‘Grace in Suffering’
Our Lady of Lourdes
…and listen to the cry of supplication which I, your servant, utter before you this day.
– 1 Kings 8:28
While I know that this is Solomon’s prayer, I can easily imagine St. Bernadette voicing these same words. Bernadette Soubirous, born in Lourdes, France, in 1844, suffered nearly nonstop during her brief life. Yet she did so with an eye toward heaven, saying that it was, “my true home.” Growing up as the eldest of nine children, she was sent to live with relatives because her parents were destitute.
She was nearly always ill, suffering from terrible asthma since she was a toddler. At the age of 14, the Blessed Mother appeared to Bernadette several times over the course of two weeks. Bernadette was severely punished when she told her relatives about the “Lady,” since they did not believe her. She was also ruthlessly ridiculed by others for the same reason.
Bernadette was, truly, God’s “servant.” May she serve as a shining example for us, that we may endure our trials with such courage and grace.
Our Lady of Lourdes, pray for us.
– Terence Hegarty