Tuesday, November 10, 2009

The Church of Our Lady of the Pillar
is near the River Ebro in the province of Zaragoza, west of Barcelona on the coast of Spain. It is reputed to be the first Church dedicated to Mary in history. The location is considered the birthplace of Christianity in Spain and has been the destination of pilgrims for hundreds of years.

The architecture is of baroque style, and the present building was predominantly built between 1681 and 1872. Zaragoza is some Islamic architectural influence which means there are more mosaics and more colors.

The statue and pillar have been preserved however for almost 2000 years. Numerous healings throughout the ages have been attributed to the Virgin by those visiting the site seeking her help.

According to legend, the Virgin Mary appeared miraculously to Saint James the Great in the 1st century, standing on a pillar.This legend is commemorated by a famous Catholic basilica called Nuestra SeƱora del Pilar (”Our Lady of the Pillar”). Her feast day is also celebrated every 12th of October. For centuries, rivers of pilgrims have continued to visit the Shrine of Saragossa.

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