- (Photo: Reuters)
A series of newly discovered letters written by Jacqueline Kennedy to an Irish priest reveal how she struggled with her belief in God and faith after the assassination of John F. Kennedy.
The letters, which are expected to be sold for over $1 million by an Irish auction house in June, give a rare glimpse into her life while she was the first lady and how she had become "bitter against God" during the aftermath of her husband's death.
"I have to think there is a God – or I have no hope of finding Jack again," she wrote in one letter, according to The Independent. "God will have a bit of explaining to do to me if I ever see Him. … I feel more cruelly every day what I have lost – I always would have rather lost my life than lost Jack."
Kennedy's letters to Father Joseph Leonard, whom she met when she was 21, during a visit to Ireland with her stepbrother in 1950, are considered to be her unofficial autobiography, according to the Mirror.
Her 14-year correspondence also chronicles how she worried that Kennedy would be unfaithful to her in marriage as she wrote, "He's like my father in a way – loves the chase and is bored with the conquest – and once married needs proof he's still attractive, so flirts with other women and resents you. I saw how that nearly killed Mummy. "
Prior to marrying Kennedy in 1953, she wrote about his political aspirations and her doubts that he would even want to marry her.
"Maybe it (his political career) will end very happily – or maybe since he's this old and set in his ways and cares so desperately about his career he just won't want to give up that much time to extra-curricular things like marrying me!," Kennedy wrote. "… I think he was as much in love with me as he could be with anyone and now maybe he will want to get married because a senator needs a wife, but if he ever does ask me to marry him it will be for rather practical reasons – because his career is this driving thing with him."
After becoming a widow, Kennedy reached out to Leonard saying that her husband's death had left her battling to make "peace with God."
"I think God must have taken Jack to show the world how lost we would be without him – but that is a strange way of thinking to me," Kennedy wrote.
Her 33 letters are expected to be sold on June 10.