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Who has not heard of Sister Rosalie, the saintly Superior of the house of the Sisters of Charity on rue de l’Épée-de-Bois!
This holy Sister was thin, weak, delicate; but her zeal gave her an astonishing strength. It was in her faith, her love for God and her tender devotion to the Blessed Virgin that she drew the heroic strength that made her endure all the hardships, and the superhuman courage that made her insensitive to danger.
One day, a horrible, frightening riot was rumbling through Paris; since the morning, the cannon had been ravaging the church of Sainte-Geneviève, a sanctuary that had been opened and closed so many times to worship.
The wounded officers were taken to the Sisters on the rue de l’Épée-de-Bois. Sister Rosalie is everywhere, she administers help to all. She called back to life those who could be healed, she provided religious assistance, and she reconciled with heaven those who were about to die.
Suddenly she was called with fear: a troop of insurgents was at the door, they wanted to slit the throats of the wounded who had just been dressed, they roared, they were going to break down the door.
Sister Rosalie prayed; and the Blessed Virgin sent her a heroic inspiration: she opened the door that was going to be broken down and presented herself alone on the threshold of this door, in front of this furious band, drunk with blood.
“What do you want, gentlemen?” she said gently, but with authority. “We want our enemies that you hide from us. – Gentlemen, here there are neither friends nor enemies, there are only wounded, and we are bandaging them; they are our brothers in Jesus Christ, like you. You will only go to them by passing over my body; they would only go to you wounded by immolating me.”
This simplicity, this courage, moved these misguided men, they withdrew; and this weak woman saved strong and hardened men who could no longer defend themselves, she preserved them from death; but she did more, for she saved from a crime those who wanted to murder them.
Who gave Sister Rosalie this heroic strength? Your love, O God! the habit she had acquired of imitating the Blessed Virgin, who followed her Son to the foot of the Cross, suffering His sufferings and not fearing to show herself as His Mother, when His scattered Apostles denied Him and hid.
Sister Rosalie died and is now venerated as a Saint. A poor daughter of Charity had a convoy that would be envied by a prince: all the great ones honored themselves by following her, and all the little ones escorted her, crying more than a benefactor, a mother.
Sign of the Cross
In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, and of the Mother of God. Amen.
O Jesus! We are going to walk with You on the road to Calvary which was so painful for You. Make us understand the greatness of Your sufferings, touch our hearts with tender compassion at the sight of Your torments, in order to increase in us the regret of our faults and the love we wish to have for You.
Deign to apply to all of us the infinite merits of Your Passion, and in memory of Your sorrows, show mercy to the souls in Purgatory, especially to those who are most abandoned.
O Divine Mary, who first taught us to make the Way of the Cross, obtain for us the grace to follow Jesus with the sentiments Your Heart was filled with as You accompanied Him on the road to Calvary. Grant that we may weep with You, and that we may love Your divine Son as You do. We ask this in the name of His adorable Heart. Amen.