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Fr. Anthony Gramlich, MIC, Welcomes You!

Dear Friends,
The priests and brothers of the Congregation of Marians of the Immaculate Conception of the Most Blessed Virgin Mary have resided on Eden Hill in Stockbridge, MA, since June 1944. Father Walter Pelczynski, MIC, with the assistance of local clergy and friends of the Marian community, initially purchased 50 of the 370 acres that constituted the "Eden Hill" estate, in November, 1943. The house was to serve as the novitiate (a house for the training of candidates) for the newly forming Saint Stanislaus Kostka province. An image of the "The Divine Mercy" was enshrined in one of the small chapels where the members of the community daily prayed the perpetual novena to The Divine Mercy for our Benefactors and friends and where votive candles constantly burned at the request of the latter.

Pilgrims began to arrive the very next spring to celebrate the Feast of The Divine Mercy, which the Lord requested through Sister Maria Faustina to be observed on the first Sunday after Easter. They also came by busloads for other celebrations or simply to visit. By the end of World War II, pilgrims in growing numbers came to offer thanksgiving for graces received through the Divine Mercy message and devotion. They urged the Marians to build a shrine to Jesus, The Divine Mercy, as a votive of thanks. The Fathers decided to accede to the requests since there was also a need for a larger chapel to accommodate a growing community.

The construction of the present Shrine began in 1950 and was completed and solemnly dedicated in 1960. In 1996, the United States Catholic Bishops Conference declared it a National Shrine in accord with Church law. In the course of history, the National Shrine has been the destination of thousands of pilgrims, even from around the world. They have found it to be a place of rest and renewal in a setting of natural beauty. They experienced peace and spiritual uplifting in the beautifully appointed sanctuary. If you have visited here you know what I am describing is true.

As in the days of the first Fathers who brought us here, we continue to need your spiritual and financial help towards the maintenance of this special place of prayer and repose. Please consider a generous gift to the National Shrine so that the message of The Divine Mercy may continue to reach and comfort humanity.

Peace,
Fr. Anthony Gramlich, MIC
Shrine Rector

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