Free Republic
Browse · Search
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Catholic Church officials call for more clergy to work at Marian shrine in Lourdes
Catholic Online ^ | July 12, 2007 | Jonathan Luxmoore

Posted on 07/14/2007 5:45:28 AM PDT by NYer

WARSAW, Poland (CNS) – Church officials have called for more clergy to work at France's Shrine of Our Lady of Lourdes, after a sharp rise in visitors wanting to make confessions.

"Several priests have already asked to come, but we need more for the coming jubilee year," said Father Yvon Peschet, who is in charge of the shrine's Reconciliation Chapel. "It's especially with French-speaking clergy that we really need reinforcements now. But there's a shortage in the dioceses now, and it isn't easy for them to take time off for pastoral work down here."

Father Peschet said July 12 that the 30 priests permanently on hand at 40 confessionals in Lourdes were having to cope with 400,000 requested confessions each year. He said he expected the demand to increase in 2008, the 150th anniversary of Marian apparitions at Lourdes, which already attracts 6 million visitors annually.

"The Francophone confessionals are literally under siege," said the priest. "We need ... men of prayer, at ease with their vocation, happy in their priesthood and faithful to the Catholic Church's magisterium. Our team will then consider them as auxiliary confessors for a period of 15-30 days."

Lourdes has been a place of pilgrimage since 1858, when St. Bernadette Soubirous, 14, experienced the first of 18 visions of Mary while gathering firewood.

Although approximately 7,000 miracles have been claimed at the shrine, which is famed as a place of healing, 68 cures have been confirmed as scientifically inexplicable by the International Medical Committee of Lourdes, established by the church in 1947.

Pope Benedict XVI has been invited to visit the shrine for the anniversary celebrations in 2008.

In a statement on the diocesan Web site, Bishop Jacques Perrier of Tarbes and Lourdes circulated a special prayer for the shrine's jubilee and also urged more priests to help.

"I ask priests of all ages to come and render this service to the innumerable people who are coming to Lourdes outside organized pilgrimages and asking to be listened to," said Bishop Perrier. "I appeal particularly for this year, which is under the sign of reconciliation, and for 2008, which will undoubtedly see increased pilgrims. Don't hesitate to come."

TOPICS: Catholic; Current Events; Prayer
KEYWORDS: lourdes; priests; shrine

1 posted on 07/14/2007 5:45:31 AM PDT by NYer
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: Lady In Blue; Salvation; narses; SMEDLEYBUTLER; redhead; Notwithstanding; nickcarraway; Romulus; ...


2 posted on 07/14/2007 5:46:30 AM PDT by NYer ("Where the bishop is present, there is the Catholic Church" - Ignatius of Antioch)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: NYer

Sounds like a nice vacation idea. Tour Lourdes spend a few days hearing confessions. Say a mass or two. I’d go, but dang, I am not a priest.

3 posted on 07/14/2007 9:26:29 AM PDT by tioga (I'll take Duncan Hunter or Fred Thompson for President. Pick one.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: NYer

BTTT! Thanks for the thread.

4 posted on 07/14/2007 9:41:06 AM PDT by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: tioga

lol, hmmm, sounds like maybe you have a calling!?

5 posted on 07/14/2007 1:25:32 PM PDT by baa39 (Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us. Immaculate Heart of Mary, pray for us.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: baa39

nah, women priests are a no-no

6 posted on 07/14/2007 2:08:17 PM PDT by tioga (I'll take Duncan Hunter or Fred Thompson for President. Pick one.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794 is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson