She was a daughter of a farmer in the neighborhood of Toulouse, blind from her birth, she died in 1855, at the age of forty-five. Her great pleasure was to teach the Catechism. When the Catechism was modified, she had no problem to teach the new one, as she knew both by heart. One dark winter’s night, when she was returning from a peregrination of several leagues in company with her aunt – the two women having to pass through a forest by paths that were in a frightful state, full of mud, and cut up with dangerous holes and ditches, demanding great precaution to avoid falling in – her aunt wished to lead her by the hand, but she refused, saying: “Do not be uneasy about me; I am in no danger of falling, for I see, just before me, a light that shows me the way. Follow me; it is I who will lead you.” They reached home, thus, without accident, the blind woman leading the one who had her eyesight. She was evoked, in Paris, in 1865.
Q. Will you kindly tell us what was the light that guided you on that dark night, and that was only visible for you?
A. Is it possible that persons, who, like yourselves, are in constant communication with spirits, can need an explication of such a fact? It was my Guardian Angel who guided me.
Q. We suppose that such was the case, but we wished to have your confirmation of our supposition. Were you conscious, at the time that it was your Guardian Angel who was acting as your guide?
A. No, and yet I believed it was a celestial protection. I had so often prayed God to take pity on me! It is so dreadful to be blind! Yes, it is very dreadful; but I admit that it is perfectly just. Those who sin with the eyes must be punished through the eyes; and so with all the faculties of which men make a bad use. Do not imagine that there is any other cause, for the numerous ills that afflict the human race, than the true one, viz., expiation; expiation which is of no avail unless submitted to with resignation, but which may be rendered less painful, if, by prayer, you attract the spiritual influences that protect the inmates of the human penitentiary, and pour hope and consolation into the hearts of the afflicted.
Q. You had devoted yourself to teaching the Catechism to the children of the poor; had you any trouble in acquiring the necessary knowledge for the teaching of the Catechism, which you knew by heart, in spite of your poor sight and the modification it had received?
A. The other senses of the blind are, in general, doubly acute. The observation is not about the least important faculty of their nature. Their memory is like a file cabinet in which are deposited, in an orderly manner and forever, the teaching according to the tendencies and inclinations. Since nothing from the outside has the possibility of perturbing that faculty, results therefore, in its being able to develop in a notable fashion through education.
But such was not my case, for I was totally uneducated. I had learned the Catechism by heart, and I understood it sufficiently to be able to fulfill the mission of devotedness to children which I had accepted, and thus to make reparation for the bad example I had set them in my former existence. Everything may furnish serious study for Spiritists; for this, they have only to look around them, seeking an explanation of the facts of life in their luminous doctrine, which will be much more useful to them than troubling themselves with the pretended philosophies of certain spirits who amuse themselves at the expense of their mediums, putting forth a mass of pompous absurdities that only flatter their vanity, and that explain none of the problems of human life.
Q. We infer, from your language, that you are as advanced, intellectually, as your conduct on Earth showed you to be morally.
A. I have still much to acquire; but there are many, upon the Earth, which pass for being ignorant, because their intelligence is veiled by the atonement; at death, that veil falls away, and those who passed for ignorant are then seen to be farther advanced in knowledge than those who despised them. Believe-me, pride is the touchstone that decides the quality of men. Those whose heart is accessible to flatteries, which are too confident of their own knowledge, are on the wrong road; they are not sincerely devoted to the search after truth. (Remember the words of Christ: “He that humbles himself shall be exalted.”) Be humble like the Christ, and like Him, carry your cross with love in order to gain access to the Kingdom of Heaven FRANÇOISE VERNHES