at 400 Michigan Ave NE, Washington, 20017-1517 United States
The Basilica of the National Shrine is a National Sanctuary of Prayer and Pilgrimage as designated by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.
Designated by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops as a National Sanctuary of Prayer and Pilgrimage, the Basilica is the nation’s preeminent Marian shrine, dedicated to the patroness of the United States—the Blessed Virgin Mary under her title of the Immaculate Conception. It is oftentimes affectionately referred to as America’s Catholic Church. Visited by Pope Benedict XVI, Pope John Paul II, and Mother Teresa, among others, the Basilica, though distinctly American, rivals the great sanctuaries of Europe and the world. The Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, a Catholic church dedicated to the patroness of our nation, is a place of worship, pilgrimage, evangelization and reconciliation. It offers visitors the occasion for a deepening conversion, a step forward in the journey to God, with Mary as the model for that journey. This monumental church, raised by Catholics of the United States because of their devotion to Mary the Mother of God, gives visibility to their faith and Catholic heritage. Mary’s Shrine invites people from across the country and beyond into the saving moment of faith, hope and charity, so that they may be reconciled and transformed into living symbols of Christ’s presence in the world. It is here that the faithful gather to worship God, give honor to Mary, and are sent to spread God’s word wherever they go.
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