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World Youth Day - Day 3 Lourdes Pilgrimage

10 August 2011

We started out at 6.45 am in order to beat the rush to the miraculous Baths of Lourdes. The queue still took about 2 hours of waiting in what was pretty cold weather. All but two boys went in for a bath in the waters of the spring. A great experience handled in a very sensitive manner. After this we had a tour of the Lourdes Churches. Truly amazing was the Basilica of St Piux X, an enormous underground Church. The Church that took my eye was the one built on the rock. It towered. However we were shown this massive Church - it would fit 2 footy ovals in it - 25,000 people seated- absolutely huge. It has no beams except those on the edges so you can see perfectly from all positions.

Next on the agenda was free time but we used it to tape the Mazenod boys praying a rosary decade with the grotto in the background. We had people joining in as they passed and people came up and said how pleased they were to see Catholic youth reciting the rosary.

Lunch was whatever the boys could buy: pizza mainly. We watched a film, followed by young American Oblates showing us around the sites connected to St Bernadette. We were well and truely walked off our feet. Free time was much appreciated. Dinner was delightful as it was accompanied by an amazing speaker who told of her miraculous cure through Lourdes. She was a Melbourne lady whose leg was so diseased it was thought it might get amputated. It was instantly cured of one of her diseases and within days of other diseases. Her talk was a fitting ending. The final night activity was a massive procession of the Statue of Our Lady. Candleight and prayer. At 10.30 pm it was time to head for the hotel.

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