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World Day of the Sick feast day on February 11 coincides with Our Lady of Lourdes from the many healings reported at the shrine.

shrine-at-lourdes-2Shrine at Lourdes in France.

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There were eighteen apparitions of the Blessed Virgin Mary to St. Bernadette Soubiroux between February and July 1858.

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A young Bernadette as a French peasant girl. (actual photo)

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There was a spring flowing near the grotto where the 9th apparition, where the Lady suggested that Bernadette take a drink. There have been many cures of ailments here, even though Bernadette said there was nothing special in the water, only that it allowed pilgrims to have faith through prayer.

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Grotto with small stream at Lourdes France.

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During the 13th apparition, Bernadette was told to build a chapel at the grotto.
Current chapel built up over the years is now a major pilgrimage destination for Catholics.

On left, actual photo of St. Bernadette at passing. On right incorruptible body and her incorruptible face.

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Pope Bendedict XVI resigned on this date due (February 11) to poor health. Here is Pope Benedicts homily at Lourdes in 2008. Below his prayer at Lourdes ending the homily:

“Because you are the smile of God, the reflection of the light of Christ, the dwelling place of the Holy Spirit,

Because you chose Bernadette in her lowliness, because you are the morning star, the gate of heaven and the first creature to experience the resurrection,

Our Lady of Lourdes, with our brothers and sisters whose hearts and bodies are in pain, we pray to you!” – Pope Benedict

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