Our Lady of Lourdes
On the hottest day of the year with record temperatures we had almost 2,000 Graduands and their guests gathered within the Cathedral for one of the Hope University celebrations of Conferment of Degrees. Some were hovering in the underground car park until the last minute thinking that we had air conditioning on in there but that was simply the difference between outside and in but the Cathedral itself reached a balmy 28 degrees. Our temporary electronic organ still worked fine but our organists, who were also playing for the Liverpool Graduations at the Philharmonic, returned to the Cathedral ahead of time due to the organ being inoperative, as a result of overheating or you could describe it as being ’Too hot to handle’. Thankfully our Cathedral has now returned to its normal draughty cooler self.
Many priests and people will be away this week on the Annual Diocesan Pilgrimage to Lourdes following a break of a few years due to Covid. The theme for prayer over the next few years is the part of Our Lady’s message to St Bernadette to speak to the priests and build a shrine for people to come and pray for the needs of the world and for the sick and infirm. Our pilgrims will be asked to pray specifically for the priests and the sick and infirm of our Diocese. Perhaps we could also pray part of the rosary this week and join with them in praying for these intentions.
A Prayer to Our Lady of Lourdes
The chapel is inscribed with a prayer which reads:
Ever Immaculate Virgin Mother of Mercy, Health of the sick, refuge of sinners, Comforter of the afflicted, you know our wants, our troubles, our sufferings; look with mercy on me. By appearing in the Grotto of Lourdes, you were pleased to make it a privileged sanctuary, whence you dispense your favours; and already many sufferers have obtained the cure for their infirmities, both spiritual and corporal.
I come, therefore, with complete confidence to implore your maternal intercession. Obtain, O loving Mother, the grant of my requests. Through gratitude for your favours, I will endeavor to imitate your virtues, that I may one day share your glory. Amen.
We extend our grateful thanks to the Duchy of Lancaster who have given the Cathedral a grant of £5,000 towards the cost of a set of new chairs for use in the Crypt Concert Room. The existing chairs have been well worn over the years and have rips and tears in them. The grant will enable us to smarten up this facility which is so well used by many different groups of people within the city.
Canon Anthony O’Brien