The Incorruptible Sister Bernadette

As the story goes, Bernadette Soubirous saw visions of the Virgin Mary 18 times. The Virgin told her to dig into the dirt with her hands, and when she did, a water came up from a spring known as Lourdes. To this day it still flows, and thousands of miracles and cures are said to have happened because of it’s water. People from all over the world, from all religions go to Lourdes.

Bbernadetteernadette joined the Sisters of Charity of Nevers and lived in the convent until her death in 1879 and was exhumed in September 1909 and again in April 1919. When exhumed in 1925 – 46 years after her death – there was a slight discoloration on the body, so a light wax covering was made for her face and hands – and the body was never reburied. It remains on display in the Chapel of the Convent of St. Gildard at Nevers

There is no explanation for this as there were no embalming or special treatments given to her body at the time of her burial. The Catholic Church recognizes this as a sign of holiness and one of the ‘traits’ to entitle someone to Sainthood.

Some say that Bernadette isn’t as ‘incorruptible’ as her reputation and body leads us to believe and that the “light coating” of wax on her body is actually more than just a light coat, contending that her hands and face are completely made of wax all together as her real body decayed away.  While the close-up pictures of Sister Bernadette do raise some suspicions, the church is obviously not going to let anyone investigate.

And so, the story and the mystery remains… as does Sister Bernadette.

About the author

Jason Donner

Jason Donner devoured the universe and you are all living inside him.