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Friday, January 27, 2006

Church/State Complaint against Grotto Sign Referencing Lourdes Mary Appearance

The Saint Joseph Area Association in Kentucky has spent several years maintaining a Grotto and garden, built in 1927 on the grounds of the former Catholic hospital, St. Joseph Infirmary. The grotto is modeled after a natural grotto at Lourdes in southwest France, famous for the alleged appearance of Mary to the fourteen year old girl Bernadette Soubirous. The Kentucky sign makes reference to the famous Lourdes story.

A complaint has been registered against the sign, claiming the sign violates the separation of church and state. The attorney general is reviewing the wording of the sign.

Gail Linville, the association's president, opposed changing the wording, stating "That's the way the story's been all these years, whether it's fact or fiction."

Grotto marker wording spurs complaint

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