Father James Martin graciously permits Patheos to excerpt a chapter of his wonderful book My Life With the Saints so that we can get to know St. Bernadette Soubirous, the unschooled French visionary who made the acquaintance of the Immaculate Conception: “In the Grotto of Massabieille”
On a Friday evening during my first year as a Jesuit novice I wandered into the TV room to see what video was being served up. Television watching was a popular pastime for novices still on a $35.00 monthly stipend. In typical Jesuit style, our TV room consisted of fifteen individual recliners lined up in front of a large television, an admittedly strange setup that once prompted my brother-in-law to ask if we took a vow against sofas, too. “What’s on?” I said.
“The Song of Bernadette,” said one, glancing up from the TV.
“What’s it about?” I asked. Everyone else looked up from their chairs, apparently aghast.
“You’re kidding, right?” said another novice. “Please tell me you’re kidding.”
It’s a wonderful read.
UPDATE: And now, Adele! A Wisconsin Apparition is Declared “Worthy of Belief”
“I declare with moral certainty and in accord with the norms of the Church that the events, apparitions and locutions given to Adele Brise in October of 1859 do exhibit the substance of supernatural character, and I do hereby approve these apparitions as worthy of belief (although not obligatory) by the Christian faithful.”
Today’s declaration makes Our Lady of Good Help at Champion the first and only site in the United States of an approved apparition of the Blessed Virgin Mary.