Set at the foot of the Pyrenees, Lourdes was a quiet town until a ‘beautiful lady’ appeared to a young girl, Bernadette Soubirous, in the year 1858. Over the course of 18 appearances St. Bernadette came to understand that the ‘beautiful lady’ was none other than the Blessed Virgin Mary who revealed herself to be the ‘Immaculate Conception’. At first derided and horrified the local people and church authorities denounced Bernadette as being mad, but today the message of Lourdes touches the hearts of millions around the world.
During the ninth apparition Our Lady instructed Bernadette to scrape the ground for the spring. This spring of water flows to this day and the waters of Lourdes have been known for their miraculous properties. Since the apparitions there have been in excess of 7,000 unexplained healings associated with Lourdes. Whilst they stand as a sign for the world, the true beauty of Lourdes lay in the encounter among pilgrims of the immense Love of God and of Our Blessed Lady. To visit Lourdes and witness the charity, fraternity and love amongst the pilgrims especially for those who are sick, leaves a mark upon our hearts that draws us back to this special place year after year.
The 2020 Pilgrimage
This year the Welsh National Pilgrimage to Lourdes takes place from 19th – 24th July. Pilgrims depart Cardiff Airport by chartered flight and are transferred from Lourdes Airport to the town by prearranged transport. The cost of the pilgrimage includes full board accommodation in one of the hotels in the town. Whether you are able-bodied, sick or young Lourdes holds something for you and Our Lady invites you to experience this special place.
Able bodied and young pilgrims may wish to volunteer to work with the sick pilgrims throughout the pilgrimage. Aiding the sick adds to the experience of Lourdes. For more information please contact the Pilgrimage Director, Fran Mainwaring by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
An invitation from Archbishop George Stack
Tuesday 11th February marks the Feast Day of Our Lady of Lourdes. Archbishop George Stack invites you to join him for Mass at St. David’s Cathedral, Cardiff followed by a procession, the Roary and prayers at the shrine to Our Lady of Lourdes.