The Feast of Our Lady of Lourdes


On December 8, 1854, Pope Pius IX proclaimed the dogma of the Immaculate Conception in the apostolic constitution Ineffabilis Deus. A little more than three years later, on February 11, 1858, a young lady appeared to Bernadette Soubirous. This began a series of visions. During the apparition on March 25, the lady identified herself with the words: “I am the Immaculate Conception.”

Bernadette was a sickly child of poor parents. Their practice of the Catholic faith was scarcely more than lukewarm. Bernadette could pray the Our Father, the Hail Mary and the Creed. She also knew the prayer of the Miraculous Medal: “O Mary conceived without sin.”

During interrogations Bernadette gave an account of what she saw. It was “something white in the shape of a girl.” She used the word “aquero”, a dialect term meaning “this thing.” It was “a pretty young girl with a rosary over her arm.”

Her white robe was encircled by a blue girdle. She wore a white veil. There was a yellow rose on each foot. A rosary was in her hand. Bernadette was also impressed by the fact that the lady did not use the informal form of address (tu), but the polite form (vous). The humble virgin appeared to a humble girl and treated her with dignity.

Through that humble girl, Mary revitalized and continues to revitalize the faith of millions of people. People began to flock to Lourdes from other parts of France and from all over the world. In 1862 Church authorities confirmed the authenticity of the apparitions and authorized the cult of Our Lady of Lourdes for the diocese. The Feast of Our Lady of Lourdes became worldwide in 1907.

Lourdes has become a place of pilgrimage and healing, but even more of faith. Church authorities have recognized over 60 miraculous cures, although there have probably been many more. To people of faith this is not surprising. It is a continuation of Jesus’ healing miracles—now performed at the intercession of his mother. Some would say that the greater miracles are hidden.

Many who visit Lourdes return home with renewed faith and a readiness to serve God in their needy brothers and sisters. There still may be people who doubt the apparitions of Lourdes. Perhaps the best that can be said to them are the words that introduce the film Song of Bernadette: “For those who believe in God, no explanation is necessary. For those who do not believe, no explanation is possible.



  1. God bless! May the Almighty Lord be Praised! He used Our Lady of Lourdes to heal my wife, Helen, of her severe rheumatoid arthritis and osteo porrhosis. In June 1996, together with 40 members of the Singapore St. Francis Xavier’s Church, Serangoon Garden, we went on pilgrimages to Vatican, Assisi, Lourdes, Fatima and SantaRem. She was on the wheel-chair. Very shortly after her Lourdes bath, she experienced immediate healing. Prior to this event, she could not walk more than 10 meters without need to stop and rest. After the healing, she passed her wheel-chair to another lady. We have a video of pre- and post-events.

  2. Praise the Lord for giving us such a tender and caring Mother. I too went to Lourdes on pilgramage, something I had wanted to do since I was a little girl. I had a little miracle there as well. I suffered from severe swollen ankles – so bad that I could hardly walk at all. We were touring several shrines in France and had arrived in Lourdes via the super train from Paris. No matter what I did , night after night of elevating my legs, cold baths, ice packs, nothing made my legs go down. I was crying the night we arrived because I wanted to go to the rosary procession and it was pouring rain to boot. I was determined after hear the voice of my long dead grandmother in my head instruct me to go to the grotto, rain or no rain. My husband was with me as I hobbled and cried. We passed the fountain and my husband decided to put a little bit of the water on my feet. I had an immediate warm sensation and was able to process and say the rosary with the other pilgrams without pain. The warm sensation continued all evening and in the hotel. By morning my feet and ankles were normal again. That day I went to thank Our Lady and at the base of her statue was wild daisies growing. My grandmother’s name was Daisy.

  3. Our Lady, please pray for love n peace in the world…also for the sick, the poor, the holy souls in purgatory n for all who have no one to pray for them….Amen!

  4. all year we raise money for the young people of our parish ro go to Lourdesas red shirts and helpers The changes in the young people when they are there is amazing the care and compassion they show to others andwhen they returnthiit stays with them all these young people go to mass regularly andthey have taken an overgrown piece of ground by the church hall andare making it into a garden to say thankyou to the parisioners for helping them to get to Lourdes our Lady as certainly blessed thes young people I hope we can help many more young people to recieve our Lady s blessings in this way its wonderful

  5. Thank You, Almighty God, our Father, Lord Jesus Christ and Holy Spirit for giving to us our Holy Mother Mary and all the blessings she is. For her example of faith, trust and pity! Thank You for Bernadette and all the Saints and our personal saints in our lives! Thank You for my salvation and helping me in all things and for my health. Glory to You, Father, Son and Holy Spirit forever and ever, Amen!

  6. Oh Mother Mary, how I adore thee. Just the thought of your name brings peace to my mind, body and soul. I long to meet thee in Heaven. Please pray for my family. Please pray for the health of my mother and father. Thank you for the good news from my fathers skin cancer surgery. Please intercede in my life. I have been so anxious. So anxious it makes me ill. Please pray that the worry that is dwelling inside of me goes away.


  7. Blessed Mother Mary, please bless all the children in my family. May your Son Jesus Christ with His healing powers help to heal my brother Rene, my sister Ruby and my grandson Sebastian. May they all be healed. I pray that my niece Maria be healed of all her additions and change her life for the better. I pray for the end of child abuse in this world. I ask this in the name of your son Jesus Christ.