Charity registration No. SC002876   Sunday April 14th. 2013 Page 1 Page 3 Page 2 Page 4 Main Menu The Blessed Sacrament. Pope Francis is encouraging us all to have greater devotion to the Blessed Sacrament, and to give Our Lord the greatest respect and love in this wonderful sacrament.  He himself has a great love for our Lord in the Eucharist, and he tell us that it is from his devotion to Christ in this sacrament  of his love  that he receives the grace and strength he needs to help him with his work as shepherd of the flock.  He invites us all to have greater devotion to the Blessed Sacrament and to try to find more time  to be  in Our Lord’s  presence.  Those who have devotion to the Blessed Sacrament will find themselves growing closer to our Lord in their love and warmth for him, and will also find a greater joy and peace in their lives and a greater desire humbly to serve Christ.  Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament We will return to having a holy hour once a month with Mass followed by private  prayer before the Blessed Sacrament.  There is no doubt that devotion to the Blessed Sacrament in a parish brings very many graces down on the whole parish.   There are so many things to pray for—an increase of vocations to the priesthood and the religious life; for those who have lapsed from their faith; peace in our own hearts, in our homes and in the world; unity of all the churches, and so much more. In Church As we bless ourselves on entering the church, let us remind ourselves with sincere faith that we are coming into  the presence of Christ, truly present in the tabernacle.  Our genuflection should be one of deep adoration, and we should try to maintain a respectful silence in his presence.  Our Lord should be the whole object of our thoughts and prayers.   We have so many things we can to share with  Him, and there is no more sympathetic or eager listener than Our Lord.  I know there is always the  temptation to read the Bulletin first, but it is a courtesy to put out Lord first in our priorities.  May our parish be known for its devotion to the  Blessed Sacrament. Feast of St.  Bernadette, April 16th The eldest of nine children, only four of whom survived childhood, Marie-Bernarde Soubirous (1844-79) was born at Lourdes, in the foothills of the Pyrenees.  After her father, a miller, lost his job in 1854, the family was exposed to the direst extremes of poverty.     Bernadette grew up uneducated, undernourished and asthmatic, obliged to work as a waitress and a farmhand.  The little girl spoke in a Basque dialect, and could scarcely read or write.  She did, however, imbibe from her parents a deep Catholic devotion.  By 1856 the Soubirous were living in an abandoned prison cell which stank of sewage.  On February 11, 1858, Bernadette, with her sister Toinette and a friend, went to gather firewood.  In a grotto beside the River Gave, at a place used as a watering hole for pigs, she saw a vision of a Lady wearing a white dress, a blue girdle and a yellow rose on each foot.  Bernadette's companions saw nothing, and she herself wondered whether her experience had been an illusion Three days later, though, she returned to the grotto, and again saw the apparition.     On February 18, her third visit, the vision spoke for the first time, asking for her presence over the next fortnight.  Next day, the Lady instructed Bernadette to tell the priests to build a chapel at the grotto.     Crowds began to gather to witness the regular phenomenon of the small girl in ecstasy.  The police, concerned, interrogated Bernadette, who related her experiences with clarity and conviction.  Local interest quickened after the Lady told Bernadette to drink from a muddy trickle in the grotto.  By the morrow the trickle had turned into an active spring.      On March 4, at the end of the prescribed fortnight, a crowd of 10,000 gathered to watch Bernadette.  In fact, she would experience three more apparitions, bringing the total to 18.  At the request of her parish priest, she insisted that the Lady should give her name.  "I am the Immaculate Conception," came the reply, in perfect Basque dialect.  Spectators saw the flames of a candle lick Bernadette's fingers for a quarter of an hour.  If she felt any pain she gave no sign of it.  "I do not promise to make you happy in this world but in the next," the apparition had told her.  In 1866 Bernadette entered a convent in Nevers where she suffered much from an unsympathetic mistress of the novices.  Her character, however, remained a rare blend of simplicity and strength until, at 35, her frail health finally gave way, and she died on April 16, 1866 An actual photo of Bernadette The Incorrupt body of St. Bernadette in a glass case at an altar in her convent at Nevers, Normandy.