THE SHRINE OF OUR LADY OF MERCY
Archdiocese of Vilnius
It is one of the symbol of Vilnius. A gate was one of the first five Vilnius gates erected together with the city wall. The name “Aušros” (“of the dawn”) accompanied the spread of the cult of the Mother of God, and is probably associated with image of Mary as the “dawn star”. The painting of the Mother of Mercy (the Gate of Dawn) is known to many Catholics around the world. The painting is dated by the 1st quarter of the 17th cent. It is painted in the Renaissance style. The Virgin Mary is depicted without Child, with her head tilted to the right, her hands are crossed over her chest, her eyes are half-closed, with a soft and graceful silhouette. In 1626, after the Carmelite friars had settled there, a wooden chapel was built over the gate and the painting was put inside. After a fire at the shrine, a brick chapel was erected in 1713-1715. The image was solemnly crowned in 1927. In 1993 Pope John Paul II prayed at the shrine of the Mother of Divine Mercy during his pilgrimage to Lithuania. It was at this shrine on 26th, 27th and 28th April 1935, during the celebration of the Redemption Jubilee triduum, where the image of Divine Mercy was displayed and preached for the first time. Sr. Faustina took part in those events and their spiritual fruits were revealed to her. (See her Diary 417-420). The shrine is connected through an interior corridor with St. Theresa’s Church, where most of the Masses are celebrated and where the majority of confessionals are located.
Aušros Vartų g. 14, Vilnius, Lituania