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Brezje Slovenia – National Shrine Mary Help of Christians

Bazilika Marije pomagaj, Brezje, Zagrebška županija, Slovenija

Website of the Sanctuary

+ 386 4 537 07 00

Every day from 7.00 am to 8.00 pm

 

»A PILGRIMAGE is an image of our life and pilgrimage shrines are IMAGES OF HEAVENLY JERUSALEM.« Pope John Paul II who visited Brezje on May 17th 1996.

Brezje Slovenia - National Shrine Mary Help of Christians

Brezje Slovenia – National Shrine 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.

The pilgrim feels welcomed by our Lady. May Mary grant that the visit to her altar become a real encounter between her and her people!

Brezje Slovenia - National Shrine Mary Help of Christians

See our list of top 15 Catholic shrines around the world. 

See more European Shrines and Basilicas. 

Rediscovering the traditional ways of pilgrimage

Numerous pilgrims are rediscovering the traditional ways of making a pilgrimage and they come to Brezje on foot.

A pilgrim sets off on a sacred path in endeavors and sacrifice to reach his destination and meet Mary, Mother of Hope and Consolation. A pilgrimage to Brezje is very important to the Slovenians and many continue to vow to reach Brezje on foot.

But Mary Help of Christians has a place in the hearts of many other European nations, too – the Croats, Austrians, Italians and Hungarians. An important decision in any pilgrim’s life is to come to Brezje on foot.

Brezje Slovenia - National Shrine Mary Help of Christians

Many groups conclude their pilgrimage here. Parish groups journeying on a pilgrimage have a unique opportunity to strengthen their ties, spiritually enrich each individual and the community.

Nativity Sets

Behind the church there is a Nativity Museum, which is open daily, with the exception of Mondays. The museum’s collection was put together by dedicated individuals who belong to the Association of Nativity Lovers and continue this rich Slovenian heritage.

‘God is coming to us!’ is the message of the Advent and Christmas, but none less beautiful and alive throughout the rest of the year. We invite you to take a look at the numerous representations of the Nativity sets and admire their beauty.

Brezje Slovenia - National Shrine Mary Help of Christians

There are also a number of votive tablets, whose images represent only a fraction of the entire spiritual and cultural heritage offered To Our Lady by generations of pilgrims.

The Miracle of Conversion

Numerous pilgrims share the outstanding happenings that have occured to them at Brezje or after praying to Mary Help of Christians. The first miraculous healings took place 50 years after establishing the pilgrimage and have continued with testimonies ever since. Every day the miracle of conversion takes place in Brezje’s confessionals, with many people seeking and receiving God’s peace into their hearts.

The procession of candles

As a sign of gratitude and devotion to Mary Help of Christians there is part in a procession of candles on Saturdays after the Mass (from White Sunday to All Saints’ Day).

They start an hour earlier by worshipping the Holiest and praying the Seraphic Rosary. Slovenian parishes coshape the evening procession. They carry the candles that are hand-made by a Carthusian monk, which creates a special connection.

Let us remain close in the same prayer! May the Lord bless you abundantly!

Nativity Sets

Behind the church there is a Nativity Museum, which is open daily, with the exception of Mondays. The museum’s collection was put together by dedicated individuals who belong to the Association of Nativity Lovers and continue this rich Slovenian heritage. ‘God is coming to us!’ is the message of the Advent and Christmas, but none less beautiful and alive throughout the rest of the year. We invite you to take a look at the numerous representations of the Nativity sets and admire their beauty. There are also a number of votive tablets, whose images represent only a fraction of the entire spiritual and cultural heritage offered To Our Lady by generations of pilgrims.

The Miracle of Conversion

Numerous pilgrims share with us the outstanding happenings that have occured to them at Brezje or after praying to Mary Help of Christians. The first miraculous healings took place 50 years after establishing the pilgrimage and have continued with testimonies ever since. Every day the miracle of conversion takes place in Brezje’s confessionals, with many people seeking and receiving God’s peace into their hearts.

The procession of candles

As a sign of our gratitude and devotion to Mary Help of Christians we take part in a procession of candles on Saturdays after the Mass (from White Sunday to All Saints’ Day). We start an hour earlier by worshipping the Holiest and praying the Seraphic Rosary. Slovenian parishes coshape the evening procession. We carry the candles that are hand-made by a Carthusian monk, which creates a special connection.

Let us remain close in the same prayer! May the Lord bless you abundantly!

Getting here

The National Shrine Mary Help of Christians at Brezje lies in the north-western part of Slovenia. The nearest town is Radovljica. The quickest way to reach Brezje is by motorway. When driving from Ljubljana, take the exit Brezje.

GPS coordinates

Individual GPS Northing (N) : 46,329 GPS Easting (E) : 14,2324

Let us remain close in the same prayer! May the Lord bless you abundantly!

Mass Schedule:

  • Weekdays: 7am, 8.30am, 10am, 7pm (6pm)*
  • Saturdays: 7am, 8.30am, 10am, 4pm, 7pm (6pm)*
  • Sundays and religious holidays: 7am, 8.30am, 10am, 11.30am, 4pm, 7pm (6pm)*

Let us remain close in the same prayer! May the Lord bless you abundantly!

Short history

  • 1800 Parish priest from Mošnje, father Urban Ažbe, gives orders to enlarge the Church of St. Vitus with a small chapel in honour of Mary Help of Christians
  • 1814 Painter Leopold Layer from Kranj paints the chapel and the image of Our Lady after a motif from Innsbruck, Austria
  • 1863 After several miraculous healings, pilgrimage to Brezje becomes widely popular making the church too small to welcome all the pilgrims
  • 1898 Newly-built Franciscan monastery is consecrated
  • 1900 Present-day church is built and consecrated
  • 1907 Bishop Anton Bonaventura Jeglič crowns the image of Mary Help of Christians
  • 1935 Holy painting leaves Brezje for the first time – Our Lady travels to Ljubljana as a patroness of a Eucharistic Congress
  • 1937 Architect Jože Plečnik designs the park in front of the church
  • 1941 – 1947 The holy painting of Our Lady is kept safe during the war at Trsat (Croatia) and in Ljubljana cathedral
  • 1988 Pope John Paul II raises the church to the status of a Minor Basilica
  • 1996 Pope John Paul II visits the Shrine. The holy painting visits the parishes of the Gorenjska (Upper Carniola) and Dolenjska (Lower Carniola) regions and is the patroness at a joyous celebration of 1250 years of Christianity in Slovenia at the Stožice Hippodrome
  • 2000 Slovenian Diocesan Conference declares the Basilica at Brezje a National Shrine of Our Lady
  • 2007 Solemn celebration of the centenary of the crowning, and inauguration of the outdoor space for Holy Mass
  • 2010 Mary Help of Christians travels to Slovenian Eucharistic Congress in Celje

Let us remain close in the same prayer! May the Lord bless you abundantly!

Posted in Europe and Slovenia

One Review

  1. Manca

    Every year, young people from Ljubljana do a special night pilgrimage – they go on foot from Ljubljana to Brezje. This year it will be in the night from June 23th to June 24th 2017. Many young people, mostly high school pupils and students, start together at 8pm in Ljubljana and come to Brezje early in the morning and attend the pilgrimage mass at 7am. It’s a very nice event to exerience, no matter the age, you only need to be prepared for 8h walk.
    p.s. and don’t miss a very good apple strudel in the cafebar near the church in Brezje 🙂

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