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Saint Bernadette Marie Bernarde also called Bernadette Soubirous was born in Lourdes France on January 7 1884 She grew up in poverty Her father was a miller She was the oldest of six children As a child she worked as a shepard in the country away from her family It was good for Bernadette because the air was fresh and the food was plentiful At the age of 14 she returned to her parents She made her first Communion in 1858 Later that year on February 11 1858 the Blessed Mother Mary appeared to Bernadette Bernadette was out looking for firewood with her sister and a friend While they were looking Mary appeared to Bernadette above a rosebush in a grotto Bernadette describe Mary as a 16 or 17 year old girl who was wearing a white gown She also said Mary had a blue ribbon around her waist and a veil upon her head Bernadette said the rosary with Mary Despite the teasings Bernadette had to put up with from her family and fears that her mother would be mad Bernadette returned to the grotto Mary appeared 17 other times to Bernadette Mary had asked Bernadette to ask the priest to have a chapel built at the grotto in honor of the BlessedMother Mary also asked Bernadette to pray for the sinners Bernadette did as she was told she asked the priest to build a chapel in honor of Mary and she prayed for sinners At first not many people believed Bernadette They thought she was just making these visions up and that she never saw Mary Bernadette soon proved to them that she really did have visions of the Blessed mother She proved this by digging in the dirt at the grotto She dug in the grotto and a spring appeared People were amazed and began to believe Bernadette Many people bathed in this spring because it is said that the
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