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St. Bernadette was born at Lourdes, France. Her parents were very poor and she herself was in poor health. Quite young, she had already suffered from digestive trouble, then after having just escaped being a victim of the cholera epidemic of 1855, she experienced painful attacks of asthma. One Thursday, February 11, 1858, when she was sent with her younger sister and a friend to gather firewood, a very beautiful Lady appeared to her above a rose bush in a grotto called Massabielle. The lovely Lady was dressed in blue and white. She smiled at Bernadette and then made the sign of the cross with a rosary of ivory and gold. Bernadette fell on her knees, took out her own rosary and began to pray the rosary. The beautiful Lady was God\'s Mother, the Blessed Virgin Mary. She appeared to Bernadette seventeen other times and spoke with her. She told Bernadette that she should pray sinners, do penance and have a chapel built there in her honor. Many people did not believe Bernadette when she spoke of her vision. She had to suffer much. But one day Our Lady told Bernadette to dig in the mud. As she did, a spring of water began to flow. The next day it continued to grow larger and larger. Many miracles happened when people began to use this water. When Bernadette was older, she became a nun. She was always very humble. More than anything else, she desired not to be praised. Her feast day is April 16th.
Saint Bernadette of Lourdes
O God, protector and lover of the humble, You bestowed on Your servant, Bernadette, the favour of the vision of Our Lady, the Immaculate Virgin Mary, and of speech with her. Grant that we may deserve to behold you in heaven. Amen.
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Our Lady of Lourdes, Roman Catholic Church in France, Marian shrines, Bernadette Soubirous, Lourdes, Rosary, Lourdes apparitions
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