Saint Bernadette Soubirous Saint Bernadette Soubirous is a two-fold story: that of the apparition of the Blessed Virgin Mary at Lourdes, France in 1858, as well as of the 14-year-old peasant girl - raised in dire poverty and unable to read - to whom Our Lady appeared. But more, it is also the story of St. Bernadette's hidden life as a seemingly ordinary nun in her convent at Nevers, where she reached such holiness that after her death, God saw fit to preserve her body incorrupt - as it remains to this day (See the inset.) Beautifully set forth in this book are St. Bernadette's childhood and life at home, her character - honest, intelligent and straightforward - her description of Our Lady, the events surrounding the 18 apparitions, the opposition of the civil authorities, and the shrine and miraculous spring at Lourdes. Also described is Bernadette's life in the convent, where she suffered martyrdom in body and in soul. The Blessed Mother told the 14-year-old Bernadette: "I do not promise to make you happy in this world, but in the next." Our Lady's promise was fulfilled on April 16, 1879, when Bernadette died at the age of only 35. In death she looked young and beautiful, despite the ravages of the illness she had suffered, and when her body was exhumed 30 years later, it still showed no trace of corruption. Drawing upon a wealth of fascinating information compiled during the lifetime of the Saint, and quoting the actual words of Bernadette, of her family members and friends, of her fellow sisters, and of the priests and bishops of Lourdes, the Abb Trochu has presented not only an authentic account, but a most inspiring one as well. His work is a masterpiece in saintly biography, the equal of which is only rarely encountered. To read this book is to witness the unfolding of the glorious story of Lourdes, with Our Lady's declaration: "I am the Immaculate Conception," followed by the countless healings at the famous grotto, Massabielle, which have continued to our very days; as well as to see St. Bernadette as a young girl at the time of the apparitions, in her hidden years of struggle and faithfulness, and in the magnificent glory of sainthood at her canonization. Without a doubt, this is the finest book ever written about Lourdes and its sainted and beloved visionary, St. Bernadette Soubirous.