March 25 1858, the feast of the Annunciation, Bernadette made her way to the grotto, where the beautiful Lady was already waiting for her. This is what Bernadette herself said about the day:
"I went every day for a fortnight, and each day I asked her who she was – and this petition always made her smile. After the fortnight I asked her three times consecutively. She always smiled. At last I tried for the fourth time. She stopped smiling. With her arms down, she raised her eyes to heaven and then, folding her hands over her breast she said, 'I am the Immaculate Conception.' Then I went back to M. le Curé to tell him that she had said she was the Immaculate Conception, and he asked was I absolutely certain. I said yes, and so as not to forget the words, I had repeated them all the way home."
|How the grotto looked at the time of the apparitions|