The history of the sanctuary of Our Lady of Lourdes has recent origins. It all began on February 11, 1858, when the shepherdess Bernadette Soubirous fell into ecstasy at the feet of the Virgin Mary, who can be found in the sanctuary of Our Lady of Lourdes. Who appeared in a cave to say to her: “I am the Immaculate Conception.” Today it represents a pilgrimage site traveled by many faithful who come to this small French town from all over the world. Let’s find out what makes this place fascinating, its history, and the miracles that have occurred over time. Enjoy the reading!
The story of Our Lady of Lourdes
After the first apparition of the Immaculate Conception, a spring was born inside the cave, and from that day, the sick went there to pray, often finding healing. Lepers, people with paralysis, and cripples came from all over to obtain the miracle. This flow of pilgrims makes the town and sanctuary of the Lady of Lourdes the second tourist center in France after Paris and the third international pole of Catholicism.
TMan has continually inhabited this territory, but it was only after the first Marian apparitions that it became known worldwide. That February 11 was the first extended series ending only on July 16. In these few months, the faithful who lived near the cave or not far away began to frequent it until the local authorities decided to close it permanently. In October of the same year, Empress Eugenia, wife of Napoleon III. They decided to remove the barriers and reopen the cave to the public. The sanctuary of Lourdes recognized the apparitions of the Virgin Mother to Bernadette in all respects in 1862. Sometime after the first manifestation.
Just as in Fatima, Our Lady from the sanctuary of Lourdes recommended that the young woman observe the rosary recitation, especially with the saving prayer. The Madonna held a rosary during her apparitions while Bernadette recited the Ave Maria.
The Marian apparitions of Lourdes
Bernadette was only fourteen when she witnessed eighteen apparitions of a “beautiful lady” in a cave not far from the village. In this regard, the young woman said: “I saw a lady dressed in white. She wore a white dress, a white veil, a blue belt, and a yellow rose on her feet”. This image of the Madonna dressed in white with a blue belt around her waist and a yellow one on her feet became part of the typical iconography of Our Virgin Lady of Lourdes. In 1864, a Mary statue with Bernadette’s appearance was placed in the place indicated by the young peasant woman as the theater of the apparitions.
As mentioned, the first apparition took place on February 11, 1858. Bernadette was on the way to Massabielle to collect wood in the company of a sister and a friend. While she was intent on taking off her stockings to cross the River Gave, she heard a sound caused by the wind, and turning towards the cave, she saw a mysterious lady. Bernadette reports: “I saw a lady dressed in white. She wore a white dress, a white veil, a blue belt, and a yellow rose on each foot”. After making the cross sign, he joins her in reciting the rosary, and once the prayer is over, the mysterious Lady suddenly disappears.
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The Second apparition of Bernadette
On February 14, there was a second apparition. Bernadette insistently asked her mother to be allowed to return to the cave because she felt in the depths of her heart that she had to return. After reciting a decade of the rosary in front of the cave, the mysterious Lady appeared again. Bernadette threw her holy water, and the Lady bowed her head with her sweet smile. Once again, at the end of the rosary, she disappeared. On February 18, during the third apparition, for the first time, the Lady addressed Bernadette and said to her: “I don’t promise to make you happy in this world but in the next. Can you have the kindness to come here for fifteen days?”.
On February 19, there was her fourth apparition. Bernadette went to the cave with a blessed candle. During her fifth apparition, the Lady taught Bernadette a personal prayer, but at the end of her ghost, the girl was pervaded by infinite sadness. On February 21, there was the sixth apparition. Her word had now spread, and several people started following Bernadette to the cave. At the end of the shade, the girl is questioned by police commissioner Jacomet, eager to know everything she has seen, but she reports only “Aquero” (That one).
On February 23, during the seventh apparition, there were about 150 people following Bernadette. On this occasion, the girl receives a secret from the Lady that she must keep only for herself. During her eighth apparition, on February 24, the Lady turns to Bernadette, saying: “Penance! Penance! Pray to God for sinners! You will kiss the earth in atonement for sinners!”.
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The apparitions of Bernadette
We are halfway through the apparitions. On February 25, the ninth meeting with the Lady occurred, and about 300 people accompanied Bernadette. At the Lady’s request, the girl digs into the muddy ground, where she soon discovers a water spring. Bernadette says: “She told me to go and drink at the spring., and only found some muddy water. On the fourth test, I was able to drink. She also made me eat some grass that was near the spring. Then the vision disappeared. And then I left”. In front of the crowd that said to her: “Do you know that they think you are crazy doing such things?” She replied, “It’s for sinners.“
The tenth apparition takes place on February 27. Bernadette drinks the water from the spring and performs gestures of penance. This apparition is silent; the Lady does not speak. Around 800 people attend. On February 28, during her eleventh apparition, Bernadette prays, kisses the earth, and walks on her knees as a sign of penance. About 1,000 people arrived on this occasion. At the end of the apparition, she is taken to the home of Judge Ribes and threatened with being taken to prison.
For the first time, a priest is present during the twelfth apparition on March 1. Along with 1,500 people. And it is precisely on this occasion that the first alleged miracle occurs during the night: a woman named Caterina Latapie. Loubajac dips a sprained arm in the spring water and regains her limb’s mobility.
The Lady reveals her name.
The thirteenth apparition occurs on March 2. The Lady turns to Bernadette and says: “Tell the priests to come here in procession and build a chapel.” Bernadette reports her request to the parish priest of Lourdes, priest Peyramale, who is only interested in one piece of information: the name of the Lady, who is still unknown. Furthermore, he demanded proof; he wanted to see the cave’s rose garden bloom in the middle of winter.
On March 3, there was the fourteenth apparition. Bernadette goes to the cave early in the morning, followed by about 3,000 people. The shade, however, did not happen. After school, the girl hears the inner invitation of her Lady: she then goes back to the cave and asks her name. The Lady replied with a smile. Again the parish priest insisted, saying: “If the lady wants a chapel, let her name her and make the rose garden in the grotto bloom.” On March 4, during her fifteenth apparition and surrounded by 8,000 people, the girl awaited the miracle. Instead, her vision turned out to be silent. So the parish priest Peyramale stood firm in his position.
Over the next 20 days, Bernadette no longer heard the Lady’s inner invitation, so she never went to the cave again. On March 25, the sixteenth apparition took place. Finally, the mysterious Lady revealed her name, answering the question. With words pronounced in the Gascon dialect: “Que soy era Immaculada Councepciou,” or “I am the Immaculate Conception. “
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On April 7, the seventeenth apparition occurred. The Sanctuary of our Lady of Lourdes holds a lighted candle inside, the flame enveloping her hand without burning it. This episode was verified by a doctor present at the apparition, Doctor Dozois.
And finally, the eighteenth apparition, on July 16. Bernadette still feels that mysterious inner call that pushes her to reach the cave. In the meantime, the police denied access and closed the cave area with a grating. Bernadette then goes to the opposite bank of the Gave in front of the cave. She reports that she saw the Lady nearby like the other times. Just as if she had been in front of the cave. So she says: “I seemed to be in front of the cave, at the same distance as the other times. I only saw the Virgin; I have never seen her so Beautiful!”. This was the story of the sanctuary of Lourdes from Lourdes, France.