Our Lady of Lourdes is the name of a Marian apparition that took place in Lourdes, France in 1858 to a young girl named Bernadette. When she was just 13 years old, Bernadette was collecting wood near a grotto next to a riverbank. While looking at the cave, it was suddenly filled with light. She saw a woman dressed in a white robe with a blue sash, and a veil on her head. On her feet were two yellow roses. In her hands, she clasped a rosary. The woman asked Bernadette to pray the rosary with her. When they finished, the woman disappeared. Bernadette returned to the grotto the following Sunday and then a third time. The lady then spoke to her and requested that she come to the grotto every day for the next fifteen days. During those visits, she asked Bernadette to pray for the conversion of sinners, to ask the priests to build a chapel on that spot, and to drink water from the stream. Eventually, the woman revealed to Bernadette that she was Mary, the Mother of Jesus. She wanted Bernadette to pray for sinners.
Bernadette’s visits to the grotto began to draw attention. Some believed her and some did not that she was having visions of Mary and speaking with her. They watched as she received messages from Mary and did the things she asked of her. This included scraping away at the dirt next to the cave until a spring of water gushed forth.
Eventually, Bernadette was listened to and the grotto became a place of worship. The water from the spring was seen as holy and many miracles occurred from it.
When she was 22 years old, Bernadette became a nun. She dedicated her life to God and died when she was 36 years old.
The Shrine of Our Lady of Lourdes is visited by more than 3 million pilgrims every year. The spring continues to gush forth and is still used for healing both physically and spiritually.
Our Lady of Lourdes, pray for us!
We have a Rosary Bracelet dedicated to Our Lady of Lourdes, which you can find here.