Excerpt: ...come at the close of the long life of Mary Antony; just as the moon begins as a sickle turned one way and, after coming to the full, wanes at length to a sickle turned the other way; so, after ninety years of life's pilgrimage, Mary Antony was a little child again-and of such is the Kingdom of Heaven; and to such the Divine will is ...Read MoreExcerpt: ...come at the close of the long life of Mary Antony; just as the moon begins as a sickle turned one way and, after coming to the full, wanes at length to a sickle turned the other way; so, after ninety years of life's pilgrimage, Mary Antony was a little child again-and of such is the Kingdom of Heaven; and to such the Divine will is most easily revealed. The Prioress was conscious that she and the Bishop-the wise and prudent-had so completely arrived at decisions, along the lines of their own points of view, that their minds were not ready to receive a Divine unveiling. But the simple, childlike mind of the old lay-sister, full only of humble faith and loving devotion, was ready; and to her the manifestation came. No shade of doubt as to the genuineness of the vision entered the mind of the Prioress. She and the Bishop alone knew of the Knight's intrusion into the Nunnery, and of her interview with him in her cell. Before going in search of the intruder, she had ordered Mary Antony to the kitchens; and disobedience to a command of the Reverend Mother, was a thing undreamed of in the Convent. Afterwards, her anxiety lest any question should come up concerning the return of a twenty-first White Lady when but twenty had gone, was completely set at rest by that which had seemed to her old Antony's fortunate mistake in believing herself to have been mistaken. In recounting the fictitious vision, with an almost uncanny cleverness, Mary Antony had described the Knight, not as he had appeared in the Prioress's cell, in tunic and hose, a simple dress of velvet and cloth, but in full panoply as a Knight-Crusader. The shining armour and the blood-red cross, fully in keeping with the vision, would have precluded the idea of an eye-witness of the actual scene, had such a thought unconsciously suggested itself to the Prioress. As it was, it seemed beyond question that all the knowledge of Hugh shewn by the old lay-sister, of his person his attitude, his very...Read Less
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