Bernadette of Lourdes

Bernadette of Lourdes

Pilgrimage into the heart of Jesus

Adam Simon

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In this year of the 160th anniversary of the Lourdes Apparitions, enter into Adam Simon’s beautiful rendering of the story of Bernadette of Lourdes, accompanying a young girl who overcomes all obstacles, and persuades people to believe her remarkable story. The story is made vivid through stunning illustrations by Josephine Simon, who makes the dramatic early days of Lourdes come to life. You feel that you are present with Bernadette and witnessing each of the eighteen apparitions of the “Beautiful Lady”. This moving telling of the story of Lourdes takes the reader on a pilgrimage with Bernadette into the heart of Jesus: after all, this is the destination to which the Lady in the Grotto – Mary, as she finally reveals herself to be – is calling us all.

From the introduction

“The author invites us to discover the way in which we can today appropriate the experience of Bernadette. The book is like an open door to those who want to make a pilgrimage, and, therefore, takes into account the three pilgrims that each one of us carries in the deepest part of our heart:

  • The first pilgrim, connected to what Pope Francis calls the gestures of popular piety: touching the rock, drinking water from the spring, lighting a candle.
  • The second pilgrim, linked to the big celebrations and traditional devotions of the Church: participating in the Eucharist, praying the rosary, doing the stations of the Cross.
  • The third and final pilgrim is the one open to the grace of the sanctuary itself and asks: “What can I do to change my life for the good of others and for myself?” This is the real sense of a pilgrimage and so the author invites us to the summit of this process: conversion.”

– Fr Horacio Brito

Rector Emeritus of the Lourdes Sanctuary

Lead Chaplain of the Hospitalité Notre Dame de Lourdes

How the book is constructed

Each chapter is dedicated to one of the apparitions and starts with the story of the day. This is kept as factual as possible, listing who was there and how long the apparition lasted, and leaving the reader to appreciate what happened from eyewitness accounts. The voice of Bernadette is captured wherever possible or relevant, and great prominence is given to the ten recorded statements of the Lady. In the story, we explore the exchanges between the young Bernadette and the Lady in the Grotto. We stay with them – opposite the Grotto, or walking with Bernadette and her companions to or from it. Some of Bernadette’s famous encounters during the period of the apparitions get only a cursory treatment: meetings with police, prosecutors, and even the parish priest are a distraction – the purpose of the book is to help us sit in the Grotto, and to make it our home.

Following the story of each apparition, and the eyewitness accounts, there is a short reflection to try to make sense of what happened. This includes a religious or spiritual interpretation of the events of the day. There is a picture to illustrate each day’s apparition. The images show different aspects of Bernadette. We have many eyewitness descriptions of her appearance, as well as photos of her. The picture incarnates the story, and helps the reader to develop an intimacy with Bernadette. At high points, the artist has also included the Lady, trying to depict this heavenly being as Bernadette described her: a young girl, the same size and age as herself.

No pilgrimage would be complete without inviting the pilgrim to make acts of faith to support their search for truth. In the ‘My Pilgrimage’ section of each chapter, the reader is asked to act through prayer or service. By the end of the book, the author hopes, the reader will have had a mini experience of pilgrimage which will feed their spiritual life and give them an appetite for more.

Because the story of Lourdes is Gospel-focused, each chapter includes a short piece of scripture to bring out the parallels between the apparition and the life and teaching of Jesus.

The book is intended to be ecumenical and accessible to people of all backgrounds: it is an open invitation to people of all traditions to get to know Bernadette, Mary and Jesus through this story. Inevitably, certain terms used are more familiar to those who practise their faith in the Catholic tradition. We have therefore included a chapter on Catholic terminology and attempt to use simple, lay language wherever possible.

Additional Information
Isbn / Product Code 9781999933609
Dimensions 20.5 x 26 cm
Printed Pages 107
Format Paperback
Year Of Publication 2018
Publisher ABCEJ Publishing
Author Adam Simon
Product Code 9781999933609
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