5. Our Lady of Laus, 1664 – 1718 in Saint-Etienne-le-Laus, France
In May of 1664, a 17-year-old by the name of Benoite Rencurel saw an apparition of St. Maurice, a 3rd-century martyr locally venerated. In this apparition, St. Maurice told the shepherdess to go to the Valley of Kilns, above Saint-Etienne, where she would see the Mother of God. On May 16, Benoite took her sheep to the small grotto described to her by St. Maurice, and saw the Blessed Virgin Mary holding Jesus in her arms.
For about four months, Our Lady appeared in the same spot every day.
Mary directed Benoite to a nearby chapel, leading her by an overwhelming scent of a beautiful perfume, and told her the chapel would become a place of conversion for sinners and a site of frequent apparitions. She also told Benoite the oil from the sanctuary lamp would work miracles with the infirm if they received the anointing with faith in her intercession.
At the heart of the message given to Benoite is a conversion of souls, which aims to bring full reconciliation with oneself, with others, and with God.
On May 5, 2008, Bishop Jean-Michel de Falco Leandri announced the Holy See’s recognition of the apparitions as Our Lady of Laus, Refuge of Sinners.