My last week in Lourdes was very nice. For my birthday, a priest friend and I went to Da Marco restaurant for pizza and the Mousse au Chocolat with pralines.
And a great Bordeaux!
After the Eucharistic Procession, I caught the last part of Couperain's Motet, "Jubilemus Exultemus," which sounds like great First Mass music!
Fr. George prays at the Rosary procession:
The grotto. It is empty and peaceful around 8pm. This is the best time to walk inside, or just sit and pray:
"I am the Immaculate Conception" is inscribed in the local Bigourdan dialect. This is language used in the conversations between Our Lady and Saint Bernadette:
A few days before I left, the new bishop of Tarbes and Lourdes invited the seminarians to dinner at his Lourdes residence. Bishop Nicolas Brouwet was installed as the new bishop in March 2012. For the past few years as Auxiliary Bishop of Nanterre in France, he participated in the yearly traditional pilgrimage to Chartres. Here he is hearing confessions one year:
He has also ordained for some of the traditional Priestly Fraternities in the Extraordinary Form:
After Vespers and a wonderful talk about the Sacrament of Confession, the Bishop walked us to his residence up the road from the Sanctuary:
After dinner, we walked back to the sanctuary for the nightly Rosary Procession. I was able to speak with him about my illness, and he offered his Rosary for me that evening. He exudes joy, and he kept talking about how much he loves being a priest: