Living the Faith

Lourdes United!

Each year on July 16th, the date of the last apparition of Our Lady to Bernadette, the Sanctuary of Lourdes celebrates Lourdes United, a day for parishes and people who have Our Lady of Lourdes as their patroness to come together in gratitude for being included in Our Lady’s embrace and mission and to rededicate ourselves to her call. That includes us.

We are indeed united, with the work of the Sanctuary of Lourdes and with each other, the parish family of Our Lady of Lourdes, as we answer her call here in Miami. The recent visit of the relics of St. Bernadette was St. Bernadette, herself, bringing to Miami the message that Our Lady sent her to bring first to Lourdes: “Go and tell the priests to build a chapel here and that people should come in procession.”.

We are listening. We have built a church, although it isn’t really ours until we finish paying off the four-million-dollar debt we owe. Even with our beautiful temple built we still have a church to build, the parish family of Our Lady of Lourdes, the Body of Christ in Miami. Mary is calling us to continue to build and her plan for that is to “come in procession.” Calling us to gather our brothers and sisters, our neighbors and coworkers, our classmates and friends and come in procession to her son – here at Our Lady of Lourdes.

Our Lady of Lourdes is a beautiful and active parish. It has made such an impact that it seems that it has always been here and always will be. But there is still that debt on the church to pay and the annual expense of running the church and school is $6 million. Our annual financial report in the bulletin shows how that money is used and every September we ask everyone to reconsider their financial commitment to the parish and its mission.

I am asking you to commit a full 10% of your annual income to the parish. Our Lady of Lourdes Church is bringing Jesus Christ to the people of Miami, and of the world. Let us not take that for granted. Let’s us answer the call of Our Lady and let us be united.

Msgr. Schwanger


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