16 Dec

The Feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary and historic Assumption Grotto Church is being celebrated in Detroit at Seymour and Gratiot Avenue, Wednesday August 15th, from morn to night.  Shades of the song ‘There is a rose in Spanish Harlem’, there is a bright light in Detroit, a tribute to Bernadette.

In 1858, a peasant girl by the name of Bernadette of Soubirous claimed to see a vision of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Lourdes, France. Pilgrims to the crude grotto reported many healings. A magnificent shrine was built in Lourdes, France where millions of pilgrims has since visited seeking its healings. The Lourdes Shrine at Assumption Grotto, the oldest outdoor Marian shrine in Michigan, the second oldest church in Detroit, was dedicated May 29, 1881. Statues depicting Saint Bernadette of Soubirous’ vision of the Blessed Virgin Mary decorate the fountain in front of the shrine. Farmers from all parts of Michigan carried in the huge boulders that ring around the shrine and the cemetery. Stones and limestone, inscribed with names and dedications, provide a trove of local history. Pilgrims to the Lourdes Shrine at Assumption Grotto Catholic Church in Detroit, report conversions and cures. Crutches and braces some septugenarians recall seeing in the AssumptionGrottoChurch are housed in a reliquary in the shrine gift shop. Pope Leo XIII authorized the Detroit shrine, in a signed proclamation, for all who visited and prayed. The church, designated as a Michigan State Historic Site, is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

A spectacular candlelight procession will lead along Gratiot in to the Cemetery at Lourdes Shrine, after 7:00pm, just like in Lourdes, France. Religious groups of faithful, singing in chorus, will carry banners and flags representing their groups. A statue of Our Lady of Lourdes on a special platform held high aloft will be carried by parishioners, leading the procession of priests and faithful to the Detroit shrine of miracles. Masses: 6:30am, 9:30am, Noon. Blessing of the Sick: 3:00pm. Blessing of Miraculous Medals and of Herbs, Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament, recitation of the rosary, praying the Stations of the Cross and confessions: 11:00am,1:30 pm,  3:45pm. Consecration to the Blessed Virgin Mary at 5:00pm. Organ recital until 6:00pm. Hot dogs, hamburgers, chips, pop, water and ice cream all day

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