Lourdes Pilgrimages 2013
"Lourdes - a Doorway for Faith"
Following the lead of the Holy Father, Pope Benedict, proclaiming a year of Faith, the Bishop of Lourdes, Mgr. Brouwet, has made "Lourdes - a Doorway for Faith" the Pastoral theme for 2013.
He invites pilgrims to visit Lourdes, to join together with other pilgrims in the Processions, Masses and Celebrations, that, through the intercession of our Blessed Lady, their pilgrimage may be the opening of a doorway, enabling them to deepen their relationship with her precious son, Jesus Christ, and strengthen their faith.
In 1858, Lourdes was just a small market town in the backwaters of rural France. The events of February 11th changed the village and have attracted hundreds of millions of pilgrims since that time. Our Lady appeared 18 times, over a period of time, to a poor sickly child called Bernadette Soubirous at the Grotto of Massabielle. On each occasion Bernadette joined Our Lady in saying the Rosary. To this day, the Rosary is an important part of the daily devotions at the shrine.
A Pilgrimage today provides a balance between prayer and leisure, devotion and enjoyment.