Cream dedicated to St Bernadette
The Cream dedicated to St Bernadette is in honor of the French saint patron for the sick
St. Bernadette was born in Lourdes, France on January 7, 1844. Her parents were very poor and she was the first of nine children. Unfortunately, she lived her life in poor health.
On Thursday, February 11, 1858, a very beautiful lady appeared to her above a rose bush in a grotto.
The woman wore blue and white and smiled at Bernadette. She then made the sign of the cross with a rosary of ivory and gold. Bernadette fell to her knees, took out her own rosary and began to pray. Bernadette later described the woman as a small young lady. Though her sister and friend claimed they were unable to see her, Bernadette knew what she saw was real.
On February 18, Bernadette said “the vision” asked her to return to the grotto each day for a fortnight. With each visit, Bernadette saw the Virgin Mary and the period of daily visions became known as “la Quinzaine sacrée,” meaning “holy fortnight.”
On February 25, Bernadette claimed to have had a life-changing vision. The vision had told her “to drink of the water of the spring, to wash in it and to eat the herb that grew there” as an act of penance. The next day, the grotto’s muddy waters had been cleared and fresh clear water flowed.
On March 2, at the thirteenth of the apparitions, Bernadette told her family the lady sad “a chapel should be built and a procession formed.”
During her sixteenth vision, which Bernadette claims to have experienced for over an hour, was on March 25. Bernadette claimed she had asked the woman her name, but her question was only met with a smile. Bernadette asked again, three more times, and finally the woman said, “I am the Immaculate Conception.”
Church authorities and the French government rigorously interviewed the girl, and by 1862 they confirmed she spoke truth. Since Bernadette first caused the spring to produce clean water. 69 cures have been verified by the Lourdes Medical Bureau, and after what the Church claimed were “extremely rigorous scientific and medical examinations,” no one was able to explain what caused the cures. Bernadette believed it was faith and prayer that was responsible for curing the sick.
Bernadette asked the local priest to build a chapel at the site of her visions and the Sanctuary of Our Lady of Lourdes is now one of the major Catholic pilgrimage sites in the world. Many other chapels and churches has been built around it, including the Basilica of St. Pius X, which can accommodate 25,000 people and was dedicated by the future Pope John XXIII when he was the Papal Nuncio to France.
Bernadette enters convent
Bernadette decided she did not like the attention she was getting and went to the hospice school run by the Sisters of Charity of Nevers, where she was taught to read and write. Though she considered joining the Carmelites, her health was too fragile.
On July 29, 1866, Bernadette took the religious habit of a postulant and joined the Sisters of Charity at their motherhouse at Nevers. Bernadette spent the rest of her life there working as an infirmary assistant, and later a sacristan. People admired her humility and spirit of sacrifice. 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.”
Unfortunately, she was diagnosed with tuberculosis of the bone in her right knee and was unable to take part in convent life. She died in the Sainte Croix Infirmary of the Convent of Saint-Gildard at the age of 35 on April 16, 1879, while praying the holy rosary.