LOURDES' CHAIN OF 1250 MASSES
BISHOP MAURY, Co-adjutor of 'Farber and Lourdes is soon to announce the place in the Sanctuary of Lourdes where Mass will be celebrated continuously for a full month.
The International Lourdes Committee in Rome reports that this unusual devotion will take place from August 15, the Feast of Our Lady's Assumption, to September 15. The chain of an estimated 1,250 Masses will be offered for the intentions of the Holy Father.
The period chosen for the celebration of the Masses immediately precedes the opening of the Marian and Mariological congresses.
The cycle of Masses recalls a tridutun of continuous Masses held in Lourdes in 1933 marking the Jubilee Year of the Redemption. The present. Pope, then Cardinal Pacclli was there as the Legate of Pope Pius Xl. On that occasion the idea was that of a London priest Fr. John Waterkeyn; this time it was the idea of American directors of the Enthronement of the Sacred Heart in the Home.
Any hour The Holy See has already granted permission to the Lourdes sanctuary during the centenary year to celebrate Mass at any hour of the day and night and has also given permission to the faithful to receive Holy Communion at any hour providing the present Eucharistic fast is kept.
It wje announced this week also that at least 10 Cardinals and 150 Archbishops and Bishops will attend the Mariological Congress in September. There will he pilgrimages from Africa, Japan, Pakistan, Egypt and Turkey. There will be delegates representing almost every Iron Curtain country.
As already announced, Cardinal Tisserant. Dean of the Sacred College will be the Pope's Legate a 'Were, the. highest degree of Papal Legate. This means that the Cardinal will be entitled to the honours due to a sovereign and will be accompanied from the French frontier to Lourdes by the French Minister of the Interior.
The Mariological Congress (for study) will take place from September 10 to 14, and the Marian Congress (for devotions) will take place from September 15 to 17.
A new appeal for funds for the Centenary church of St. Pius X, opened and consecrated in March by Cardinal Roncalli, has been launched by Bishop Maury.
The debt has now risen to £1,500,000 and the Bishop asks pilgrims to buy the Pilgrims' Card, to buy the official souvenirs of the centenary, to give generously to collections made during pilgrimages. Pilgrims and non pilgrims are asked to help by sending a subscription.
since the great underground church was opened there has been much more rain in Lourdes than is necessary to prove that the church was indispensable. The High Masses. the Procession of the Blessed Sacrament and the blessing of the sick have taken place every day.