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Incorrupt Relic in the Chapel of St. Bernadette in Nevers

Chronicle of Significant Events in the Life of St. Bernadette

7 January 1844

The birth of Bernadette to Francois and Louise Soubirous. She was christened Marie Bernadette on 9th January at St. Peter's Parish Church in Lourdes.

Autumn 1855

The plague broke out in Lourdes. Bernadette was infected by the plague. Although she recovered from it, she fell victim to asthma, and was to suffer for this for the rest of her life.

11 February - 16 July 1858

It was during this period that the eighteen (18) apparitions took place. Our Lady on most occasions simply prayed with Bernadette and allowed herself to be contemplated. At other times, Our Lady would converse with Bernadette, giving her instructions, thus bequeathing to us the message and the spirituality of Lourdes.

19 May 1866

The crypt which formed the basis of the Chapel in Lourdes (desired by Our Lady through Bernadette) was inaugurated and consecrated by Bishop Laurence of Tarbes.

4 July 1866

Bernadette left Lourdes and entered the Convent of Saint Gildard to become a nun under the Order of the Sisters of Charity in Never.

30 October 1867

Bernadette took her Religious Vows together with 43 other novitiates. Bernadette remained in Nevers because she was ill and considered incapable. She was entrusted with the task of working in the infirmary of the convent and of helping in the kitchen.

16 April 1879

Bernadette had been suffering serious attacks of asthma and tuberculosis of the bones of her legs. She died at 3:00pm on this day. Bernadette was just over 35 years old.

23 September 1903

Bernadette's body was exhumed, 30 years after her death, as part of the ecclesiastical investigation leading up to beatification and canonisation. Her body was found to be incorrupt, the whiteness of her body preserved and there was no odour.

14 June 1925

The Beatification of Bernadette.

8 December 1933

Pope Pius XI proclaimed Bernadette Saint. The Canonisation of Bernadette Soubirous took place on this day, which was the Feast of the Immaculate Conception.


St. Bernadette's body is still in a perfect state. Her body, covered by a thick layer of wax for preservation, is resting inside a bronze and crystal urn, in the chapel of the Convent of Nevers in France.

Learn more about St Bernadette and Our Lady of Lourdes.

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