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700th anniversary of the Mother of God's Shrine in Loreto

700th anniversary of the Mother of God's Shrine in Loreto

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Datum izida:11/17/1994 11:00:00 PM
Oblikovanje:Matjaž Učakar
Motiv:The black figure of Mother of God with the Child
Tisk:DELO - TISKARNA d. d., Ljubljana
Izvedba:5-colour offset
Papir:Chancellor oba free L.S.PVA GMD 100g, gummed
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Zobčanje:comb
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700th anniversary of the Mother of God's Shrine in Loreto

<b>On the 700th Anniversary of the Mother of God's Shrine in Loreto</b><p><b>About Pilgrimages and the Meaning of them</b><br>At present memories arevalued again. Some years ago all our attention was directed atnovelties. It was only the novelties that could appease us, andwe had hunger for everything new. Today, however, it is believedthat the new is what has roots; wisdom becomes popular, and experienceis appreciated. The modern man is a pilgrim again. Among the pilgrimsthere are even the unbelieving - people who are seeking for something,people in love, the old and the weak. Pilgrimages have been madeby families and peoples. When man goes on a pilgrimage, he setsfoot on a path and knows that the path is leading somewhere; heknows it will take him to his destination and that at the endthere will be someone expecting him. From his pilgrimage he returnschanged. In his mind's eye he can still see what he had seen,and he is enriched by a new <i>raison d'etre.</i> Pilgrimagesbring people together; from a pilgrimage one never returns alone.The pilgrims' prayers and thanksgivings make all the limits andobstacles vanish. It is not unusual for the places of pilgrimageto be situated practically in the centre around which a nationgathers like a company at table. Such, for instance, is the pilgrimageplace of Brezje in Slovenia. Some other big pilgrims' shrinesare situated at the cross-roads of different cultures. In Slovenia,such are the shrines of Ptujska Gora, Višarje, Trsat andSveta Gora.<p><b>A Short History of the Loreto Shrine</b><br>There is a pilgrims' shrinein Loreto, a beautiful little town on the Italian Adriatic coast.In Loreto there is a house of the Mother of God, the home of theHoly Virgin, and one of the most visited Mother Mary's placesof pilgrimage in Italy. The holy house, also called the Houseof Nazarene, had seven hundred years ago (in 1291 ) been movedfrom Palestine first to Trsat ( 1291-1294), and then to its presentlocation in Loreto. Under the dome of the Loreto basilica thereis the very holy shrine in which the archangel Gabriel announcedto Mary that she was to be the mother of Christ, the Redeemerof the World.<br>The shrine of Loreto hasa very long tradition. The year of 1291 was marked by a completefailure of the last crusade. The crusaders had finally been banishedfrom Palestine. The sources from those times say that the HolyAngels brought the Holy Mother's shrine from Palestine first toIllyria, which means that for a short time the holy shrine wassituated on the eastern coast of the Adriatic Sea. Only threeyears later it was moved to Loreto. This year is thus the yearof celebration of the 700th anniversary of the Holy Shrine beingmoved to Loreto. The festive year begins with December 10,1994and ends with the same date in 1995. On the basis of numerousstudies one can infer that the Holy House had been brought toLoreto by a ship departing the Holy Land around the time whenthe crusades had been brought to an end. It was the time whenthe crusaders most probably tried to take away from Palestineeverything they could, so as to protect the holy shrines fromwhat they believed was the danger of complete destruction anddevastation threatening from the side of the approaching Muslims.A document still exists dating in September 1294 which speaksabout Niceforos Angelios, the despot of Epirus, whose daughter'smarriage portion for the wedding with Carl · II, the kingof Naples, among other things included &quot;the holy stones broughtfrom the house of Our Lady and Mother of God&quot;.<br>From the document mentionedone can infer that the Holy House was not moved as such, but wasactually brought stone by stone and rebuilt on the new location.There are two facts speaking in favour of this statement. First,the stones are engraved with certain &quot;graffiti&quot; whichactually show the Jewish Christian origin. This means that itis highly probable that the stones had really been brought fromPalest