Lourdes a source of great comfort
Sir -- I am lucky to be able to purchase the Sunday Independent in my local Tesco. I take days reading it from cover to cover, then it's passed on to others who so enjoy the wit and information. This week (Sunday Independent, August 8, 2010), I was shocked to read Emer O'Kelly's article on "Spiritual tourism" and the denigration of Lourdes. She was only 12 years old on her visit so I can understand her attitude at that time -- due to her youth. But to continue to use that experience without going there as an adult, I can't understand.
I am 75, my husband John is 77, and we have made five visits there over the years and enjoyed every moment. Eighteen months ago John suffered a massive stroke which has left him unable to walk or talk. He lives with me and carers come four times a day to care for his physical needs. Lourdes is even more important now.
John can never stay in a hotel -- so if Ireland and its "spiritual tourism" can cater for the handicapped we will be first in the queue. Our next visit to Lourdes is September 6-10. He is really looking forward to a real break from TV 12 hours a day pinned in a chair.