France: Renovation of the rock of the Grotto at Lourdes

Source: FSSPX News

It has recently become necessary to do some important technical servicing of the rock of the Grotto at Lourdes due to falling rocks.  After inspecting the rock, experts determined that an in-depth intervention was needed. Workers will be re-affixing some loose blocks of rock (weighing nearly 15 tons) to the wall and installing wire mesh to secure and catch other loose rocks. The shotcrete  process has been utilized to strengthen weakened stone. The securing of the rock of the Grotto will necessitate changes to the surrounding vegetation during the next several months.

In accordance with the wishes of Pope Pius IX, who promulgated the dogma of the Immaculate Conception on December 8, 1854, Bishop Laurence (1790-1870), who was Bishop of Tarbes, preserved the Grotto as it was during the apparitions of 1858. The necessary construction work did not change the basic structure. The bottom of the cave, the shape of the arch and the niche of the Apparition have not changed since the time of St. Bernadette. (Sources : Apic/sanctuairesdelourdes – DICI n° 230 du 19/02/11)