Each year, more and more pilgrims seek the peace and reflection of the National Shrine of Our Lady of Good Help in Champion. The site where the Blessed Mother appeared to a young Belgian immigrant in 1859 is the only church-approved Marian Shrine in the United States and was designated as a National Shrine in 2016.
As more people visit the Shrine, a new building, the Prayer & Events Center, will be added as part of the Shrine’s long-range plan to be able to welcome more visitors. Construction is expected to be complete in spring 2019.
“As we approach the 160th anniversary of the Apparition, we continue to see tremendous growth in the number of visitors as word-of-mouth and media coverage creates greater awareness throughout the U.S. and around the world,” said Don Warden, Champion Shrine chief operations office.
The Prayer & Events Center is designed with flexibility in mind. It will seat up to 1,200 people for Mass or conference gatherings with the ability to divide the main hall into smaller gathering spaces. The Center will also have a pilgrimage coordination area, first-aid station and a kitchenette, for those groups that have meals catered to the Shrine.
The National Shrine of Our Lady of Good Help is located at 4047 Chapel Drive in Champion. It is open daily, 7 am – 7 pm. For more information visit ShrineOfOurLadyOfGoodHelp.com.