The spring of St. Joseph in Cotignac has been known for centuries as a place of healing and refreshment.
Compared to the numerous apparitions of the Blessed Virgin Mary, there are relatively few approved private revelations of St. Joseph. But there are some. One of those approved appearances of St. Joseph occurred in Cotignac, France, on June 7, 1660.
On an extremely hot summer day, the humble shepherd Gaspard Ricard was parched with thirst. His flask of water was dry and he was no where near a stream or body of water. Ricard sat down on the grass in agony.
At that point an older man suddenly appeared to him and said, “I am Joseph. Lift it and you will drink.”
Joseph was pointing to a large boulder nearby, a rock that Ricard knew he couldn’t lift by himself. Yet, he tried, and somehow he was able to lift the boulder with ease. Underneath it was a fresh spring of water.
Overjoyed, Ricard looked up to thank the mysterious stranger, but he had already vanished.
Ricard rushed to the village to tell everyone about the miraculous spring. Soon enough the spring became associated with countless miracles, both physical and spiritual, and a shrine was built at the location.
The spring of St. Joseph in Cotignac has been a pilgrimage site ever since, and a nearby shrine was eventually combined with a separate apparition of the Blessed Virgin Mary and St. Joseph that occurred in 1519 under the title of Our Lady of Graces.