The Apparition of The Blessed Virgin Mary at La Salette


Near this little fountain the two children lay down on the grass and fell asleep. How long their slumber lasted is not certain – half an hour perhaps, or three quarters of an hour or possibly more. In any case Melanie suddenly awoke and called Maximin: “Memin, Memin, let us go and find our cows, I cannot see them anywhere.”

Of course, being at the bottom of the little ravine, they could not see the meadow where they had left them. Quickly they climbed the slope opposite Mount Gargas (hence they were standing on what is now the esplanade in front of the basilica). Turning around they could view the entire alpine pasture land and were greatly relieved to see that their cows had remained where they had been left, peaceably chewing the cud. Reassured, Melanie began to redescend towards the dried-up fountain to recover her little sack of provisions before once again watering the cows. Half-way down the grassy slope she paused immobilized, frozen with fear. “Memin”, she called out, “look at that great light over there”. “Where is it?”, the boy replied, as he ran and stood at her side. (At the place of the Apparition two statues represent the children on the slope of the ravine, in the firststage of the Event.)

At the very spot where they had slept was a globe of fire, as if, in the children’s words, “the sun had fallen there” . The light swirled, then grew in size and, opening, disclosed within it a woman, seated, her head in her hands, her elbows on her knees, in the attitude of one oppressed with grief.

Melanie, in her fright, raised her hands and dropped her shepherd’s staff. Maximin thought only of defending himself. “Keep your stick” , he said to her, “I will keep mine and will give it a good whack if it does anything to us” …Even after she conversed with them, the children could not identify their heavenly Visitor. They would simply call her ” the Beautiful Lady”.

Read more