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[Lourdes, A Modern Pilgrimage, 1981, by travel writer Patrick Marnham is a very even-handed account of the past and present history of the most popular Marian shrine in Europe. Much of this personal account is given over to the subject of miracles, as one would expect in any book about Lourdes. When militant atheist Richard Dawkins visited Lourdes for his television documentary, The Root of all Evil?, he was informed that there were only sixty-six “declared” miracles. He complained, rightly or wrongly, that that was too few to be statistically significant, conveniently assuming that only “declared” miracles needed to be taken into account. There is a link below to a PDF document containing the last five pages of Marnham’s book. They shed some light on why so few of the sudden fantastic healings, among the many thousands claimed, have been officially recognized by the Church. Indeed, one of the most sensational of all the Lourdes’ miracles was never declared, that of Jack Traynor of Liverpool in 1923. The reasons are dealt with earlier on in the book and are very instructive. The story of Jack Traynor is easily found online.]

The last five pages of Lourdes, A Modern Pilgrimage

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