Tuesday, 9 March 2010

I MISSED ONE! 15TH Apparition

Thursday 4th of March

And so the main 14 days of apparitions come to an end. Again, Bernadette returned to the grotto with her Rosary and asked the Lady's name as she had been told to by the priest. In her own words:

"The third time I went to see M. le Curé, to tell him that a Lady had ordered me to go and say to the priests that they were to have a chapel built there, he looked at me for a moment, and then he said to me in a rather gruff tone, 'Who is this lady?' I answered that I did not know. Then he commissioned me to ask her name and to come and tell him. The next day when I arrived at the grotto I recited my rosary and then asked her, from M. le Curé what her name was, but all she did was to smile. When I got back I went to M. le Curé to tell him that I discharged his commission, and her only response was her smile; then he said she was laughing at me and that I would do well not to go to her again. But, I could not help going."

The Lady smiled once more but the vision was silent. The crowd was now far too large to put an exact number on but a conservative estimate is 8000 people. Bernadette's focus remained compete. The crowd was waiting for the miracle that would prove the Lady's divinity. It did not come and Peyramale, along with many others were unimpressed and took this as proof of their suspicions.

The grotto stood for the next twenty days with no visits from Bernadette or her Aquiro. The Lady would only appear another three times. However, the next apparition would cause the greatest commotion of all. On Thursday the 25th of March the Lady would reveal her name.

Wednesday, 3 March 2010

Anniversary of the 14th Apparition

Wednesday 3rd of March

Bernadette arrived early in the morning on this day as this was when the Lady most often appeared. As always Bernadette seemed focused only on seeing the Lady and was undisturbed by Peyramale's comments of the day before. Like Mary's, Bernadette's faith was unwavering and she did not falter in her belief that she must go to the grotto as she had been asked. She would later say in her usual direct and simple manner 'I have nothing to say because I have always told the truth'.

However, early as Bernadette was and surrounded by a crowd of THREE THOUSAND people the Lady did not appear and Bernadette left for school disheartened. However, in the evening she was compelled to go back to the grotto and there she met once more with the Lady she so loved to look on.

Bernadette had been told by Peyremale to ask the Lady for her name. He had also asked that the Lady make the rosebush flower as proof of her existence. Ever faithful Bernadette repeated this message from the priest but the Lady simply smiled back at the girl gazing upon her, bowed a little and smiled

Anniversary of the 13th Apparition

Tuesday 2nd of March

At this apparition the Lady would make two requests that are staples of the modern Lourdes - one a chapel and the other procession. Bernadette would later tell how the Lady asked quite simply:

"Go, tell the priests to come here in procession and to build a chapel here”

That is exactly what Bernadette did- taking the short walk up to the house of Peyramale who was a generous but firm priest - known for his clarity and his temper. Little Bernadette, a peasant girl who would be indistinguishable from any other village peasant was accompanied by her two Aunts. The Soubirous family were still rather sceptical about the visions themselves. They were practical people but they also knew Bernadette and that all her life she had been unequivocally honest. They knew that she would not deceive them and therefore they walked with her. Peyramale's reputation was not without foundation - Bernadette repeated the Lady's request and aggravated his famous temper. He asked her if she or the Lady had any money. Bernadette shook her head- she had to admit she had nothing - not even a penny.
'Neither do I!' shouted Peyramale.
Peyramale told Bernadette that if the Lady wanted a chapel the least she could do was mention her name. He said that before she got anything she should make the wild rose bushes flower - a miracle to prove that she was
deserving of her chapel or any time at all. Bernadette simply said she would ask the Lady all that Peyramale had told her to ask. He told her to go home and to stop her deception. He also told off her aunts for letting this silly little girl bother him in the first place. He shooed them away but Bernadette returned a few minuets later to ask that people should come in procession - she had forgotten this part because Peyramale had been so outraged by the chapel she hadn't even got to the second part of the request. Angered even more by this the priest told her once more to go home and stop her deception - he slammed his window shut. Bernadette went home but there was no deception to put an end to and her messages from the Lady would certainly not end there. Little did she know that the man who had turned her away on this day would soon become her ardent defender. The power of Aquiro.

The photo above is the chapel as seen from the grotto at night.

Monday, 1 March 2010

Anniversary of the 12th apparition

The crowds were now at about 1500 and on this day, for the first time, a priest was among them. During the night something strange had happened and there was an atmosphere of excitement - though Bernadette seemed only aware, as usual, of the Lady she ran to the grotto to meet. She conversed with the Lady and continued her acts of penance.

A pregnant housewife Catherine Latapie had gone to the spring Bernadette had dug days before with the idea that bathing her arm, which had a paralysis of the ulnar nerve and caused her a great deal of pain, might soothe the agony. Her arm was healed and from that time forward caused her no pain. She also went into labour immediately and had to leave the grotto after which her baby was safely delivered. Dr Dozous, the local and esteemed M.D. was interested in this event and began recording the events at the spring which had medical implications. This is often recorded as the first miracle.

Anniersar of the 11th apparition

11th Apparition

Sunday 28th. February

Bernadette continued to carry out her acts of penance with the graciousness and humility that so struck the crowd of now over one thousand people. This would involve Bernadette being absorbed in prayer, kissing the ground, drinking from the overflowing spring and moving on her knees as a sign of penance. Some still did not know what to make of her but the increasing popularity and notoriety of the grotto was giving the authorities a headache. Lourdes was anxious not be seen as a backwards mountain outpost and for this reason Bernadette was taken to the house of Judge Ribes following this vision. Bernadette was threatened with prison and interrogated (again). She remained firm saying she had made a promise to Aquiro and she could not break it. She would return to the grotto.

Anniversary of the 10th apparition

Saturday 27th. February:

Eight hundred people crowded round the grotto where, two days before, Bernadette had dug a muddy puddle. The puddle was now a flowing spring - almost reaching the banks of the Gav. People watched as Bernadette carried out her acts of penance; drinking the water and eating the weeds. People waited for another message from the Lady. She remained silent. Watching. Praying. Those who had laughed and jeered at the previous apparition were also silent. Perhaps no longer so sure what to think about the little girl from Lourdes who seemed to have such dignity and grace in all she did- even when these actions might invoke judgement and involve humiliation.


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