February 11th, 2021
Blessed Feast of Our Lady of Lourdes!
Today we celebrate the 29th World Day of the Sick and Feast Day of Our Lady of Lourdes. This could be the most significant World Day of the Sick amidst the world-wide pandemic. Let’s join together to pray for those suffering from illness and those that care for them.
There is much we could say this month, as we remember the apparitions at Lourdes, beginning this same day. But perhaps the simplest expression is to look to St. Bernadette as our example in all we do, every action.
During the 2nd Apparition, Bernadette brought holy water, a sacramental. She said to the beautiful lady, “If you are of God come closer, if not depart.” Our Lady smiled, opened her arms toward Bernadette, and leaned in closer.
Isn’t that what we all want, to draw closer to Our Lady, to her Son, to that which is pure, holy and true? And to bring those we love with us? We unite our prayer and penance for the conversion of others and in doing so we walk this pilgrimage together.
After the Catholic Church approved the apparitions as valid and the miracles from God and Lourdes a holy place worthy of pilgrimage, St. Bernadette left Lourdes to enter religious life, never to return to the Grotto. When asked if she missed the Grotto, she replied:
“I go to the Grotto, in my heart, every day and make my pilgrimage there!”
Following the example of St. Bernadette, we can do the same. This year, so many of us are unable to make the journey to France, or even to attend Mass in person, due to the ongoing pandemic. However, we can close our eyes, imagine ourselves in the Grotto under the gaze of our Heavenly Mother, and in the silence of our hearts, we can pray from wherever we are with whomever we desire to bring with us!
We invite you to join us this week and for all of 2021:
- Lourdes Virtual Pilgrimage ExperienceTM at 10:30 AM Eastern on EWTN
View on your local cable television EWTN Global Catholic Network channel or stream on www.ewtn.com/tv/watch-live
Encore Saturday, February 13 at 5:00 PM Eastern
- Relevant Radio – Our foundress Marlene Watkins will be on the Drew Mariani show February 11th at 3:00 pm ET!
Listen live online at https://relevantradio.com/wp-content/media/player.html
- Membership Mass – Stream Live at 3:20 PM Eastern (2:20 PM CT)
Prayed by Fr. Sean Grismer at St. Bridget’s Catholic Church in Loves Park, Illinois.
- Monthly Family Rosary This Saturday, February 13 at 12:00 PM Eastern
Pre-registration is required. Sign up today!
Instructions to join and reminders will be emailed to you!
November 11th, 2020
We Are Not Alone
- Read the latest news in our 2020 Lourdes Letter.
- Print our spiritual inserts on 10 Lourdes Lessons and Treasures of the Church.
- Check out recent updates to our website and YouTube Channel.
- Watch our newest video about Online Lourdes Virtual Pilgrimage Experience and the grace of Plenary Indulgence below.
September 1st, 2020
Please watch this special message from our Executive Director, Erika Vincent.
July 16th, 2020
Today is a special and blessed day for all members of Lourdes Volunteers. Not only is today the Feast day of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, but also the 18th Anniversary of the founding of Lourdes Volunteers, and the Anniversary of the 18th apparition at Lourdes.
Today also begins a new opportunity of a Plenary Indulgence granted from the Holy Father to all faithful who make a pilgrimage to Lourdes or experience Lourdes in a Virtual Pilgrimage with us between July 16, 2020 and July 15, 2027.
Responding to our plea at the onset of the world-wide pandemic, the Holy Father extraordinarily extended this Plenary Indulgence to include those that experience a Virtual Pilgrimage with us via broadcast, live-stream or recorded television or radio programs. Click here to read more.
We invite you to come and share in our joy!
We are excited our extended Lourdes Volunteers Family will be united altogether, in prayer, “in the Grotto of our Hearts.”
First Ever Membership Meeting – LIVE Tonight at 7:30 PM ET
Registration is required. Click to register and an email with instructions to join will be sent to you.
ONLINE Lourdes Virtual Pilgrimage ExperienceTM – Saturday, July 18 at 11:00 AM ET
Click here for more information and to participate. The pilgrimage will broadcast directly from our website beginning at 11:00 AM ET this weekend.
After leaving Lourdes forever for religious life in Nevers,
when Bernadette was asked if she missed the Grotto, she said:
“I go to my beloved Grotto in my heart every day and make my pilgrimage there.”
June 14, 2020 Association Update
Today we celebrate the Feast of Corpus Christi, also known as the Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ, and the anniversary of the beatification of St. Bernadette in 1945.
We believe that it is not a coincidence, but truly a “God-incidence” that these special days fall on the same day this year. It was Bernadette’s desire to make her first Holy Communion that drew her back to Lourdes from Bartres just before the first apparitions took place. Her great desire was fulfilled and she made her first Holy Communion before the last apparition with Our Lady of Lourdes. Even though Bernadette was further away from the grotto niche this time, she said Our Lady looked closer and even more beautiful.
The Eucharist—communion with Christ—transforms us and our vision.
The Eucharist is the heart of Lourdes. As the Catechism states, “The Eucharist is the source and summit of the Christian life.” With the closing of our churches, we have longed for the Eucharist, just like Bernadette.
“Eucharist” also means “thanksgiving” and in our Lourdes Volunteers Family, we have much to be thankful for. We want to thank you for all your continued support during these past months and share with you these important updates:
- Sadly, due to travel restrictions, we have cancelled all pilgrimages this pilgrimage season through October. We will resume travel as soon as it is safe.
- Even though we cannot make the journey to Lourdes, it brings us great joy to see the Sanctuary at Lourdes begin to welcome pilgrims again. The Sanctuary at Lourdes is open, however with many limitations and restrictions. The Hospitalite Notre Dame de Lourdes is encouraging members that are not restricted from travelling to Lourdes, to come and assist the pilgrims at the shrine. This service will be very different from past service.
- As churches reopen here in the United States, we will coordinate with parishes to resume our Lourdes Virtual Pilgrimages Experiences across America. In the meantime, we are planning for a live broadcast “Virtual Pilgrimage” on July 18th. More information coming soon!
- Our office, located in Central New York, is open and available to provide Lourdes Water on request and receive your prayer petitions.
- We are preparing for our first ever Member Meeting on July 16th to celebrate the anniversary of our founding on this day in 2002 and the Plenary Indulgence granted to us from the Vatican beginning on this day! This will be a time for us to share important updates with our members, answer your questions, pray together and celebrate our blessings. Invitation coming soon!
- We have been blessed to pray the rosary the last five Saturdays with you. We will continue to prayerfully unite each month through 2020. We begin our monthly rosary next Saturday, June 20th, the Memorial of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, to pray in Thanksgiving for all that the Lord has done for us. Join us to ask for Our Lady’s intercession for continued protection and grace for Lourdes Volunteers and our members!
- Please visit our Facebook, Instagram and YouTube pages for information and spiritual content. We recently shared our video 10 Lourdes Lessons in English and Spanish and are working on more projects like this for you!
Even though we remain separated physically, we can continue to unite spiritually in the Grotto of our hearts in many ways.
May the Body and Blood of Christ bring us to everlasting life! Amen!
Our Lady of Lourdes, pray for us! St. Bernadette, pray for us!
April 22, 2020
This COVID crisis may have postponed our travel to Lourdes, but it has not changed our mission! As we continue to fight this virus we know that the world needs healing now, more than ever. We need the loving and faithful example of our Blessed Mother, Our Lady of Lourdes, and St. Bernadette, as we continue to care for and rebuild our families and our communities.
We will stay dedicated to serving the sick and suffering and sharing the Message of Lourdes in every way we can. We will continue to work hard, and pray harder, for peace, comfort and healing.
Below is updated information about our programs and services
Your physical, mental and spiritual health and safety remain most important to us. We trust in Our Lady of the Grotto to guide our thoughtful decisions into prayerful and prudent discernments for all of our members and volunteers.
New York State mandates that our office remains closed and we continue to work remotely from home until at least May 15. We are grateful for the technology that makes it possible for our office team to continue to serve you from their homes. We are continuing to receive mail and phone calls. We are available to answer your questions and to support you in any way that we can at this time. We would love to hear from each of you. Please keep in touch!
Travel to France and the Sanctuary of Lourdes
Travel to France remains restricted until at least May 11. Large gatherings in France will be limited through July 15 and the Schengen borders may be closed until September. The Pau Airport, near Lourdes, and the Paris Orly Airport are currently closed.
The Sanctuary at Lourdes remains closed. However, Mgr. Olivier Ribadeau Dumas,
Rector of the Sanctuary, sends a clear message that, “The Sanctuary lives!” The chaplains are praying continuously in the Grotto and a plan for reopening that will be announced as soon as possible. The reopening will be slow and limited. Once reopened, the Sanctuary plans to extend the normal pilgrimage season and remain open until December 8th.
We encourage each of you to participate in a spiritual pilgrimage offered now to Lourdes. The Sanctuary is broadcasting prayer in the Grotto live each day on TV Lourdes, welcoming prayer petitions and inviting you to light a candle in the Grotto and in the Rosary Basilica.
St. Bernadette made a spiritual pilgrimage every day to Lourdes from the convent in Nevers:
“Every day I go in spirit to the Grotto. I make my pilgrimage there.”
Let us follow her example in this time when travel is restricted.
Pilgrimages to Lourdes
We plan to resume organized pilgrimages as soon as travel to France is allowed and safe. We will provide more information when available. We are accepting applications now for those that would like to join a pilgrimage later this year. If you have specific questions, please contact our office directly by phone (315) 476-0026 or by email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Lourdes Virtual Pilgrimage Experience
We miss visiting your parishes and schools!
We will resume sharing Lourdes across America and beyond as soon as we can. We are currently exploring new ways to share the experience of Lourdes online and will share about opportunities as they become available.
The liquid grace continues to flow!
We are continuing to share Lourdes Water with individuals by request. Additionally, we have shipped boxes of Lourdes Water to medical professionals and priests around the country in an effort to get Lourdes Water to those suffering in this pandemic. Click here to request Lourdes Water.
We have adopted strict protocols for the bottling and handling of the Lourdes Water. We have also put in place extra measures to ensure our staff and volunteers are safely socially distanced during the bottling, packaging and shipping process.
Prayer Partnership: Family Rosary and Bernadette Brigade
There is power in prayer!
We know this and have been praying for each of you. Each week our Board of Directors prays a family rosary together and prays in a united virtual holy hour for the intentions of our members, their families, and all that need healing. We welcome your prayer petitions. Email to email@example.com.
NEW! We will be inviting our members to join our weekly Family Rosary each Saturday at 12 pm ET. More information is coming soon!
Our Bernadette Brigade of prayer warriors has almost doubled its size in the last month. Please consider joining this group of prayer warriors that prays for the specific intentions of our holy association and members. Click to enlist today!
Thank you for your continued support and prayers.
We remain always united in the Grotto of our hearts.
To extend the invitation of the Immaculate Conception as given to Bernadette in the Grotto at
Lourdes; to serve the sick and suffering at Lourdes and at home following the loving
example of St. Bernadette in simplicity, humility and obedience.
March 13, 2020
Our Lady of Lourdes Hospitality North American Volunteers is closely monitoring the Coronavirus world situation.
To ensure we remain current with the latest information and updates we receive communications and expert directives from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the U.S. Department of State and the Sanctuary at Lourdes.
Your physical, mental and spiritual health and safety are most important to us. We trust in Our Lady of the Grotto to guide our thoughtful decisions into prayerful and prudent discernments for all of our members and volunteers.
We have received many inquiries about our pilgrimages and travel. For your easier reading and reference, following are the most frequent inquiries in Question and Answer format:
Please join us in continued prayer for those affected by the virus and their families, as well as healthcare workers, organizations and governments working to provide assistance.
Our Lady of Lourdes and St. Bernadette, pray for us!
Will Our Lady of Lourdes Hospitality North American Volunteers cancel pilgrimages to Lourdes from the USA this year?
If a pilgrimage is cancelled due to the Corona Virus or insufficient registered participants to maintain a group, we will transfer your payment to another later pilgrimage or refund monies not paid or due in penalty to airlines or accommodations.
Our Lady of Lourdes Hospitality North American Volunteers will not keep any monies other than what has been paid or is due to airlines or accommodations. Travel Insurance Premiums are usually non-refundable, but exceptionally, some might be recoverable under this extraordinary situation as events unfolded world-wide.
If I choose to cancel my pilgrimage travel, what are the cancellation penalties?
Cancellation penalties are determined based on the date of travel insurance purchase, the date of cancelation, the reason for cancellation and the originally scheduled departure travel date.
We will assist each person with travel insurance claims, however the claims must be filed by the individual policy holder.
We have adjusted our cancellation penalties for June pilgrimages as follows:
Cancellations between now and April 13th:
*A cancellation penalty of $100 will be retained by the airline as a non-refundable airline contract deposit penalty. All other pilgrimage payments will be refunded.
*Refunds for travel/medical insurance policies will be reviewed on a per case basis and will depend on specific policy rules.
We hope extending this non-refundable deadline will allow those with a desire or hope to travel to Lourdes this year to make an informed decision with a more lenient deadline and less lessened financial penalty investment.
As the situation changes, we will post updates to our cancellation penalties for June pilgrimages and later departures throughout the season.
Will Lourdes Virtual Pilgrimage ExperiencesTM be available?
Currently, our 2020 schedule includes the United States, Canada, Central and South America. Please visit our website for updates to our schedule, as changes, additions or postponements may be made.