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St. Bernadette

Nativity of Mary Marian Prayers St. Monica St. Bernadette St. Francis St. Clare St. Dominic St. Agnes St. Sebastian Angels

St. Bernadette

b. 1844 d. 1879
Feastdays: February 15 (France), April 16
Patroness of people ridiculed for their piety, those in poverty, shepherds, sick people.

St. Bernadette was born at Lourdes, France. Her parents were poor and she spent her life in poor health. On February 11, 1858, while on an outing to gather firewood, the Blessed Virgin Mary appeared to Bernadette.  The Lady was dressed in blue and white, and appeared above a rose bush in a grotto called Massabielle. She smiled at Bernadette and made the sign of the cross with a rosary of ivory and gold. Falling on her knees, Bernadette took out her own rosary and began to pray.

Our Lady of Lourdes The Blessed Lady appeared to Bernadette seventeen more times. She told Bernadette that she should pray for sinners, do penance, and have a chapel built  on that spot in her honor. Many people did not believe Bernadette when she told them of her vision, and she suffered terribly because of this.  On one visitation, Our Lady told Bernadette to dig in the mud. As she did, a spring of water began to flow. The spring continued to grow larger and larger, and Bernadette was told to bathe in it.  Many healing miracles happened as people began to use this water, and it has been a site of pilgrimage for the sick ever since.

At an early age she became a Sister of Charity of Nevers, and was besieged by the faithful and religious. She lived in the convent for thirteen years, spending a large portion of this time ill in the infirmary. When a fellow sister accused her of being a 'lazybones', she said that her 'job' was "to be ill".  She was always very humble servant of God, not wanting 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, "The Blessed Virgin chose me only because I was the most ignorant."  

Bernadette died on 16th April 1879. The Blessed Mother had kept the promise she made to Bernadette in 1858, "I do not promise to bring you happiness in this world, but in the next".  Her body remains today incorrupt. She lies in St. Gildard Convent in Nevers, France. 

Click on her picture to read the amazing story of, "THE INCORRUPT BODY OF SAINT BERNADETTE", at Catholic Online.

Incorrupt Body of St. Bernadette

Bernadette Links


Bernadette - Presented by Catholic Online Marian Pages


Lourdes - Catholic Encyclopedia on Notre-Dame de Lourdes