20th May

When St Bernadette asked the heavenly visitor to the Lourdes grotto what her name was, she just smiled. This was a very real response in itself! Finally she answered I AM THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION referring to the dogma of her Immaculate Conception which was proclaimed 4 years earlier. Below is a photo of the Lourdes grotto where this took place; some pilgrims can be seen venerating the spot. I had the privilege of concelebrating Mass there last Sunday morning.

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If Mary was conceived without Original Sin then this clearly implies that her soul and personhood – and even her guardian angel – were present from this time onward. This is one reason why as Christians we defend the right to life of preborn babies from conception onwards as we do the right to life of born babies. It is also the reason why abortifacient birth control such as the IUD/Coil, hormonal implants and ALL varieties of the “Pill” are morally similar to regular abortion – as they some of the time work after the conception of a new human. Furthermore IVF is in this same moral category as most of the 30 embryos produced in a treatment are destroyed. It is a further wrong that these embryos are manufactured apart from the natural way intended by God.