Friday, 18 June 2010

A child's view of Lourdes

Mac at Mulier Fortis has some posts on the recent Pilgrimage to Lourdes undertaken by the parishes of Our Lady of the Rosary and St Mary's, Chislehurst. She also has a large collection of photos at her Flickr photostream. (All the photos in this post are from there.) Above you can see a young pilgrim from my parish carrying the flag which I had made for our Lourdes Pilgrimages. We are at the start of the torchlight procession, waiting for it to begin and others to find us. Below is a photo from later in the procession.

Fr Briggs has sent me something written by one of his young parishioners:
Lourdes is a place I'll never forget. It gave me a new love of the Rosary and I had never learnt so much about Bernadette. I found it better than I had expected: all the churches were beautiful, and each was unique. Some had the Rosary and some had the saints. The Stations of the Cross I admired the most. I loved how they were bigger than life-size, and they looked amazing.

In those five days I learnt so much about St Bernadette and Our Lady, and how important the Rosary is, especially today. I'm glad that the weather was good: every day we were out for at least half a day and I enjoyed every bit. I wish I could go every year, that's how much I liked it. The grotto was amazing but the rock was smooth from people touching it! In the spot where Our Lady appeared there is a beautiful statue of her. Every night to finish the day there was a candlelight procession of Our Lady.

We would sing Ave Maria and say the Hail Mary, one language after another in prayer and in song. This went on for an hour and by then it was ten o'clock and it was time for me to go to sleep. I hope other young people from our parish will come to Lourdes, I know it will help them to love Our Lady and the Rosary.

(Jacinta, 9)
Thanks to Fr Bernard McNally who also joined us, we were able to celebrate High Mass in the Crypt of the Parish Church on the Wednesday and again on the Thursday. Since it was the feast of Corpus Christi, we had a procession in the Church followed by Benediction.

One of our Low Masses was in the chapel of St Gabriel which is easily rearranged. The sacristans don't mind, as long as you put everything back again.

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