Coming soon ..............


Dear friends,

Since the date of the closure of the sanctuary, the ties we have had with you have been valuable. They have of course nourished the prayer of the chaplains which we have lived as a true mission, in your name and for you, and have allowed those who were to come on pilgrimage to live a strong spiritual experience in their place of confinement. I deeply rejoice at all that has been implemented and which is a sign that "Lourdes is being lived outside of Lourdes".

But I confess to you, it is time for this period to end. For the sanctuary is  for pilgrims and they need Lourdes. We have therefore taken the decision, in full agreement with the prefectural and health authorities, to reopen the sanctuary on Saturday, May 16. We will do this in the first few weeks in a very partial form, since in any case travel beyond 100 kms from home is impossible. Pilgrims will be welcomed from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. at the gates and must wear a mask; they will be supervised so that the barrier measures are properly respected. They will not be able to access the Grotto,  but will be able to gather on the other side of the Gave; confessions will take place in St. Bernadette's Church; they will be able to fill water containers without contact with the fountains and place a candle in the Chapel of Lights. The baths remain closed until further notice.

This system will evolve as new measures are announced by the authorities.

We hope that pilgrimages will return gradually beginning in August, if the epidemic continues to weaken. No doubt it will be difficult this year to bring in patients, but hospitals will be able to be present to represent them and live their pilgrimage in a renewed way. The number of pilgrims will probably be lower than expected, but it would seem a pity that the pilgrimages are simply cancelled. Pilgrims need Lourdes. Society needs Lourdes. The Church needs Lourdes. Perhaps in some places delegations accompanied by a bishop could be provided when the bishop's presence was contemplated. We remain available to discuss all of this with you.
Due to the low participation of pilgrims this year, in agreement with Bishop HEROUARD, Apostolic Delegate for the Sanctuary, we have decided to extend for the 2021 season the theme "I am the Immaculate Conception". Enrichments to that which has already been provided to you will be available later.

Dear friends, I rejoice at the possibility for the sanctuary to resume its welcoming role. I am also moved by this ,as this period of closure has been painful for many. We are determined to be careful and respectful of the instructions of the authorities with whom I am in constant contact. We also want to use this time to rethink a number of ways we operate. Your help will be invaluable to us.

Finally, I conclude  by thanking all those who have already expressed their financial solidarity with the sanctuary and those who plan to do so soon. There will probably be an 8 million euro deficit at the end of the season, which will dampen our ability to resume and invest for the future. With all my heart, thank you!

While anticipating the joy of seeing you in Lourdes, I repeat my friendly and sincere sentiments.

Mgr Olivier Ribadeau Dumas
Rector of the Sanctuary of Our Lady of lourdes


The following message has been received from Mgr Olivier Ribadeau Dumas, the Rector of the Sanctuary of Our Lady of Lourdes.  We thank those who have already sent donations through our Diocesan Pilgrimage Office for their generosity and support.
Dear friends,

In my last letter, I told you about the financial difficulties that the Sanctuary is going through because of the decision to close on 17 th March. Since our income is largely based on donations, the absence of pilgrims puts us in a very difficult situation. A number of you have already got in touch independently with the Sanctuary over the past few days to express your desire to stand in financial solidarity with us. Let me tell you how much this gesture means to me, as well as to my fellow “chapelains” and to all of those who work here to welcome you every time you come. The Lourdes family is not a fiction. It is a fact, proven by your actions.

I have included practical instructions for those who wish to make a payment to show your solidarity. I would be grateful if you would disseminate this message to your pilgrims, acknowledging that their generosity never wavered when Lourdes was in danger.

We will reopen the Sanctuary as soon as we can. We know that this year we will not be able to accommodate very many sick pilgrims. But they are and will be present through the continuous prayer of the “chapelains” at the Grotto, and through your presence when that is possible once again.

I know I can count on you and I thank you with all my heart.

Please be assured of my prayers for you, with my very warmest wishes.

Mgr Olivier Ribadeau Dumas
Rector of the Sanctuary of Our Lady of lourdes


How to make a donation?

  • By bank cheque, made payable to the Diocesan Association of Tarbes and Lourdes (or ADTL) Please send your cheque to the following address:

Sanctuaire Notre-Dame de Lourdes Service des Donateurs Opération Covid19 1, avenue Monseigneur Théas 65108 Lourdes Cedex - FRANCE
  • By bank transfer, using the following bank details:

Association Diocésaine de Tarbes et Lourdes Agence : Société générale - Lourdes
IBAN : FR76 30003 02051 00037260102 02 Adresse SWIFT (code BIC) : SOGEFRPP

Important: please make sure you put “Operation Covid19” as your transfer reference and inform us of the transfer by email to: [email protected]


It is with a heavy heart and great sadness that after consultation with the Bishop, our chief medical officer and matron and other key members of our planning team it has been decided that due to the Covid 19 pandemic we have had to cancel our 2020 Pilgrimage. At this stage it is impossible to say whether travel to Lourdes would be possible in July but given the present lockdown and need for self-isolation and social distancing it is impossible for us to organise the necessary training of volunteers and assessment of our assisted pilgrims. Our doctors and nurses are at the frontline of caring for the victims of the pandemic and their focus has to be on that enormous responsibility at this time. I will be writing to all those who have already made bookings for this year’s pilgrimage through our Pilgrimage Office offering them a full refund of monies paid. I am sure that this will be a huge disappointment to all of you as it is to me and my team but the safety and welfare of all our pilgrims is our absolute priority. Let us hold all those associated with our pilgrimage in prayer at this time and ask once again for the protection of Our Lady of Lourdes and St Bernadette:
Our Lady of Lourdes: Pray for us
St Bernadette: Pray for us.
Fr David Long
Pilgrimage Director

Protecting your Privacy

The personal information you provide about yourself on our Lourdes Pilgrimage forms and via other means as requested has been collected for legal reasons and legitimate reasons to help us arrange your visit to Lourdes and in pursuance of the Roman Catholic Faith and charitable works. The personal information about you will be stored securely and will be retained for a period of up to 6 years, following which it will be securely destroyed. Other than as required by Law The Diocese of Shrewsbury will not transfer your personal data to third parties without your permission, and it will not be used for marketing, fundraising purposes. You can read our full Privacy Notice at
                                The Diocese of Shrewsbury is a registered charity with charity number 234025

Get In Touch

Diocesan Pilgrimage Office,
Curial Offices,
2 Park Road South,
Prenton, Wirral CH43 4UX

Bookings & Enquiries:

07773 324 264

Medical Enquiries:

07970 943 940