Our Lady of Lourdes and St. Bernadette Soubirous • Saint stories

Of course, Mary, Jesus’ mother, is the greatest saint. She has appeared to many people over the centuries. Each place she has appeared she has been given a different title. Our Lady of Lourdes was the title she was given after she visited Bernadette Soubirous, a fourteen-year-old girl in 1858.

Bernadette lived in a very poor house in Lourdes, France, with her parents, two brothers, and a sister. (It used to be a jail!)

One day Bernadette was out with her sister and a friend to gather wood for the fire. Bernadette, who suffered from asthma and was often sick, did not cross over the stream to gather wood on the other side with her sister and friend. While they were gone, Bernadette heard a noise over near a cave-like area, and she went to investigate. There, Bernadette saw a lovely lady dressed in white who had a blue sash around her waist and a rose on each foot. She was beautiful!

Bernadette prayed the rosary with this lady before she disappeared. The lady asked her to come back again. The lady appeared to Bernadette a total of eighteen times. Bernadette was teased and laughed at; many believed that she was either imagining the appearances of Our Lady or making it up.

When a spring miraculously appeared after one of the visions, many who doubted her began to believe. Those who bathed in the spring were often cured of serious sickness or disability. Eventually, the lady identified herself: “I am the Immaculate Conception,” she told Bernadette. It was then that people realized for sure that it was Mary, the mother of God, appearing to Bernadette.

Our Lady of Lourdes, pray for us!

Activity: The Song of Bernadette

If you are able to check out from your library the original black and white movie, “The Song of Bernadette,” you are in for a VERY special treat. This movie is FABULOUS. Make sure you get the original movie starring Jennifer Jones. It won four Academy Awards.