The European Marian Network joins 21 Marian shrines and pilgrimages from different countries in Europe. The European Marian Network was formed in 2003. Our Blessed Virgin Mary is venerated in every country in different ways and by different Christian confessions.
Many of them are situated behind the former «Iron Curtain». Almost every European country is represented in the European Marian Network. The best known Sanctuary of each country was chosen.
Here is the complete list of the European Marian Network
- Altotting (Germany) – Our Lady of Grace
- Banneux (Belgium) – The Virgin of the poor
- Brezje (Slovenia) – Mary Help of Christians
- Csíksomlyó (Romania) – Our Lady of Csíksomlyó
- Czestochowa (Poland) – Our Lady, Queen of Poland
- Einsiedeln (Switzerland) – Our Lady of the hermits
- Fatima (Portugal) – Queen of the peace in the world
- Gibraltar – Our Lady of Europa
- Knock (Ireland) – Our Lady, Queen of Ireland
- Levoca (Slovakia) – Our Lady of the Visitation
- Loreto (Italia) – The Santa Casa
- Lourdes (France) – The Immaculate Conception
- Mariapocs (Hungary) – Our Lady of Máriapócs
- Mariazell (Austria) – The Big Mother of Austria
- Marija Bistrica (Croatia) – Mary of snow
- Malta – Our Lady of Mellieha
- Vilnius (Lithuania) – Our Lady of the Gate of Dawn
- Walsingham (England) – The Holy House of Annunciation
- Zaragoza (Spain) – Our Lady of Pilar
- Zarvanyzia (Ukraine) – The Mother of God in Zarvanyzia
- Mátraverebély (Hungary) – Our Lady of Mátraverebély
1. Altotting (Germany) – Our Lady of Grace
For over 1250 years Altötting has been Bavaria’s spiritual centre and for over 500 years has held the position of the principle Marian pilgrimage site in the German-speaking world.
2. Banneux (Belgium) – The Virgin of the poor
From the 15th of January till the 2nd of March 1933, Our Lady appeared to Mariette Beco, a young girl aged 11 years, eigth times, calling herself the VIRGIN OF THE POOR. The so-called Little Chapel was built and inaugurated in 1933.
3. Brezje (Slovenia) – Mary Help of Christians
The Basilica of St. Mary Help of Christians of Brezje is a Slovenian National Marian Shrine. Thousands of pilgrims are mysteriously united to Mary and all those who turn to her are brought by her to God.
4. Csíksomlyó (Romania) – Our Lady of Csíksomlyó
5. Czestochowa (Poland) – Our Lady, Queen of Poland
The Image of Our Lady of Jasna Gora, also known as the Icon of Our Lady of Czestochowa, having dimnsion of 121,8 x 81,3 cm,. depicts Blessed Virgin Mary holding the Child Jesus on Her left hand. The image represents monumental and dignified iconographic structure of a Bizantine Hodigitria, the one who points the way to salvation. She is a Guide, leading the entire humanity to Jesus Christ.
6. Einsiedeln (Swiss) – Our Lady of the hermits
Einsiedeln is the oldest and most important place of pilgrimage in Switzerland. Its origins date back to the 11th century. During the Middle-ages Einsiedeln was an important stop-over for the pilgrims on their way to Santiago de Compostela. The main focus of religious attraction is the Lady Chapel with the Black Madonna
7. Fatima (Portugal) – Queen of the peace in the world
Sanctuary of Our Lady of Fatima Portugal – Santuario de Nossa Senhora de Fatima is one of the largest Marian shrines in the world. Our Lady of Fatima is the title given to the Blessed Virgin Mary according to her apparitions to three shepherd children at Fatima on the 13th day of six consecutive months in 1917. Fatima Portugal, receives about 4-5 million pilgrims a year.
8. Gibraltar – Our Lady of Europa
The entire European continent was consecrated under the protection of Our Lady of Europe in the early 14th century from the Shrine in Gibraltar where devotion still continues to this day, over 700 years on.
9. Knock (Ireland) – Our Lady, Queen of Ireland
Knock Shrine, located in co. Mayo is Ireland;s National Marian Shrine where over 1.5 million pilgrims visit each year. The Story of Knock began on the 21st August, 1879 when, at approximately 8 O’ clock in the evening, fifteen people from the village of Knock in Co. Mayo, witnessed an Apparition of Our Lady, St. Joseph, St. John the Evangelist, a Lamb and cross on an altar at the gable wall of the Parish Church.
10. Levoca (Slovakia) – Our Lady of the Visitation
Mariánska hora (Marian Hill) in Levoča is one of the oldest and best known pilgrimage sites in Slovakia. The pilgrimage that takes place annually on the first Sunday in July may be traced back to the times when the Friars Minor, spreading Marian veneration, consecrated the chapel built on the hill to the Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary at the end of the 14th century.
11. Loreto (Italia) – The Santa Casa
The Basilica della Santa Casa (English: Basilica of the Holy House) is a Catholic place of pilgrimage in Loreto, Italy, containing the house in which the Virgin Mary lived. An ancient tradition tells that the walls of the Shrine existed in Nazareth, Galilea: the Holy House is the same House where Our Lady Mary was born, grew up and received the angelic announcement.
12. Lourdes (France) – The Immaculate Conception
Several churches and basilicas in Lourdes associated with Marian apparitions receive over 5 million pilgrims a year, making Lourdes the second most visited Christian pilgrimage site in Europe after Rome. Each year, 700 tons of candles burn for you and those who have not been able to come. The volutes of smoke represent millions of intentions of prayers and wishes. Also, light is a very important sign in the sacred history.
13. Mariapocs (Hungary) – Our Lady of Máriapócs
Mariapocs is the most famous and – at the same time – the mostly visited place of worship in Hungary. Mariapocs is the beloved spiritual centre of the Greek Catholic faithful of the Carpathian Basin and member of the European Marian Network. Church that has won its fame through the weeping Blessed Virgin’s picture worthily is visited by 600.000-800.000 pilgrims and tourists each year.
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14. Mariazell (Austria) – The Big Mother of Austria
It is a site of pilgrimage for Catholics from Austria and neighboring countries to its east. The object of veneration is an image of the Virgin Mary reputed to work miracles, carved in lime-tree wood. With inhabitants numbering only 2000, one can nevertheless assume over one million pilgrims and visitors will come to Mariazell annually.
15. Marija Bistrica (Croatia) – Mary of snow
The removal of the statue, its hiding, and two findings awoke the belief in its miraculous power. The Mother of God of Bistrica has been the consolatrix of Christians during Turkish danger, a helper both in the First and the Second World Wars, as well as in the Homeland War.
16. Malta – Our Lady of Mellieha
On the last Sunday of September, every year the Mellieha Sanctuary Feast is held, as a commemoration of the coronation of the painting of Our Lady of Mellieha in 1899.
17. Vilnius (Lithuania) – Our Lady of the Gate of Dawn
People had recourse to Our Lady of the Gate of Dawn not only in times of fires and wars. After the Third Partition of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth in 1795, the largest part of Lithuania, including Vilnius, and later the entire country, was annexed by Russia. Devotion to Our Lady of the Gates of Dawn grew alongside with persecutions.
18. Walsingham (England) – The Holy House of Annunciation
In answer to her prayer, the Virgin Mary led her in spirit to Nazareth, showed her the house where the Annunciation occurred, and asked her to build a replica in Walsingham to serve as a perpetual memorial of the Annunciation.
19. Zaragoza (Spain) – Our Lady of Pilar
According to an old tradition, the arrival of Virgin Mary in mortal flesh to Zaragoza is the origin of the Sanctuary and its devotion. The Holy Virgin gave James the Pillar, a veined marble column in which her image stands today, as a symbol of the strength that his faith should have. Virgin Mary asked James to build a temple using the column she brought as foundation, becoming the first Marian temple in the Christianity.