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 published: 2006-10-06

Like a natural Shrine…with a shingle from the Original Shrine

A wayside shrine consecrated to the Blessed Mother of Schoenstatt in Villa General Belgrano, Cordoba


La ermita en Villa General Belgrano, „un Santuario natural“

The wayside Shrine in Villa General Belgrano, a „natural Shrine“

Der kleine Bildstock in Villa General Belgrano, ein „Natur-Heiligtum“


Bendición de la ermita

Blessing of the wayside shrine

Segnung des Bildstocks


Compromiso misionero

Commissioning of new missionaries

Missionarische Verpflichtung


Un lugar santo…

A holy place…

Ein heiliger Ort…

Fotos: Alcocer © 2006




ARGENTINA, Jaime and Elisa Alcoer. The Blessed Mother is already with us! There is great joy in Villa General Belgrano, where the Wayside Shrine consecrated to the Blessed Mother of Schoenstatt was blessed on Friday, September 29th, and this place was inaugurated as a place for meditation and prayer.

The place especially chosen by the Blessed Mother, is very beautiful, it looks like a Nature Shrine, with many trees, the singing of birds, at the edge of a stream and as a background there is the beautiful garden of the Sacred Heart School, with a large statue of Jesus and a chapel with perpetual adoration. It is an ideal place, which was very appropriately named: "Mary’s Corner"

Inside the wayside shrine, close to the majolica with the picture of the Blessed Mother a slate from the roof of the Original Shrine, that had been given to them by Father Nicolás Dreiling, who is now in Vallendar, Germany, and who is the brother of the Pastor, who are also the brothers of two Sisters of Mary. There is also a Unity Cross that was donated by the Sandrone family, whose granddaughter, entered as a postulant in Florencio Varel two months ago.

Hardcore Schoenstatt members

A visit from the Sandrone couple in January gave impetus to the building of a wayside shrine in Villa General Belgran. Los Sandrones, Schoenstatters to the "bone", visited them again, some weeks before the blessing. They work very hard for the Campaign, they are from Rio III. Several years ago, they were supposed to take the Auxiliary to the Military Factory in Rio III on the day of the mysterious explosion there that caused many deaths. They never found out from whom the telephone call came that urged them not to go... They have inaugurated some 40 wayside shrines, and they are in charge of many towns. When they visited the wayside while it was under construction they promised the leaders that they would donate the Unity Cross to be placed in the front, On September 29th they fulfilled their promise to come for the blessing and they brought the Unity Cross.

Cooperation with the local institutions

To the great joy of the Schoenstatt Family, they had the total support of the brothers of the Sacred Heart School, who loaned them the audio equipment and the chairs for the ceremony on September 29th, Feast of Saint Michael the Archangel. They chose this date without knowing that this was the feast day of the patron of the chapel where the first Shrine was made. The Director of the school proposed that the blessing be at 11:00 a.m. so that several grades could participate in the ceremony. It was a joy for the Campaign, because they wanted to start some little missionaries at that place.

"It is incredible how the Blessed Mother prepared the way", commented Elisa Lasalle. They asked the electric company to place a light post towards the Wayside Shrine and one week before the blessing it was ready, they also asked the Transit Department to close the street during the ceremony, and it was also done. On Monday, the 18th, the Alcocers were interviewed in front of the wayside shrine by the local TV channel, and the surrounding area was also filmed. This interview was aired several times a day an even on the next day. This was done for publicity. It was also aired on the FM radio, and it was announced at all the Masses.

A holy place

The communicated with Mirta Audisio, a missionary from Villa Rumipal , so that she could notify the missionaries from that area and from Villa del Dique, they also extended an invitation to more people so that could learn about the Schoenstatt Movement "first hand".

The long awaited day arrived! The blessing was imparted by Father Juan Jose Riba. Advisor of the National Rosary Campaign and Vice-postulator of the cause of canonization of John Pozzobon, along with the local Pastor, Father Venancio Dreiling, who knew Father Kentenich personally.

More thatn100 people attended with families from de la Villa and some students from the Sacred Heart School. The ceremony was very moving; on a glorious day, with a completely blue sky, the girls who were to be commissioned as missionaries went for water from the stream that runs along the edge, Father blessed it while "Mary of Schoenstatt" was sung.

After a beautiful and brief homily, Father Juan Jose said: Now we will experience the Blessing of the Wayside Shrine of the Blessed Mother in this beautiful place of Villa General Belgrano, and he added: "Take off you sandals because the ground on which you are standing is holy", the Lord said to Moses. The Schoenstatt Family already feels that this little piece of land is a holy place for them since they want to erect a sign , that will mark this place.

Translation: Celina Garza, Harlingen, TX, USA

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