Part of Lourdes has been evacuated after heavy rains caused flash floods across many parts of France. A torrent of water is rushing through the Domaine as the River Gave has burst over the banks.
Thirteen departments across the country are on orange alert for flooding Meteo Pyrenees report today. No casualties have been reported, but last week four people died in weather-related incidents in France.
Bishop Philip Egan tweeted at about 11am Wednesday morning: 'Please pray for Fr Chris Rutledge and his parish group on pilgrimage to Lourdes. They are safe but last night the River Gave broke its banks. The Grotto is flooded and the International Mass in the Underground basilica cancelled. Flooded everywhere. May God protect everyone.'
•See LATEST update: ICN 14 June 2018 - Lourdes update: Grotto safe as floodwaters recede www.indcatholicnews.com/news/35095
See the latest reports on the Lourdes website www.lourdes-france.org/en/tv-lourdes & French news service rfi: http://en.rfi.fr/20180612-paris-regional-train-derailed-storm
Twitter: Sanctuaire Lourdes
'#inondations2018 crue du Gave de Pau - Le Sanctuaire de #Lourdes reste ouvert. La sécurité des pèlerins est totale. Les célébrations connaissent quelques modifications de lieu.'
Translated from French:
'#inondations2018 flood of the Gave de Pau-The sanctuary remains open. The safety of the pilgrims is total. Some of the celebrations have been moved to different locations.'
These videos on the Lourdes website shows how the flooding developed. Watch: www.youtube.com/watch?v=FdHGNePXu0o
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