2003, color, 54 minutes
Purchase: $310 Classroom Rental: $125
This video examines the most famous of Marian shrines, in France, which is visited by more than five million pilgrims each year. It chronicles the history of the site where, in 1858, Bernadette Soubirous, while drawing spring water from the rock of Massabielle, saw an apparition of the Virgin Mary, who instructed her to drink and wash from the spring. Many others soon followed her, especially the sick and incurably ill, many of whom were instantly and permanently cured of their afflictions.
To those of unshakable religious faith, the word ‘miracle' would certainly characterize such cures. The Catholic Church, however, which administers the Sanctuary of Lourdes, has set rigorous standards for proof. In 1883, university physicians founded the Bureau of Medical Verification so that these alleged cures could be subjected to scientific scrutiny and medical oversight. Today, the Bureau is an international organization comprising over 2,000 physicians of every medical specialty, who oversee the investigation of any Lourdes cure which seems to contravene natural laws.
The video reviews four such cures, using clinical reports, radiographs, pathology slides and other laboratory data provided by the Medical Bureau. Lourdes also features commentary by the Rector of Lourdes, the President of the Medical Bureau, and the Bishop of Lourdes, as well as interviews with the incurably ill who visit Lourdes in search of a cure, and the volunteers who care for them, who discuss prayer, spirituality and healing.
Subjects & Collections
Festivals & AwardsSpirit of the Festival Award, International Family Film Festival
Wilbur Award, Religion Communicators Council
Best Documentary, Valley International Film Festival