Q. 1. Where did the title "Our Lady of Lourdes" originate from?
A. 1. In 1858, Our Lady (the mother of Jesus) appeared 18 times to Bernadette Soubirous, a young peasant girl. These apparitions took place in the grotto of Massabielle, near Lourdes in Southern France.
In time, Our Lady revealed herself as the Immaculate Conception and asked that a chapel be built on the site of the appearance. Our Lady of Lourdes told Bernadette to drink from a fountain in the grotto. At the time, no fountain could be seen. But in obedience, Bernadette dug at the spot of the apparition. Suddenly, a spring began to flow. From this flowing spring, an endless number of persons have experienced spiritual and physical healing. Although the water has been analyzed, no curative property could be identified by science.
Since that day, Lourdes has become the most famous modern shrine of Our Lady.
NOTE: While the Catholic Church has officially recognized the apparitions of Our Lady of Lourdes and those of Our Lady of Fatima, it has not recognized the alleged apparitions of Medjugorje. Hundreds, possibly thousands of documents have been authored by deceivers who have placed Medjugorje on an equal footing as Lourdes and Fatima, indicating that Medjugorje is the fulfillment of Fatima. Such is not the case. The Catholic Church has never approved Medjugorje, nor elevate it on an equal footing to Lourdes and Fatima.
Medjugorje cannot be compared to Lourdes and Fatima, the two later ones having proven beyond a doubt that they are from Heaven through the unexplainable signs, miraculous and physical in nature, that were witnessed by thousands of Catholics. Medjugorje has not produced one such sign so it could obtain the seal of approval of the Catholic Church.
Lourdes and Fatima have united the Catholics. Medjugorje has divided Catholics! As Catholics, we are obligated to defend Lourdes and Fatima, ensuring that no one places Medjugorje on an equal footing.