The Basilica – the Sanctuary of Our Lady

November 19, 2013 9:17 pm

It is an extraordinary place. Every time I come here I am deeply impressed. It is so much alike our Jasna Gora but is also very unique. Maybe this is because it is so diversified and full of Indians coming from various tribes and wearing their tribal clothes.

There are 12 million pilgrims coming here every year, three times as many as to Czestochowa. People come here all the time. When a baby is born, it is brought here to be presented to Our Lady and flowers are brought to her in big heaps.


Candles and water is brought to be consecrated and people come to dance before Our Lady.


IMG_1146Today I didn’t take lunch (partly because I was not entitled to a common lunch and I didn’t want to lose… time on individual lunch) and I went to visit Our Lady. I didn’t quite succeed because here when a priest is around, people approach him to ask for a blessing for a child or wife or mother. When I sat in a bench, one family came for a blessing and then a whole queue was formed, so I had to leave – not because I didn’t want to bless but because The Holy Mass began.

But I wish all priests could have such experiences – a queue of people asking to be prayed for and blessed. I had do refuse when asked for confession in Spanish. It is so sad but I need some more time, this is what I say to myself but so far I have had too little time to do it and there are people around who speak English. I keep promising myself that this will change and will probably change soon because Bishop Carlos is planning for me a new place to stay in a parish where no-one speaks English.

And coming back to the Congress: it’s been very interesting and today we’re having a presentation of all group work. I keep learning new things. The most interesting thing today was a comment of one of the participants: Jesus said: GO! and we say COME! Perhaps we should go back to the roots? maybe that’s why Pope Francis says we must be on the way and if we’re not on the way, it is not good.

In the evening we had a beautiful celebration for Our Lady when a rose offered by Pope Francis was presented. Just like Our Lady asked Juan Diego to offer her roses, She is offered roses today. It’s difficult to hold back tears.IMG_1151

Greetings on the way to the last day of the Congress

Padre J.




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Categorised in: Fr Jarosław Szymczak