Saturday, April 16, 2011

BXVI's Birthday and Bernadette!

Hello, Coffee Talkers!

Today is Pope Benedict XVI's 84th birthday, which also happens to fall on the Feast of St. Bernadette! Bernadette was a poor, sickly, and uneducated girl who became a messenger for Mary, who appeared to young Bernadette and revealed herself as the Immaculate Conception.

Here's a little info about this interesting saint from Catholic Online:
St. Bernadette was born at Lourdes, France. Her parents were very poor and she herself was in poor health. One Thursday, February 11, 1858, when she was sent with her younger sister and a friend to gather firewood, a very beautiful Lady appeared to her above a rose bush in a grotto called Massabielle. The lovely Lady was dressed in blue and white. She smiled at Bernadette and then made the sign of the cross with a rosary of ivory and gold. Bernadette fell on her knees, took out her own rosary and began to pray the rosary. The beautiful Lady was God's Mother, the Blessed Virgin Mary. She appeared to Bernadette seventeen other times and spoke with her. She told Bernadette that she should pray sinners, do penance and have a chapel built there in her honor. Many people did not believe Bernadette when she spoke of her vision. She had to suffer much. But one day Our Lady told Bernadette to dig in the mud. As she did, a spring of water began to flow. The next day it continued to grow larger and larger. Many miracles happened when people began to use this water. When Bernadette was older, she became a nun. She was always very humble. More than anything else, she desired not to be praised. Once a nun asked her if she had temptations of pride because she was favored by the Blessed Mother. "How can I?" she answered quickly. "The Blessed Virgin chose me only because I was the most ignorant." What humility! Her feast day is April 16th.
 Oh, and her body is incorrupt! Pretty rockin'.

We'll return to our series on what Catholics believe about Mary tomorrow, and I thought today's Feast Day was a nicely related commercial break.

So happy birthday to you, Holy Father, and Saint Bernadette, pray for us!

Peace and all good,


  1. Our family was blessed to have gone to a traveling exposition of over 100 relics last fall. The talk that the priest gave focused on St. Maria Goretti, but he did speak about St. Bernadette as well.

    The ground in which she was buried was a damp type of dirt. When they exhumed her body, the chains of her rosary had rusted away and the beads scattered in the coffin. Her clothes weren't in much better shape. Her body looked like she had just gone to sleep.

    They chose an atheist to perform the autopsy so that the Church wouldn't be accused of looking out for their own interests. When the doctor cut St. Bernadette open, those who were there smelled roses. Later the atheist doctor came into the Church.

  2. Thank you for sharing that, Denise!