associate professor and the academic dean of Saint John’s Seminary in Camarillo as well as the academic advisor for Juan Diego House of Priestly Formation for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. For over twenty years he served the Church in Northern Colorado where he joined and eventually served as dean of the founding faculty of Saint John Vianney Theological Seminary in Denver. Through the years, clergy, seminarians, religious and lay faithful have benefited from his lectures and retreat conferences on the Carmelite Doctors of the Church and the writings of St. Elisabeth of the Trinity.
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BTP- L6 – Letter 169 pt. 1 – The Letters of St. Elizabeth of the Trinity – Beginning to Pray w/Dr. Anthony Lilles podcast

Dr. Lilles continues the spiritual explorations of the Letters of St. Elizabeth of the Trinity. In this episode, we discuss letter 169, with a special focus on Heaven as a spiritual reality.:

L 169
To Canon Angles
[ July 15, 1903]
Dijon Carmel,

J. M. + J. T.

Monsieur le Chanoine,

My dear Mama, whom I saw last week, brought me your good letter, and I assure you that I can indeed sympathize with the suffering your eyes are causing you, and I am praying fervently for you. I was wondering a little what had become of you, but you find your little Carmelite close to God, don’t you? And that is where she finds you too; then no more distance, no more separation, but already, as in Heaven, the fusion of hearts and souls! . . . How many things have happened since my last letter! I heard the Church say “Veni sponsa Christi” [Come, bride of Christ]; she consecrated me, and now all is “consummated.” Rather, everything is beginning, for profession is only a dawn; and each day my “life as a bride”3 seems to me more beautiful, more luminous, more enveloped in peace and love. During the night that preceded the great day, while I was in choir awaiting the Bridegroom, I understood that my Heaven was beginning on earth; Heaven in faith, with suffering and immolation for Him whom I love! . . . I so wish to love Him, to love Him as my seraphic Mother did, even to dying of it. We sing “O charitatis Victima” on her feast day, and that is my whole ambition: to be the prey of love! I think that in Carmel it is so simple to live by love; from morning to evening the Rule is there to express the will of God, moment by moment. If you knew how I love this Rule, which is the way He wants me to become holy. I do not know if I will have the happiness of giving my Bridegroom the witness of my blood [by martyrdom], but at least, if I fully live my Carmelite life, I have the consolation of wearing myself out for Him, for Him alone. Then what difference does the work He wills for me make? Since He is always with me, prayer, the heart-to-heart, must never end! I feel Him so alive in my soul. I have only to recollect myself to find Him within me, and that is my whole happiness. He has placed in my heart a thirst for the infinite and such a great need for love that He alone can satisfy it. I go to Him like a little child to its mother so He may fill, invade, everything, and then take me and carry me away in His arms. I think we must be so simple with God!

I am longing to send you my good Mama; you will see how God is working in this beloved soul. Sometimes I cry for happiness and gratitude; it is so good to be devoted to your mother, to feel that she, too, is completely His, to be able to tell her about your soul and to be completely understood! . . . You really are the great attraction of the trip, I assure you; I love to remember those vacations at Saint-Hilaire, then at Carcassonne and Labastide, they were the best ones I had. With what fatherly goodness you received the confidences I so loved to make to you; I would be happy if one day they could be made once again through my dear grilles. Won’t you come to bless your little Carmelite and, quite close to her, thank Him who “has loved her exceedingly,” for, you see, my happiness can no longer be expressed. Listen to what is being sung in my soul and all that is rising from the heart of the bride to the Heart of the Bridegroom for you whose little child she will always be. Send her your best blessing; at Holy Mass, bathe her in the Blood of the Bridegroom; it is the purity of the bride, and she is so thirsting for it! A Dieu, monsieur le Chanoine, affectionately and respectfully yours,

Sr. Elizabeth of the Trinity r.c.i.

Catez, Elizabeth of the Trinity. The Complete Works of Elizabeth of the Trinity volume 2: Letters from Carmel (pp. 110-111). ICS Publications. Kindle Edition.

 

Special thanks to Miriam Gutierrez for her readings of St. Elizabeth’s letters

For other episodes in the series visit
The Discerning Hearts “The Letters of St. Elizabeth of the Trinity” with Dr. Anthony Lilles’

Anthony Lilles, S.T.D. is an associate professor and the academic dean of Saint John’s Seminary in Camarillo as well as the academic advisor for Juan Diego House of Priestly Formation for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. For over twenty years he served the Church in Northern Colorado where he joined and eventually served as dean of the founding faculty of Saint John Vianney Theological Seminary in Denver. Through the years, clergy, seminarians, religious and lay faithful have benefited from his lectures and retreat conferences on the Carmelite Doctors of the Church and the writings of St. Elisabeth of the Trinity.
"51ZjgQ+tcgL._SY344_BO1,204,203,2</p

BTP- L5 – Letter 165 – The Letters of St. Elizabeth of the Trinity – Beginning to Pray w/Dr. Anthony Lilles podcast

Dr. Lilles continues the spiritual explorations of the Letters of St. Elizabeth of the Trinity. In this episode, we discuss letter 165, with a special focus on the power of the Eucharist and meets us in our suffering:

[ June 14, 1903]
Dijon Carmel, June 14
J. M. + J. T.

“Having loved His own who were in the world, He loved them to the end.”2

Monsieur l’Abbé, It seems to me that nothing better expresses the love in God’s Heart than the Eucharist: it is union, consummation, He in us, we in Him, and isn’t that Heaven on earth? Heaven in faith while awaiting the face-to-face vision we so desire. Then “we will be satisfied when His glory appears,”3 when we see Him in His light. Don’t you find that the thought of this meeting refreshes the soul, this talk with Him whom it loves solely? Then everything disappears and it seems that one is already entering into the mystery of God! . . .

This whole mystery is so much “ours,” as you said to me in your letter. Oh! pray, won’t you, that I may live fully my bridal dowry. That I may be wholly available, wholly vigilant in faith, so the Master can bear me wherever He wishes. I wish to stay always close to Him who knows the whole mystery, to hear everything from Him. “The language of the Word is the infusion of the gift,”4 oh yes, it is really so, isn’t it, that He speaks to our soul in silence. I find this dear silence a blessing. From Ascension to Pentecost, we were in retreat in the Cenacle, waiting for the Holy Spirit, and it was so good.5 During that whole Octave6 we have the Blessed Sacrament exposed in the oratory; those are divine hours spent in this little corner of Heaven where we possess the vision in substance under the humble Host. Yes, He whom the blessed contemplate in light and we adore in faith is really the same One. The other day someone wrote me such a beautiful thought, I send it on to you: “Faith is the face-to-face in darkness.”7 Why wouldn’t it be so for us, since God is in us and since He asks only to take possession of us as He took possession of the saints? Only, they were always attentive, as Père Vallée says: “They are silent, recollected, and their only activity is to be the being who receives.”8 Let us unite ourselves, therefore, Father, in making happy Him who “has loved us exceedingly,”9 as Saint Paul says. Let us make a dwelling for Him in our soul that is wholly at peace,10 in which the canticle of love, of thanksgiving, is always being sung; and then that great silence, the echo of the silence that is in God! . . . Then, as you said, let us approach the all-pure, all-luminous Virgin, that she may present us to Him whom she has penetrated so profoundly, and may our life be a continual communion, a wholly simple movement toward God. Pray to the Queen of Carmel for me; I, for my part, pray fervently for you, I assure you, and I remain with you in adoration and love! . . .

Sister Marie Elizabeth of the Trinity, r.c.i.

Catez, Elizabeth of the Trinity. The Complete Works of Elizabeth of the Trinity volume 2: Letters from Carmel (pp. 105-106). ICS Publications. Kindle Edition.

 

Special thanks to Miriam Gutierrez for her readings of St. Elizabeth’s letters

For other episodes in the series visit
The Discerning Hearts “The Letters of St. Elizabeth of the Trinity” with Dr. Anthony Lilles’

Anthony Lilles, S.T.D. is an associate professor and the academic dean of Saint John’s Seminary in Camarillo as well as the academic advisor for Juan Diego House of Priestly Formation for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. For over twenty years he served the Church in Northern Colorado where he joined and eventually served as dean of the founding faculty of Saint John Vianney Theological Seminary in Denver. Through the years, clergy, seminarians, religious and lay faithful have benefited from his lectures and retreat conferences on the Carmelite Doctors of the Church and the writings of St. Elisabeth of the Trinity.
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