“Mom was talking to me and thought it would be a good idea if I told you, in one letter for all three of you, some of the details pertaining to our trip to Lafayette, Louisiana, when we took Kathleen down there to enter the Carmelite Monastery,” he penned. He wrote of departing around noon on the day of Sept. 21, after allowing his two youngest daughters, Anne and Maggie, to stay home from school in order to spend as much time as possible with their sister Kathleen before the trip.
After stopping and visiting with various family acquaintances along the way, the Mullins arrived at Lafayette’s Carmelite Monastery—which was then located on College Avenue—at approximately 3:00 p.m. on Sept. 23. “I stopped the car in front of a beautiful home and yard directly behind and next to the big vine-covered wall behind the monastery,” Mr. Mullins wrote. “The place was so beautiful I asked the lady of the house, Mrs. Gauthier, if I could take some pictures of Kathleen in her gardens with the monastery walls and trees in the background. She was glad to comply and told us what a wonderful person the mother prioress was and she made us feel good telling Kathleen how lucky she was and how happy she’d be. Kath, of course, didn’t need that encouragement because her mind had been so completely set the whole world couldn’t change it.”
Now, nearly 60 years later, young Kathleen is known as Mother Regina of Christ the King. Physically she may no longer be the 17-year-old girl that her father photographed in front of Mrs. Gauthier’s home on College Avenue, but spiritually, her conviction to the Carmelite life has kept her jovial, steadfast and strong.
“On September 24th, I will be 60 years in Carmel,” she recently wrote to remind her five siblings in very much the same way her father did all those years ago. “When I entered, one of the first things that caught my eye was a sign that said: ‘I have brought you into the land of Carmel, to eat its fruits and the best things thereof.’
“There can be no doubt but that it was Our Lady herself who brought me into her
land of Carmel and, of course, the most blessed ‘fruit’ she has given me is the fruit of her womb, Jesus! All other ‘fruits’ of the land of Carmel flow from him.
“After many years, I can truthfully say: life gets better and better,” Mother Regina says. “From Kansas to Carmel and then to Heaven is the road Jesus mapped out for me.”
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