Saint Bernadette

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Bernadette, St (1844–79). Bernadette Soubirous was born into a humble family at Lourdes, where, at the Massabielle Rock, she received eighteen apparitions of the Virgin Mary between 11 Feb. and 16 July 1858. She was beatified in 1925 and canonized in 1933. The importance of Lourdes as a place of pilgrimage, and its association with healing, has made her among the most popular modern saints.

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Saint Bernadette (bûrnədĕt´), 1844–79, French peasant girl who reported seeing the Virgin Mary in apparitions at a grotto near Lourdes, her home, in 1858. She was born Marie Bernarde Soubirous. The authorities, skeptical of her visions, subjected her to severe examinations and abuse. After years of unpleasantness at the hands of the curious, the skeptical, and the powerful, she was allowed to enter the convent of Notre-Dame de Nevers. There Bernadette, her health steadily worsening, spent her last days. She was canonized in 1933. Feast: Apr. 16.

See biographies by L. Cristiani (1965) and A. Stafford (1967).

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Bernadette, St (1844–79), French peasant girl, born Marie Bernarde Soubirous. Her visions of the Virgin Mary in Lourdes in 1858 led to the town's establishment as a centre of pilgrimage. Bernadette later became a nun and she was canonized in 1933. Her feast day is 18 February.