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Association of the Miraculous Medal

At the entrance to the National Shrine of Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal is a painting of Our Lady of Lourdes. Mary gave the Miraculous Medal to Saint Catherine Labouré in 1830, and when Mary appeared at Lourdes twenty-eight years later, Catherine immediately saw the connection between the medal and Lourdes. She exclaimed joyfully, “You see. It is our own Mother, the Immaculate!”

There are many connections between Lourdes and the Miraculous Medal, recognized at once by Saint Catherine Labouré, and so we celebrate a novena honoring Our Lady of Lourdes at the National Shrine of the Miraculous Medal every year. You are invited to join in the novena. Send your petitions.

The Story of Lourdes

On February 11, 1858, 14 year old Bernadette Soubirous was searching for firewood at the River Gave near Lourdes in southwestern France. She heard a rustling sound coming from a hillside cave, and when she looked up, she saw a beautiful lady in a white dress with a blue sash. The lady, who was holding a rosary, made the sign of the cross, and Bernadette did the same with her own rosary. As Bernadette prayed, the lady let the beads slip through her fingers, but said nothing.

At the lady’s request, Bernadette kept returning to the cave where her visions recurred seventeen times. The lady instructed Bernadette to drink from a spring which the girl discovered by scraping dirt from a damp spot near the cave. The lady told Bernadette that believers must pray and do penance for the conversion of sinners. When asked for her name, the lady said, “I am the Immaculate Conception.”

After the spring emerged, miracles of healing occurred when the sick were washed in its waters, and people began coming to Lourdes in great numbers. Within a few years, churches and hospitals were built to accommodate pilgrims and those in need of healing. Since 1858, thousands have been cured of physical afflictions. For example, a young Italian soldier, near death from cancer that had destroyed his hip and pelvic bone, was brought to Lourdes on May 27, 1963. After being placed in the spring water, he felt better and wanted to eat. Soon he was walking around his hospital room. X-rays showed that he had grown a new hip! This miracle was reported by Reader’s Digest, April 1982, in an article, “Vittorio Micheli’s Pilgrimage to Lourdes.”

Such miracles at Lourdes have turned skeptics into believers, and believers have received untold blessings. As members of the Association of the Miraculous Medal, we have special reason to honor Our Lady of Lourdes and pray for such blessings. Bernadette was wearing a Miraculous Medal when Mary appeared to her. Mary identified herself at Lourdes as “The Immaculate Conception.”

Mary, under her titles of Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal and Our Lady of Lourdes, is always ready to help her children. Mary is ready to help you if you only ask – seek the graces that the Blessed Mother can obtain for you.

We receive many emails and letters testifying to Mary’s intercession for those who turn to her in need. Here are two letters―

Dear Father, My daughter and I have been estranged for over three years. I prayed to our Lord and our Blessed Mother to reunite us. Words cannot express the joy my heart has now that we have reconciled. I am blessed to be in my daughter’s life again. I am so thankful to our Blessed Mother for her intercession that I will never be able to shout it loud enough.
Via email

Dear Father, I have prayed to our Lady of the Miraculous Medal for my husband and I to be blessed with a child. I have been wearing the medal for three months and I am currently eight weeks pregnant with twins. I am so grateful for this miracle in my life, and I am very proud and honored to be wearing the Miraculous Medal. Our Lady and her Son have blessed my husband and I with two little angels, and we can’t wait to see them come into this world.
Mrs. M.C. ― CT

Please send me your novena petitions, and your request for Votive Lights, especially if you or someone dear to you is in need of healing. If you have received blessings through Mary’s intercession, ask us to join you in prayers of thanksgiving. Any offering you make to the Association will help us in our ministry of spreading devotion to Mary and assisting the Vincentian community in its service to the poor.

I will remember your intentions at the Shrine during the Lourdes Novena, February 11-19. Please pray for me and for all members of the Association. May God bless you for your generosity, and may our Blessed Mother keep you in her care.

Sincerely yours in our Lady,


Spiritual Director

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