At the Grotto, in the spirit of St Francis of Assisi
The Franciscan Community of the Missionaries of the Immaculate, consisting in Lourdes, of three priests from Romania, was given the mission of animating the liturgy at the Grotto. One of them, Brother Cristian Roca explained: “We are present at every mass to organise the service at the altar. It is important, indeed, to try to keep a liturgical harmony in spite of the diversity of the priests who come to celebrate. Their culture can be sometimes very different and they can be very moved while celebrating at the Grotto. Our work is therefore to accompany them.” At the Grotto, nuns, too, act as sacristans; they are the Franciscan Sisters of the Cross of Lebanon. They also keep a guest-house, near the Sanctuary, for Christians from the East. This way, St Francis of Assisi’s spirituality is present in the heart of Lourdes.