Lourdes - Blog

Lourdes Pilgrimage 2017: Day 2

The second day of the pilgrimage began with the Cardinal explaining that today we will be entering more deeply into the life of Saint Bernadette. The first event of the day was the Sacrament of Anointing of the Sick. Contrary to common belief, the sacrament is not only for those who are seriously ailing where death is imminent, but also for someone who has been sick for long due to serious or chronic illness, accident or any other calamity and may want to be blessed. Bishop John Wilson beautifully explained this by giving an example of a young man he met on a visit during his time as a hospital chaplain. The young man had met with an accident and was reluctant at first to receive the sacrament but once the Church's teaching was explained, he agreed to receive it.

In the afternoon Mass was celebrated at Saint Bernadette’s parish church of Sacré-Coeur where she was baptised. The church was stunningly decorated with chandeliers in the shade of blue and purple. The image of Bernadette at the candle stand was nothing less than brilliant: simple, yet showing through her eyes was the piety of a saint.

The Marian torchlight procession which began at 9 in the evening was faith affirming and heart-tugging. Thousands of people with common faith in the Virgin Mother raising their candles at the sound of Ave Maria, overwhelmed most with the fervour of her presence right among us as we chanted along, ‘ Ave Maria, Gratia Plena, Dominus Tecum Benedicta Tu’. 

For photos of today's events, please click the link below https://www.flickr.com/photos/catholicwestminster/albums

In this video message, Cardinal Vincent explains what it means to enter more deeply into the life of Saint Bernadette and the mystery of loss in each our lives. 

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