My Discovery of Little Sister Magdeleine

God took me by the hand

'Of course, I also found in the book the woman of faith who summarised the history of the congregation she had founded in those few simple words: 'God took me by the hand and I followed blindly'. Behind the ordinary accounts of building work and riding lessons, of relations with the Arabs or with her elderly mother, of the long routes she covered on foot across France and elsewhere, an invisible presence let itself be felt - a constant though not explicitly defined relationship with God. More than once she wrote of how 'her life was decided by something other than herself’. I noted the not infrequent veiled references: she felt herself 'pursued by a very clear idea'. 'The Holy Spirit is blowing a gale', she wrote on several occasions when ideas were coming to her in abundance. Along the roads she travelled alone in France, 'meditation was easy'. The desert evoked in her the desire to pray, beauty revealed God. 'Our work comes from God' she wrote to the Little Sisters at le Tubet in 1942, 'it will live despite the limitations of its instruments'. When, in 1946, at Sainte Baume, she experienced the sudden certainty that the Fraternity was to spread throughout the world and become 'universal', she actually said openly that this certainty could only come from God, because she for her part only wanted to consecrate the Fraternity to the world of Islam.
I found in full the sense of instrumentality and the spirituality of St Paul to the Galatians(2.20) - 'I live no longer I but Christ who lives in me' - that I had expected.