Contact Us

Use the form on the right to contact us.

You can edit the text in this area, and change where the contact form on the right submits to, by entering edit mode using the modes on the bottom right. 

United States


Delicious Encouragement for Mothers from Blessed Elizabeth of the Trinity

alec vanderboom

(Blessed Elizabeth of the Trinity is a Carmelite nun who was a contemporary of the Little Flower. While the Little Flower perfected the "little way" of service to God, Blessed Elizabeth grasped this notion that the Trinity dwells within us. So we don't just have the "Holy Spirit" after baptism, the Trinity is so interconnected that we can look inside our soul in "contemplation" and gaze upon the Holy Spirit, Jesus the son, and God the Father in heaven. Whew! Heady Stuff.

Unlike the Little Flower whose sisters all became nuns like herself, Elizabeth's only sister married. Elizabeth loved the vocation of marriage. She respected her sister. She was really committed to teaching her how to reach the similar heights of prayer as herself within her daily duties as a mother of infant children. I love that about Elizabeth. She's such a cheerleader for those of us trying to pray better within the vocation of marriage.)

Here is a letter written August 13, 1905 (L 239, pg 214 in vol 2 of Elizabeth's Letters)

My dear little sister,

Today is Sunday, the most blessed of days, because I spend it before the Blessed Sacrament exposed in the oratory, except for the time when I'm at the turn. while carrying out my duties as Portress. I'm coming have a chat with you in the sight of Him we love. I have taken a large sheet of paper, for when I am with my Guite, there are so many things to say....

First of all, thanks for your nice long letter; you can imagine my joy when I recognized your handwriting, and that joy doubled when I felt how thick it was. I said to myself: "In all that, surely she will peak to me a little bit about her soul," for you know I love it so much when you allow me to enter your Heaven that the Holy Spirit creates in you.

Dear little mama, how worried you must have been about Sabeth! But a beautiful Angel was watching over her, and he was guarding her from all evil for you. I hope she won't cause you any more of that anxiety. We must see all that in the light of God and say "thank you" to Him just the same and always. I know from one of Mama's letters that you are tired, and I beg you to be very wise and sleep well, you need that so much. Do you remember how I knew how to take care of you? I think that I've always been a little like a mother with you, and I hope your two angels may be as united as we; it would be impossible for them to be more so, wouldn't it? I have just been reading in Saint Paul some splendid things on the mystery of divine adoption. Naturally--I thought of you--It would have been quite extraordinary if I hadn't, for you are a mother and know what depths of love God has placed in your heart for your children, so you can grasp the grandeur of this mystery to be children of God, my Guite, doesn't that thrill you? Listen to what my dear Saint Paul says: "God chose us in Him, before creation. He predestined us to be the adoption of children in order to make the glory of His grace blaze forth," which means that in His omnipotence He seems to have been able to do nothing greater. And then listen again: "If we are children, we are heirs as well." And what is that inheritance? "God has made us worthy of having a share in the inheritance of the saints in light." And then, as if to tell us that this is not off in some distant future, the Apostle adds "You are therefore no longer guests or strangers, but you belong to the city of saints and the House of God." And again" Our life is in Heaven." Of! my Guite, this Heaven, this house of our Father, is in the "center of our soul." As you will see in Saint John of the Cross, when we are in our deepest center, we are in God. Isn't that simple, isn't it consoling? Through everything, in the midst of your cares as a mother, while you give yourself to your little angels, you can withdraw into this solitude to surrender yourself to the Holy Spirit so He can transform you in God and imprint in your soul the Image of the divine Beauty, so the Father bending over you lovingly, will see only HIs Christ and say "This is my beloved daughter, in whom I am well pleased." Oh little sister, in Heaven I will rejoice to see my most beautiful Christ in your soul; I won't be jealous, but with a mother's pride I will say to Him: It is I, poor wretch, who have brought forth this soul to your life. This is how Saint Paul spoke of his followers, and I am quite presumptuous enough to want to imitate him; what do you think? While waiting, "Let us elieve in love," with Sain John, and since we posses Him within us, what does it matter if nights oscure the heaven; if Jesus seems to be asleep, oh, let us rest near Him, let us be very calm and silent; let us not wake Him but wait in faith. When Sabeth and Odette are in their dear mama's arms, I doubt if they worry much about whether there is sunshine or rain; le us imitate the dear little ones and live in the arms of God with the same simplicity.

I received a letter for Mama when she arrived. She seems very happy about her stay, but she tells me her stomach is bothering her; I hope she is doing better. you are really going to miss her, but I agree with you that she will rest better there, and I wrote to her that she shouldn't have any second thoughts. And you, my Guite, your big park attracts me; solitude is so good, and I know your dear little soul can appreciate it. Would you like to join me on a month-long retreat until September 14? Our Mother is giving me a little vacation from the turn; I won't have to talk or think any more, and I am going to buy myself in the dept of my soul, that is, in God. Do you want to follow me in this very simple movement? When you're distracted by your many duties, I will try to compensate, and if you like, in order to recollect yourself, every hour when you think of it (and if you forget it doesn't matter) you can enter into the center of your soul where the Divine Guest dwells; you could think of those beautiful words I told you: "Your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who dwells within you." .... and those from the Master: "Remain in me, and I in you"... It is said that Saint Catherine of Sienna always lived in a cell, even though in the midst of the world; that was because she lived in that inner dwelling place where my Guite too knows how to live! A Dieu, little sister. I can't stop myself. I've written a journal! I've written it at several sittings which explains my delay. I'm sending a kiss for all three of you, as I love you. Your big sister and little mother.

Sr. E. of the Trinity, r.c.i.