Letters of Maria Celeste:
13 March 1631
Most Beloved Lord Father
I no longer stand astonished by the extreme fervor of the affection you bear me, Sire, for you have given me too many signs and expressions of it; but I am indeed amazed that the love reaches so far beyond what I am capable of predicting, by your sending me a delicacy better suited to my taste and my health than any other Lenten food whatsoever. Therefore I thank you from the bottom of my heart, and I am prepared to enjoy it with doubled pleasure, knowing it was made by those hands I love and respect so much. And now that you order me to ask for another dish I like, I would request something for the evening meal, and as for the rest, please, Sire, put it out of your thoughts; because when I do have need of something, I will let it be known, confident that I can do so with complete security. I cannot wait to see you again together with the baby, provided that it is not on a holy day because duties would prohibit us from welcoming you properly then.
I leave it to you to judge, Sire, whether the favor you intend to obtain from Monsignor Archbishop will console me; but I cannot resolve the matter just yet. I will spend some time with the Mother Abbess, and as soon as it becomes possible I shall let you know what I have been able to find out. Meanwhile I come to the end of this letter, without ever coming to the end of my loving regards for you. And I pray Our Lord to bless you.
From San Matteo, the 13th day of March 1630.*
Your most affectionate daughter,
*On the Florentione calendar the new yead began on 25 March
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