Colloquium 10-13 February 2017 in LOURDES

On the Occasion of the Twenty-Fifth WORLD DAY OF THE SICK

Provisional Programme

The Magnificat: a Canticle of Hope

‘It is therefore not surprising that Mary, Mother and model of the Church, is invoked and venerated as “Salus infirmorum Health of the sick“. As the first and perfect disciple of her Son, in guiding the Church on her journey she has always shown special solicitude for the suffering…On the Memorial of the apparitions in Lourdes, where Mary chose to manifest her maternal solicitude for the sick, the Liturgy appropriately echoes the Magnificat…The Magnificat is not the canticle of one upon whom fortune smiles…rather it is the thanksgiving of one who knows the hardships of life but trusts in God’s redemptive work…The Church, like Mary, preserves within her the tragedies of humankind and the consolation of God, she keeps them together on the pilgrimage through history…Suffering, when accepted and offered up, and solidarity, when sincere and selfless: are these not perhaps miracles of love?

(Pope Benedict XVI, Homily, Eighteenth World Day of the Sick, 11 February 2010).

‘the Magnificat…is the song of hope, it is the song of the People of God walking through history …today, the Church too sings this in every part of the world. This song is particularly strong in places where the Body of Christ is suffering the Passion. For us Christians, wherever the Cross is, there is hope, always. If there is no hope, we are not Christian. That is why I like to say: do not allow yourselves to be robbed of hope. May we not be robbed of hope, because this strength is a grace, a gift from God which carries us forward with our eyes fixed on heaven. And Mary is always there, near those communities, our brothers and sisters, she accompanies them, suffers with them, and sings the Magnificat of hope with them’.

(Pope Francis, Homily, 15 August 2013).

Friday 10 February, afternoon

Opening of the deliberations, H.E. Msgr. Nicolas BROUWET, Bishop of Tarbes and Lourdes.

H.Em. Cardinal Pietro PAROLIN, Secretary of State, representing the Holy Father.  

H.Em. Cardinal Peter Kodwo Appiah TURKSON, Prefect of the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development.

Dr. Alessandro DE FRANCISCIS, President of the Lourdes Medical Bureau and International Medical Association of Lourdes (AMIL).


Saturday 11 February 10.00: INTERNATIONAL HOLY MASS presided over by H.Em. Cardinal Pietro PAROLIN

Saturday 11 February 15.00: LAUDS AND SUPPLICATIONS


  Eucharistic Adoration – Anointing of the Sick

  (Meditation, H.Em. Cardinal Pietro PAROLIN)

Saturday 11 February 20.30: Paper by Don Carmine ARICE (the Director of the National Office for Pastoral Care in Health of the Italian Bishops’ Conference and member of the Pontifical Commission for the Activities of Public Juridical Persons of the Church in the Healthcare):

‘How the Church in the World is Walking with Mary on the Roads of the Charity of Christ’.

(Testimony of Dr. Domenico Crupi, Director of the ‘House for the Relief of the Suffering’ Hospital of San Giovanni Rotondo, and of Mrs. Claudie BROUILLET, the head of pastoral care for diversely abled people in France).

Sunday 12 February – HOLY MASS presided over by H.Em. Cardinal Peter Kodwo Appiah TURKSON

Paper by H.E. Msgr. Bruno FORTE, Archbishop of Chieti-Vasto: ‘The Church: Mother of Mercy’.

Paper by H.E. Msgr. Pierre d’ORNELLAS, Archbishop of Rennes.

Afternoon:  STUDY GROUPS, each one of which will begin with a paper lasting fifteen minutes.

  1. The Development of the Notion of Healing
    (including the special case of the process of certification in Lourdes).
  2. Being a Physician and a Catholic Today

(ethical questions, secularity, conscientious objection…).

  1. Taking Care of the Whole Person.
  2. The Service that Diversely Abled People Render to Humanity and the Church.
  3. Healings in the Mission of Proclaiming of the Good News

(starting with the Gospels and the Acts of the Apostles).

  1. Accompanying Sick Pilgrims to Lourdes with Assistants

(transport, documents, accommodation, helpers, hospital workers…).

  1. Lourdes and the Signs or Sacraments of Healing: the Sign of Water, Reconciliation and Anointing of the Sick, the Eucharist.
  2. Welcoming Mental Suffering in Lourdes
    (with the question of the prevention of suicide).
  3. Bernadette who Assists the Sick: the Challenges of Presence at the Side of Sick People.
  4. Lourdes and Welcoming People at the End of their Lives.
  5. The Welcoming of Parents who have Lost a Child.
  6. Questions about Pharmacists
    (the acceptance of medical prescriptions and the accompanying of people).
  7. Genetic Manipulations and Transhumanism.
  8. Diocesan and National Directors of Pastoral Care in Health.
  9. Public Responsibility and Service to the Sick.

Sunday 12 February, Evening: First summary report with three voices: a sick or diversely abled person, a physician, a pastor; recommendations to be followed at Lourdes and in people’s homes.

Monday 13 February: the possibility of visiting institutions for sick, frail or diversely abled people, nursing homes, palliative care services…  

Simultaneous translations will be available