Bolivia Opens a New Shrine to Our Lady of the Nativity

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Built-in the year 1800, the temple had already been declared a historical monument by the department of La Paz.

Newsroom (06/09/2021 19:10 PM, Gaudium Press) The Church of Our Lady of the Nativity of Chirca, located in Chulumani, 130 kilometers from the Bolivian city of La Paz, has been elevated to Sanctuary by Archbishop Percy Galvan of the city. The temple had already been declared a historical monument by the department of La Paz.

Imitating the example of Our Lady

During the celebration of a religious ceremony with a Holy Mass, presided over by Monsignor Galván in the expanse of the temple, the decree of canonical erection of the Shrine of Our Lady of the Nativity of Chirca was read, naming Father Daniel Ríos as the first rector.

In his homily, Bishop Galván exhorted the faithful to imitate the example of Our Lady to transform our lives through five verbs: to listen as Mary did at the Annunciation; to serve as she did when visiting her cousin Saint Elizabeth; to show Jesus as his Mother did at the Wedding Feast at Cana; to pray and teach children so that they can talk to God.

History of the Shrine of Our Lady of the Nativity

The history of the construction of this temple originates in the year 1695, when a traveler thirsty for water approached a pond in the region. At the same moment, a white dove landed on a cherry tree. As he bent down to get some water, the traveler could see the reflection of a shining woman, in whom he recognized Our Lady.

In 1800, it was decided that a church should be built in honor of Our Lady of the Nativity, considered the patron saint of the region. Since then, every year thousands of faithful pilgrims gather at the temple on August 30, feast of the Nativity of Our Lady (patroness of the region), and also on September 8, Chirca’s birthday. (EPC)

Compiled by Camille Mittermeier

 

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