For thousands of years, people have been visiting important religious sites. If we ask, why should this practice be important? The answer is important to our spiritual growth. A Shrine is officially defined as a holy or sacred place, which is dedicated to a specific martyr, saint, Our Blessed Mother, or similar figure of awe and respect, at which they are venerated. A Shrine gives us another place to truly learn about our God, Our Blessed Mother, and many of the saints, each one honoring and focusing on a story, a history and giving us better understanding our faith. Those who visit the Shrine of Our Lady of Consolation say that their visit is both a spiritual and physical journey. Coming physically to Our Lady’s Shrine, we respond to the invitation she gave to St. Catherine of Sienna, “Come to the altar and pray, and great graces will be shed upon you.” This practice can bring us a great sense of peace, reflection and even accomplishment.
Shrines are a place of learning, love, and refuge from our hectic and sometimes spiritually deprived lives. Shrines are often associated with intercessory prayers for healing of various ailments or other troubles. They also bring Catholics together in community of prayer and their faith. Taking time for our spiritual well-being and/or physical healing is an important part of our journey here on earth as Catholics. Through a pilgrimage, we can find solace in the planning, traveling and visiting of shrines themselves. For those who cannot join us this year, you can be with us in prayer. Mass at the Shrine begins at 11:00AM. At that same time, you can be united with us by reciting this prayer:
Blessed Mary, Mother of Consolation, pray with me to our loving Father as I live this day. Assist me, gracious Queen of Heaven, to live in such a way that I might bring the message of God’s loving kindness to those around me. It was your own Son, Mary, who loved me so much that He gave His very life for me. I hope to live in the sign of His Cross, to proclaim His Gospel through my actions today. Help me to find patience and kindness of which you are such a perfect example. Be my companion today, O Blessed Mary. When worry and doubt fill my mind, gently guide me to our Lord. Remind me that it is Christ who wants me to entrust all those moments to Him. In particular, Mary, intercede for me for the particular intentions on my mind and heart…. Guide me with your help and love, that I might do the Lord’s will in all things today and every day. Amen