Saint Bernadette was born in Lourdes, France on January 7, 1844. She was the oldest of nine. When she was fourteen years old, Bernadette, her younger sister, and a friend were sent to gather firewood, a beautiful young lady appeared to Bernadette in the grotto Massabielle. The woman wore blue and white and smiled at Bernadette before making the sign of the cross with a rosary of ivory and gold.
Bernadette knelt immediately and began praying the rosary. Her sister and friend could not see the "uo petito damizelo" (small young lady), but Bernadette knew she was real. On February 25, Bernadette claimed to have had a life-changing vision. The vision had told her "to drink of the water of the spring, to wash in it and to eat the herb that grew there" as an act of penance. The next day, the grotto's muddy waters had been cleared and fresh clear water flowed.
During the thirteenth apparition, Bernadette told her family the lady said "a chapel should be built and a procession formed."
Bernadette saw the same woman many times and during her sixteenth vision she asked the woman's name. She replied, "I am the Immaculate Conception."
Bernadette asked the local priest to build a chapel at the site of her visions and the Sanctuary of Our Lady of Lourdes is now one of the major Catholic pilgrimage sites in the world. People come from all over the world to seek healing at the spring. Saint Bernadette believed it was faith and prayer that was responsible for curing the sick.
Saint Bernadette is the patron saint of of illness, people ridiculed for their piety, poverty, shepherds, shepherdesses, and Lourdes, France.
Her feast day is April 16.
Read more about Saint Bernadette HERE
St. Luke Catholic Church - Plain, WI
1240 Nachreiner Avenue
Plain, WI 53577
Weekend Mass Schedule
Saturday Vigil: 4:00pm (St. Luke), 5:30pm (St. John)
Sunday: 8:30am (St. John), 10:00am (St. Luke)