Part VIIb Slides - Catholic Biblical Apologetics

Part Seven: VIIb
Apparitions and Messages of Mary
“Blessed are those who have not seen but believed.” (John 20:29)
OUR LADY OF LOURDES, France (1858)
Four to six million pilgrims visit
the shrine each year from
around the world and it is
estimated that more than 200
million pilgrims have come to
Lourdes since 1860.
Lourdes, France (1858)
Title: Our Lady of Lourdes; The Immaculate Conception
Investigated: On January 18,1862, Bishop Laurence, the Bishop of
Tarbes, gave the solemn declaration: “We are inspired by the Commission
comprising wise, holy, learned and experienced priests who questioned
the child, studied the facts, examined everything and weighed all the
evidence. We have also called on science, and we remain convinced that
the Apparitions are supernatural and divine, and that by consequence,
what Bernadette saw was the Most Blessed Virgin.”
First Apparition: Grotto of Masabielle, Thursday, February 11, 1858, the
lady in white first appears about midday, no speaking .
Approved: Pope Pius IX authorized the local bishop to permit the
veneration of the Virgin Mary in Lourdes in 1862.
Last Apparition: July 16, 1858, Friday, 8 pm on Feast of Our Lady of
Mt. Carmel, Bernadette sees Our Lady “more beautiful than ever” from the
far bank of the Gave River.
Visionary: Bernadette Soubirous
Number of Apparitions: Eighteen
Miracles & Signs: The well of water, countless miracle healings,
incorrupt body of Bernadette.
Messages of Our Lady of Lourdes
On February 18th, she was told by the Lady to return to the Grotto over a
period of two weeks. The Lady said: I promise to make you happy not in
this world but in the next.
On February 24th, for her eight apparition, the Lady said, “Penitence,”
then, “Would you pray to God for the conversion of sinners?”
Not until the 16th apparition, on March 25th, did she say, “I am the
Immaculate Conception.” (defined 1856)
On July 16th, since the authorities had fenced off the Grotto, Bernadette
slipped away to the meadow on the far bank of the Gave for an eighteenth
and final meeting with her Lady. “Never had I seen her looking so beautifu,”,
she said.
She gave Bernadette a message for all: “Pray and do penance for the
conversion of the world.”
Saint Bernadette Soubirous
Born: January 7th, 1844
Died: 1879
The message of Lourdes: “I am the Immaculate Conception.”
Over the years, more than
7,000 pilgrims have claimed
to have been healed after
bathing in or drinking Lourdes
water. The church has
officially deemed 67 cures
France (1871)
Joseph (10) and Eugene (12) Barbadette,
Jeane-Marie Lebosse and Françoise Richer
Pontmain, France (1871)
Title: Our Lady of Pontmain; Our Lady of Prayer
First Apparition: January 17, 1871
Approved: Approved by the Bishop in February, 1872
Last Apparition: January 17, 1871
Visionaries: Joseph (10) and Eugene (12) Barbadette, Jeane-Marie
Lebosse and Françoise Richer
Number of Apparitions: One
Miracles & Signs: At 5:30 on the night of the apparition, the Prussian
army halted its advance through France when the Prussian commander,
General Schmidt, saw the Lady in the sky. A peace treaty between France
and Prussia was signed eleven days later. And all the soldiers from
Pontmain returned home, unharmed.
Our Lady's apparition at Pontmain and the ensuing reaction of the people,
remain a constant reminder of the power of prayer, specifically in
preserving us from disaster and war. This message seems as imperative
now, in the 21st Century, as it did 135 years ago.
Summary: Joseph Barbadette became a priest, a member of the
Congregation of the Oblates of Mary Immaculate, while his brother Eùgene
became a secular priest. He was assisted by Françoise Richer, one of
the girls who had seen Mary, as his housekeeper, with the other,
Jeanne-Marie Lebossé, becoming a nun.
A large basilica was built at
Pontmain and consecrated in
In 1871, as the Franco-Prussian War raged on and thousands of French
people were losing their lives, a 12-year-old named Eugene Barbedette saw
the image of a lady in the sky wearing a black veil, blue robe decorated with
golden stars and a crown of gold. Eugene's brother, Joseph, saw the image
next and then 2 more children. Adults who came to check on the commotion
could see nothing. When the parish priest arrived, the children reported that
a red cross began to appear on the Virgin's dress. The priest led the rosary
and when they finished, the Lady unrolled a large white banner.
Giving a message of prayer and hope, the scroll said,
“Pray, my children, God will answer you in a short while. My Son will let
himself be moved.”
The people of Pontmain rejoiced; but suddenly a large blood-red crucifix
appeared in front of the Virgin with the words “Jesus Christ” written above it.
The Lady became sad. After awhile the blood-red crucifix disappeared and
the Virgin stretched out her arms to the children and smiled. Although Only
4 children were blessed to see her, the town was overflowing with joy.
The appearance of the Blessed Virgin Mary was a sign of peace to Pontmain
and France. The following day the villagers learned that foreign troops had
retreated believing that “A Madonna is guarding the country and forbidding
us to advance”. The Barbedette brothers later became priests. Our Lady of
Prayer is now honored throughout the world.
Message of Our Lady of Pontmain
The image of the Virgin began to grow and, as Marian devotions were
recited, messages began to appear in the sky, and a scroll unrolled beneath
her feet. It read, “But pray, my children. God will soon answer you. My son
allows himself to be moved.”
The woman smiled the entire time; then a large red crucifix appeared
before her. A white veil began to rise and the crucifix vanished. The
apparition then disappeared.
Ireland (1879)
Knock, Ireland (1879 )
Title: Our Lady of Knock; Our Lady of Silence
Investigated: In 1879, Archbishop of Tuam, Dr. John MacHale,
appointed an investigative commission to study the phenomenon. No
findings were published.
First Apparition: Thursday, August 21, 1879
Approved: In 1936, Archbishop of Tuam, Dr. Gilmartin, institutes a new
investigative commission which returned with a positive verdict.
September 30, 1979, Pope John Paul II visited the shrine for the 100th
anniversary of the apparitions. Over 450,000 people came to Knock on
that day.
Last Apparition: August 21, 1879.
Visionaries: Mary McLoughlin (45) and Mary Beirne (29); also there
were 15 official eye- witnesses (three men, six women, two teenage
boys and a girl, and two children) to the heavenly display.
Number of Apparitions: The single vision lasted about two hours.
Miracles & Signs: Over three hundred miraculous cures have been
reported there, including the cure of two blind men shortly after the
Summary: The composition and pose of the statues indicate a greater
purpose and looking at the apparition as a whole it would appear that the
purpose of this apparition is to put before us the four positive and unchanging
essentials for living a Christian life: (1) St. Joseph, the personification of
humility, with his head bowed and his hands joined facing the other figures
representing humility or faith and trust in God, (2) Our Lady, looking towards
heaven with her hands raised in a gesture of supplication representing
prayer, (3) St John, described as making a point from the book in his left
hand with his right hand raised with the index and middle finger extended
representing Scripture and the law, (4) the lamb on the altar, obviously
representing the lamb of God or the sacrifice of the Mass.
Portugal (1917)
Lucia Santos (9) and cousins,
Jacinta (8) and Francisco (7) Marto,
Fatima, Portugal (1917)
Title: Our Lady of Fatima; Our Lady of the Rosary
Investigated: 1919
First Apparition: May 13, 1917
Approved: October 13, 1930
Last Apparition: October 13, 1917
Visionaries: Lucia dos Santos (9), Jacinta Marto (8), Francisco Marto (7)
Number of Apparitions: 6
Miracles & Signs: Dancing Sun, Healings, Conversion of Russia,
Incorruptible body of Jacinta.
Summary: While tending sheep, Lucia de Santos and her two cousins,
Francisco and Jacinta Marto, reported six apparitions of Mary, who
identified herself as “Our Lady of the Rosary.” Mary urged prayer of the
rosary, penance for the conversion of sinners and consecration of
Russia to her Immaculate Heart.
The Three Secrets
On July 13, the Virgin is said to have revealed the Three Secrets of Fatima
to the children. The secrets consist of prophecies about the future and have
been the focus of much interest ever since. The secrets were not written
down until 1941, when Lucia was asked to compose memoirs about Fatima
and her cousins so their canonization proceedings could begin.
The first secret described a horrific vision of Hell.
The second secret foretold the end of World War I and the beginning of
World War II and called for the “Consecration of Russia to the Immaculate
Heart of Mary.” Many believe Pope John Paul II fulfilled this request in 1984
by giving a blessing over the world, including Russia, shortly before the
collapse of the Soviet Union. There is some confusion as to whether Sister
Lúcia believed this fulfilled the request of Mary.
The Vatican kept the third secret under wraps until Easter 2000--despite
Lucia's declaration that it could be released to the public after 1960. The
officially released text of the third secret was unspecific in nature, leaving
it open to various interpretations. The secret speaks of a pope being killed
by soldiers at the foot of a cross on top of a mountain, along with many
other bishops and priests.
The Church's interpretation is that this predicts the May 13, 1981
assassination attempt on Pope John Paul II by Turkish gunman Mehmet
Ali Ağca in Saint Peter's Square. John Paul himself credited Our Lady of
Fatima with saving his life, saying he saw her intervening to deflect the
gunman's arm and he maintained consciousness on the ride to the hospital
by keeping his mind focused on her.
End of
Mary the Series, Her Apparitions, Part VIIb
Go to
Mary the Series, Her Apparitions, Part VIIc
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