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Br Francois to Br Emery, St Genis Laval, 17 January 1859

LFF 2: 324-325

Introduction and translation by Br Edward Clisby FMS


After his return from New Zealand in 1854, Emery had been working as tailor at the Hermitage. When Bataillon appealed for a brother tailor for the missions on his 1857 visit, Emery was happy to respond, although he appears to have had mixed motives (rf L 141 [2]). When Francois wrote this letter he was indeed in his workshop at Villa Maria, but in July he was helping Junillon at Bataillon’s seminary for Pacific islanders at Clydesdale, outside Sydney. His earlier letter to Francois is not extant.

Text of the Letter

Dear Brother,
The interesting details you give me in your letter about your pleasant crossing have given me real pleasure, and my just satisfaction is redoubled by learning that you are enjoying good health and perfect contentment in your new residence. You appear to be at ease, cheerful, and joyful. Try to keep yourself always in this happy state which is so pleasing to God, so useful for yourself and so edifying for your neighbour. The Fathers and Brothers must have been very happy to have you aboard to console, encourage and serve them.
You see how Providence arranges everything and causes all to contribute to the good and advantage of those who entrust themselves to it. Be always in its hands like a child in the arms of its tender father, casting on his breast all your worries with entire confidence. When you are at work in your workshop, represent to yourself the very holy Virgin applied to sewing, mending, or making garments for the holy Child Jesus and for Saint Joseph, and unite yourself with the feelings, intentions, and dispositions of this loveable and venerable family, leading a hidden, poor and hardworking life in Nazareth.
I have written a long circular for all the Brothers of Oceania. You will find in it interesting details about the trip to Rome and the new house of St Genis-Laval. So I will confine myself to renewing especially my affectionate greetings and those of the Fathers and Brothers who embrace you and pray for you with all their hearts.
I am always very cordially yours…. F.F.

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