St. Bernadette Parish
Appleton, WI

June 12th & June 13th

"The relics arrived late afternoon on Sunday, June 12th in time for the 4:00 p.m. mass," shared Father Joe Dorner, Pastor of St. Bernadette in Appleton, WI. " We have statues of St. Bernadette and Our Lady of Lourdes, so we placed the reliquary between them. It was beautiful to see the people come and show reverence to St. Bernadette. Bishop David Ricken, Diocese of Green Bay, celebrated mass on Sunday, and the North American Volunteers held a beautiful Lourdes Virtual Pilgrimage Experience.™"

"But the question I asked myself was 'What was her salvific purpose? What did St. Bernadette teach us?' Of course, she teaches us 'Penance, penance, penance, and she was a healer of the physical, spiritual and emotional. She was a very sensitive person herself."

"Then I looked at the two jobs she had as a nun in the convent. She was a sacristan, and she was also an infirmarian." An infirmarian is one who works in a nunnery, caring for nuns who became ill, as well as caring for other old and sick people in the nunnery.

"She was also very sick herself," continues Father Dorner. "Once when told by her Superior, when she was sick with tuberculosis, and in bed, that she was so sick, she could not work. She replied, 'I am working. I'm being ill.' Often we think that life is not valuable unless we are working. But that isn't necessarily so. She teaches penance, and, by example, how to accept courageously the crosses we all are given, each in our own way. Do we choose to lay our life down, as Jesus did for us? Do we carry our crosses bitter, angry or upset, or do we carry them with grace?"

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