The 75th anniversary of the apparitions of the Virgin Mary to an eleven year-old girl named Mariette will take place on May 31, 2008 in Belgium. The celebrations will be joined by Pope Benedict’s special envoy, Cardinal Godfried Danneels.
On Saturday, the Vatican made public a letter from the Pope, written in Latin and dated March 27, to Cardinal Godfried Danneels, the archbishop of Mechelen-Brussels, Belgium, making him the papal envoy to the anniversary celebrations of the apparitions of the Virgin of the Poor.
The celebrations will take place at the shrine of Banneux, Belgium on May 31. The Virgin of the Poor first appeared to Mariette Becco on January 15, 1933 and lasted until March 2 of the same year.
At her second apparition, the Blessed Mother led Mariette from her house to a spring, which she told the girl would bring healing to all nations.
Many people, including Mariette's father, were converted to Catholicism upon hearing accounts of the apparition. Five hundred thousand pilgrims visit the site of the apparitions every year and over fifty miraculous cures have been documented at the spring.
Cardinal Danneels will be accompanied on his mission by Fr. Karl Gatzweiler and Fr. Joseph Bodeson, members of the cathedral chapter of Liege, Belgium.