LA CROSSE -- The Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe will host the Relics of the Passion program throughout Divine Mercy weekend, Friday through Sunday, April 1 to 3, starting at 10 a.m. each day. The program will be at 10 a.m. and 3 p.m.
The event, designed to connect participants to the roots of their faith, is sponsored by the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in collaboration with the Apostolate for Holy Relics (AHR), an organization founded 10 years ago in Los Angeles.
The AHR is guardian for more than 1,200 relics organized into special collections, such as the eight rare relics that make up Relics of the Passion. The AHR utilizes its collections:
• To increase appreciation of the origins, spiritual, historical, and theological value of relics.
• To promote the devotional veneration of relics.
• To help preserve and safeguard relics for future generations.
It is very rare to see a group of related holy relics all in one place as is presented in this program. Collections such as this are generally seen only in Rome or the Holy Land and is something that most people only get to see once in a lifetime.
The relics are used to bring together a unique program consisting of music, meditations, and prayers commemorating the events relative to each relic and its significance in the Passion of Our Lord, Jesus Christ.
The documents for these relics have been reviewed and authenticated prior to the commencement of the first tour in 2007. Since then, the Relics of the Passion have been venerated in more than 12 archdioceses and nine dioceses throughout the world.
While this collection was in the Philippines, more than a million people came to see the rare relics. Tours for these relics are generally limited by the travel availability of the members of the Apostolate and are traditionally presented to the public only on a limited basis during the Lenten season.
However, because of the Holy Father’s declaration of the Extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy, the Apostolate for Holy Relics is pleased to be presenting this extraordinary collection with a customized program at area churches as part of a nationwide tour promoting God’s mercy.
Eight rare relics
The Relics of the Passion collection includes:
• A piece of the True Cross, which was discovered by St. Helena.
• A piece of the Holy Table (Mensae Coenae D.N.J.C.), from the room where the Last Supper took place.
• A piece of the Column of Flagellation.
• A piece of the Crown of Thorns.
• A replica of the Holy Nail, fashioned using filings from the true nails, making it a relic of a lesser class.
• A relic from the head of St. Longinus, the centurion who pierced the side of Christ.
• A picture of (the effigy of) the Veil of Veronica touched to the original with a Vatican seal attestingto the fact.
• A piece of the exterior wrapping for the Shroud of Turin (Sindonis D.N.J.C.).
Contact Andy Brannon (abrannon@guadalupe shrine.org) for more information.
The Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe is located at 5250 Justin Rd., La Crosse. More information is available at www.guadalupeshrine.org/relics-of-the-passion
Additional information regarding the Apostolate for Holy Relics can be found at www.relictour.com