A Mother's Spiritual Diary

Visit to the Cemetery

"What a sad day for my heart, the heart of a wife and mother, was this day, my husband's birthday... Overcoming my feelings, I went to his tomb with my children to spend the morning there, right near his remains, praying and weeping... I recalled at that time how Jesus wept over Lazarus... How real, my God, as a subject for meditation! That death is something terrible, something serious! Thinking of death one weighs time versus eternity, good versus evil, the passing and the ephemeral versus the real and the eternal. My God! How much I reflected, suffered and understood. The soil which covers him whom I loved so much, is still moist and has been recently turned. My children's and my own tears moistened this soil, this dust out of which we have been formed and to which we shall return. Then there passed through my imagination, in rapid flight, the years gone by and memories of them: sorrows, joys and dreams, in an instant all had vanished, like smoke at the breath of death.

"Oh! how ephemeral is life! How short our existence! How near to each other are the present and the past! What do we do when this time is not employed for God alone?" (Diary, Oct. 4, 1901).