Basilica Blog

St. Lawrence and the True Treasure of the Church

The feast of St. Lawrence is celebrated on August 10. As a deacon in the early Church in Rome, St.…

Basilica Insider: The Making of the Universal Call to Holiness

One of the largest relief sculptures in the world, The Universal Call to Holiness offers an awe-inspiring visualization of a…

The Meaning of the Transfiguration of the Lord

On August 6, we celebrate the Feast of the Transfiguration of the Lord. At the Basilica, the Transfiguration is depicted…

Honoring Our Lady of China at the Basilica

On August 3, 2002, the mosaic of Our Lady of China was dedicated. Residing in the west nave stair hall…

The Significance of the Dignities of the Basilica

One of the most significant events in the life of the National Shrine was when it was elevated to the rank of a minor basilica…

Faces of the Basilica: A Knight of Columbus Tells His Story

“Mary is my name. Mary is my sound. For Knights to God and country bound and all who hear my…

A Testament to God’s Deliverance: Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego

Even when king heated his furnace to seven times the usual temperature, none of the flames could touch Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego.

St. Camillus de Lellis: Demonstrating Christ’s Love to the Sick

As you go, make this proclamation: “The kingdom of heaven is at hand.” Cure the sick, raise the dead, cleanse…

Basilica Insider: The Art of Mary Stratton in America’s Catholic Church

The name Mary Chase Stratton may not be familiar to most American Catholics, but her indelible mark on sacred art…

Jonah: A Story of God’s Mercy

The story of Jonah is one with unusual characters: an unwilling witness, a giant fish, and an evil nation.

Celebrating the Anniversary of the Incarnation Dome

“For us men and for our salvation he came down from heaven, and by the Holy Spirit was incarnate of…

St. Kateri Tekakwitha: The “Lily of the Mohawks”

On July 14, we celebrate the Memorial of the Virgin Saint Kateri Tekakwitha, the first Indigenous American to be canonized…

St. Maria Goretti and the Power of Forgiveness

July 6 is the feast day of Maria Goretti, the patroness of purity, young women, and victims of assault. Though…

9 American Landmarks Portrayed in the Basilica’s Art

Did you know that the Basilica’s specifically portrays Mary’s guardianship of the United States? The west and east transept galleries…

The Unwavering Devotion of Saint Thomas the Apostle

On July 3, we celebrate the Feast of Saint Thomas the Apostle. Though he has been nicknamed “Doubting Thomas,” the moniker obscures his unwavering devotion to Christ…

Four American Saints Honored in the Basilica

The National Shrine reflects the ethnic and cultural diversity of the United States and the unity and universality of the Catholic Church…

Faces of the Basilica: An Interview with Sophia

When Sophia first visited the Basilica on an elementary school field trip, she had no idea how significant of a…

The Tradition of Our Mother of Perpetual Help

June 27 is the feast day of Our Mother of Perpetual Help, who is known for miracles and answers to…

The Motherly Protection of Our Lady of Ta’Pinu

Over 130 years ago on June 22, the Blessed Mother directed a woman on the island of Gozo to pray…

St. Thomas More: Integrity in Public Life

“What did Nature ever create milder, sweeter and happier than the genius of Thomas More?” – Erasmus On June 22,…

A Reflection on Christian Fatherhood

This year on June 21, we celebrate and honor the fathers who have raised us and cared for us. Fathers act…

The Immaculate Heart of Mary and the Inspiration of Mary’s Love

June 20 is the Memorial of the Immaculate Heart of the Blessed Virgin Mary. This Marian devotion focuses on the…

Basilica Reopens to the Public

The Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception will reopen on Monday, June 22, in accordance with Phase…

Ruth and Naomi: A Story of Redemption

The Book of Ruth is a beautiful example of how God can take a hopeless situation and turn it into something glorious.

The Angels of the Basilica

Scattered throughout countless chapels and oratories, the Basilica’s angels are integral to its sacred art…

June 12 Statements from Church Leadership Regarding Msgr. Rossi

Statement of Archbishop Wilton D. Gregory, Chair of the Board of Trustees, Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate…

Saint Barnabas, the “Son of Encouragement”

On June 11, we celebrate the Feast of St. Barnabas, who was an influential leader in the early church, bringing…

How Saint Boniface Brought the Gospel to Germany

“Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son…

Understanding the Doctrine of the Trinity

The first Sunday after Pentecost is known as the Solemnity of The Most Holy Trinity, focusing on the doctrine that…

Charles Lwanga: Faithful Unto Death

On June 3, we celebrate the Feast of St. Charles Lwanga, who remained steadfast in his faith in the face…

Basilica Insider: Catalan Vaulting in America’s Catholic Church

As we approach the Basilica’s centennial anniversary this September, we are highlighting the sacred art and architecture that makes “America’s…

Basilica to Join Pope Francis in Praying the Rosary Amidst the Coronavirus Pandemic

The Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, the largest Roman Catholic church in North America and the…

A Guide to Basilica Art: Bronze Sculptures of the Crypt Church

In today’s installment of our Guide to Basilica Art series, we highlight the bronze sculptures in the Crypt Level…

A Guide to the Miracles of Jesus in the Basilica

The beauty and mystery of the incarnation is that Christ was at once fully man and fully divine. During his earthly ministry…

What Happened at Pentecost?

The disciples experienced a series of dramatic highs and lows ­– they had seen Jesus die, come back to life, and ascend to heaven…

Why Do We Observe the Solemnity of the Ascension?

On May 24, we celebrate the Solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord. After Jesus’ resurrection, the time came…

The National Shrine’s Connection to Saint Joan of Arc

One hundred years ago, on May 16, 1920, Saint Joan of Arc was canonized. This woman’s legendary bravery has earned…

100th Anniversary of the Blessing of the Land

May 16, 2020 is the 100th anniversary of the blessing of the site of the future Basilica of the National…

Our Lady of Fatima: Protection and Guidance in Uncertain Times

On May 13, we celebrate the Feast of Our Lady of Fatima, looking to the Blessed Mother for peace and…

A Tribute to Mary, Mother of Mankind

On May 8, 1937, the day before Mother’s Day of that year, the National Shrine unveiled the Mary, Mother of…

Basilica “Lights it Blue” to Support Healthcare Workers

The Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception will be illuminated in blue each evening through Monday, May…

Victory Over Sin: Our Lady of Pompei

144 years ago, on May 8, 1876, the cornerstone was laid for a shrine dedicated to Our Lady of the…

A Tribute to 3 Mothers of the Church

As we celebrate Mother’s Day this month, we hope you’ll take a moment to reflect on the stories of three mother saints…

Basilica to Participate in Nationwide Renewal of Consecration to Mary, Mother of the Church

Basilica to Participate in Nationwide Renewal of Consecration to Mary, Mother of the Church Friday, May 1 at 3 p.m.…

Boldness in the Face of Corruption: St. Catherine of Siena’s Life and Legacy

“The world is lost through silence.” – St. Catherine of Siena On April 29, we celebrate the Feast of Saint…

“To Jesus Through Mary” – the Devotion to Mary, Queen of All Hearts

On April 28, we celebrate the Memorial of Saint Louis Marie Grignion de Montfort, Founder of the Society of Mary…

The Life and Gospel of Saint Mark the Evangelist

On April 25, we celebrate the Feast of Saint Mark the Evangelist. Although he was not a direct disciple of…

Discernment for Life’s Decisions: Our Mother of Good Counsel

Our Mother of Good Counsel is a Marian devotion that dates to the 15th century. The Basilica honors Mary under…

Download the Spring/Summer Edition of Mary’s Shrine

We invite you to download your copy of the Mary’s Shrine newsletter to receive the latest news and information about the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception…

The Music of the Easter Season: Adapting to the Challenges of Coronavirus

From the Basilica Music Department As ashes were distributed and the haunting strains of Gregorio Allegri’s Miserere mei, Deus filled the cavernous…

Soli Deo Gloria: The Majestic Organs of the Basilica

The organs of the Basilica bring dignity and majesty to worship, leading thousands in prayer and praise…

Victory and New Life: The Glorious Mysteries

As we enter the season of Easter, we reflect on the Glorious Mysteries during this celebration of Christ’s triumph over sin and death, rejoicing in the new life that we have been given…

Music and the Church: An Interview with Associate Director of Music Ben LaPrairie – Part II

Music plays a vital role in the liturgy at the Basilica. The musicians of the Basilica strive to create music…

A Guide to the Stained Glass of the Basilica

Did you know that the Basilica contains stained glass windows with nine different national monuments, including…

Music and the Church: An Interview with Associate Director of Music Ben LaPrairie

Music plays a vital role in the liturgy at the Basilica. The musicians of the Basilica strive to create music…

Join Us Virtually as We Observe Palm Sunday, Holy Week & Easter

We rejoice in the new life and joy that is ours through the Risen Christ as we look ahead to…

A Guide to the Sorrowful Mysteries at the Basilica

The Sorrowful Mysteries are traditionally prayed as part of the Rosary, providing the opportunity to meditate on…

Mary, the Handmaid of the Lord: the Solemnity of the Annunciation

On March 25, we celebrate the Solemnity of the Annunciation, when the angel announced to Mary that…

Turning to Christ, the Good Shepherd, in the Face of Uncertainty

When life becomes difficult, and circumstances grow uncertain, one thing remains the same yesterday, today, and forever…

Hope Amidst the Challenge of Coronavirus: A Reflection from the Rector of the Basilica

Dear Friend of Mary’s Shrine, I think you will agree with me when I state, we have never lived in…

St. Joseph at Mary’s Shrine: Guardian and Defender

March 19 is the Feast of St. Joseph, the earthly father of Jesus and the patron of the Universal Church.…

Basilica Adds Livestream of Devotions Following Livestream of Noon Mass for the Remaining Sundays of Lent

In an effort to provide for the faithful who rely on Mary’s Shrine as a place of prayer, peace and…

Basilica Closed to the Public Until Further Notice

Basilica Closed to the Public on March 17 at 12 Noon Until Further Notice Mass to be Livestreamed Sundays at…

The Real Story of Saint Patrick

“Christ within me, Christ behind me, Christ before me, Christ beside me, Christ beneath me, Christ above me.” – the…

A Guide to Basilica Art: Mosaics of the Great Upper Church

The Basilica is home to a massive collection of mosaic artistry, which is characteristic of its Byzantine-Romanesque style…

St. Louise de Marillac’s Unconventional Consecrated Life

March 15, 2020, marks the 360th anniversary of St. Louise de Marillac’s entrance into eternal life. Though her feast day…

Where to Find 7 Extraordinary Women of the Bible in the Basilica

International Women’s Day is March 8, celebrating the accomplishments of women around the world…

Joy in the Face of Suffering: Saints Perpetua and Felicity

On March 7, we observe the Feast of Saints Perpetua and Felicity, martyrs of the early church in Carthage. In…

Saint Katharine Drexel’s Heart for Racial Justice

On March 3, we celebrate the Feast of Saint Katharine Drexel, the second American-born saint to be canonized. “Mother” Katharine,…

The 2020 Lenten Reflection Series Schedule

The 40 days of Lent provide a time to reflect on the solemnity of the Lord’s sacrifice and prepare our…

Liturgy at the Basilica: An Inside Look – Part II

At Mary’s Shrine, pilgrims and visitors can encounter Christ through His Blessed Mother, the Word, the Sacraments, and Devotions. What…

Preparing Our Hearts for Lent this Ash Wednesday

Ash Wednesday marks the beginning of the Lenten season, a 40-day period of repentance and renewal leading up to Easter…

What is the Feast of the Chair of Saint Peter?

“Grant, we pray, almighty God,  that no tempests may disturb us, for you have set us fast on the rock…

A Conversation with Basilica Organist Andrew Vu

The musicians of the Basilica strive to transform hearts and minds through the power and beauty of sacred music in…

Liturgy at the Basilica: An Inside Look

At Mary’s Shrine, pilgrims and visitors can encounter Christ through His Blessed Mother, the Word, the Sacraments, and Devotions. What…

A Guide to the Luminous Mysteries at the Basilica

Instituted by Pope John Paul II in 2002 in his apostolic letter Rosarium Virginis Mariae, the Luminous Mysteries…

Honoring Our Lady of Lourdes in the Basilica

On February 11, we celebrate the Feast of Our Lady of Lourdes. The Basilica honors the Blessed Mother under this…

Celebrating Josephine Bakhita’s Story of Hope

On February 8, we celebrate the Feast of Saint Josephine Bakhita, the patroness of Sudan and victims of human trafficking.…

A Moment in History: the Papal Tiara at the Basilica

Fifty-two years ago, on February 6, 1968, Pope Paul VI’s coronation tiara was presented to the National Shrine by Archbishop…

What Does the Bible Say about Love?

If I speak in human and angelic tongues but do not have love, I am a resounding gong or a…

Why We Celebrate the Feast of the Presentation of the Lord

“God enters the temple not as a powerful ruler but as a little child in his Mother’s arms. The King…

Honoring Saint Brigid, Patroness of Ireland, in the Basilica

On February 1, we celebrate the Feast of Saint Brigid of Ireland, dubbed a “fiery sunbeam of love” by historian…

Saint John Bosco’s Heart for Orphans

On January 31, we celebrate the Feast of Saint John Bosco, whose heart for orphans inspired the founding of the…

The Man Who Shaped 700 Years of Catholic Doctrine: Saint Thomas Aquinas

But sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts. Always be ready to give an explanation to anyone who asks you…

What Do You Know about the Conversion of Saint Paul the Apostle?

On January 25, we celebrate the Feast of the Conversion of Saint Paul the Apostle. His radical transformation is demonstrative…

What is the National Prayer Vigil for Life?

“I am thankful for the thousands that gather at the National Shrine, and the many thousands that march for life…

Our Lady of Hope: Sustaining Us in Times of Trouble

The Tradition of Our Lady of Hope Tradition holds that during the Franco-Prussian War, Mary appeared to six children on…

The Day of Prayer for the Legal Protection of Unborn Children – a Reflection

For it was you who formed my inward parts; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you,…

The Significance of the Baptism of the Lord

In the liturgical calendar, the Feast of the Baptism of the Lord signifies the end of the Christmas season. The…

Who Was the First American to Be Canonized as a Saint?

On January 4, we celebrate the Feast of Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton. Elizabeth Ann Seton was the ​first American​ to…

What the Gifts of the Magi Tell Us about Jesus

Observed January 6, Epiphany celebrates the Magi’s journey to worship Jesus. It represents the coming of Jesus to all –…

Where to Find Mary Portrayed as the Mother of God in the Basilica

On January 1, we celebrate the Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God, honoring Mary’s role as the Mother of God. This day also gives us the opportunity to reflect upon the mystery of the incarnation…

Celebrating a New Year and God’s Renewal

“Christian hope is based on faith in God who always creates newness in the life of mankind.” – Pope Francis…

Honoring the Holy Family at the Basilica

On December 29, we observe the Feast of the Holy Family, honoring Mary, Joseph, and Jesus, and seek to imitate…

Who was “the disciple Jesus loved”?

For this is the message you have heard from the beginning: we should love one another.  – 1 John 3:11…

Who was the first martyr for Christ?

On December 26, we honor Saint Stephen, who was the first person to be martyred for Christ. Living in the first community of Christians in Jerusalem…

The Tradition of the Blessing of the Bambinelli

As we prepare for Christmas at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, we have many special…

Who Was the Father of the “Catholic Press”?

On December 21, we celebrate the Feast of Saint Peter Canisius, who was a stabilizing force for the Catholic Church…

Christmas in D.C. – The National Shrine’s Christmas Dinner Tradition

For over 40 years, the Basilica has served thousands in the community around the nation’s capital with a free Christmas…

Honoring Our Lady of Guadalupe in the Basilica

On December 12, we celebrate the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe. The National Shrine honors the Blessed Mother…

The Music of Christmas at the National Shrine

As Christmas approaches, Dr. Peter Latona, Director of Music for the Basilica, reflects on the music of Christmas…

St. Lucy: Reflecting Christ’s Light as We Approach the Christmas Season

Though her story is tragic, the legacy of St. Lucy lives on in a celebration of hope and light…

Celebrating the Basilica’s Patronal Feast: The Immaculate Conception

Observed this year on December 9, the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception is the patronal feast day of the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception and of our nation…

A Guide to Advent and Christmas at the Basilica

Advent and Christmas are filled with anticipation and joy as we look forward to and commemorate the birth of Christ…

Who Was the First Disciple to Be Called by Jesus?

On November 30, we observe the Feast of St. Andrew the Apostle, the first disciple to be called by Jesus…

The Story Behind the Miraculous Medal

On November 27 and 28, we celebrate the gift of the Miraculous Medal, and honor Saint Catherine Labouré, who first…

Why We Celebrate the Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe

As waves of nationalism and secularism were on the rise across the globe, Pope Pius XI instituted the Solemnity of Christ the King in…

Celebrating the 60th Anniversary of the Dedication of the National Shrine

60 years ago, on November 20, 1959, the National Shrine was dedicated, marking a historic moment in America’s Catholic history.

Grateful to God: The Priests of the Basilica Share What They Are Thankful for

As we approach the Thanksgiving holiday, the clergy of the Basilica share what they are most thankful for…

A Thanksgiving Reflection on Faith and Gratitude

With Thanksgiving approaching this month, we would like to take a moment to reflect on the significance of gratitude in the Christian faith…

Who Was the Mother of Women’s Missions?

On November 13, we celebrate the Feast of Saint Frances Xavier Cabrini, the mother of women’s missions. From an early age…

Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary: Preparing to Become the Mother of God

According to tradition, Our Lady was solemnly consecrated to God as an infant in the temple of the Lord…

Reflecting on Veterans Day and the Patron Saint of Soldiers

Because of his love of peace, St. Martin of Tours’ feast day has traditionally been used as a day to sign peace treaties…

Celebrating the Feast of Saint Elizabeth

On November 5, we celebrate the Feast of Saint Elizabeth, the mother of John the Baptist. Saint Elizabeth was also…

Saint Charles Borromeo: a “Light of Charity”

On November 4, we celebrate the Feast of Saint Charles of Borromeo, who is remembered for his humanitarian and reform efforts…

A Guide to November Events at the Basilica

From a special concert by the Choir of the Basilica on All Souls Day to the first-ever Mass of the Americas, November is an eventful month…

Remembering the Faithful Departed: All Saints Day and All Souls Day at the Basilica

All Saints Day and All Souls Day provide us with the opportunity to reflect on the faithful who have gone before us…

Honoring the Legacy of Saint John Paul II

On October 22, we celebrate the Feast of Saint John Paul II. Saint John Paul II was the first reigning Pope to visit the Shrine, and was beloved for…

St. Luke the Evangelist: Sharing the Powerful Truth of the Gospel

“Since many have undertaken to compile a narrative of the events that have been fulfilled among us, just as those…

Three Remarkable Characteristics of Saint Teresa of Ávila

On October 15, we celebrate the Feast of Saint Teresa of Jesus, more commonly known as Saint Teresa of Ávila…

From the U.S. Air Force to America’s Catholic Church: A Conversation with Dee Steel

How do you get from the United States Air Force Academy to the Basilica? Today, Dee Steel tells us about…

5 Hidden Gems of the Basilica: A Guide for Returning Visitors

The Basilica is a treasure trove of history, art, and architecture. Visitors might be familiar with…

Honoring Our Lady of the Rosary in the Basilica

Every October, we honor Our Lady of the Rosary, celebrating her Feast on October 7. This celebration…

What We Know about the Life of St. Francis of Assisi

On October 4, we celebrate the Feast of St. Francis of Assisi, one of the Catholic Church’s most venerated…

A Guide for the First-Time Visitor to the Basilica

As a first-time visitor to the National Shrine, deciding what to see can be overwhelming…

Saint Thérèse of Lisieux – a “Little Flower” in God’s Garden

On October 1, we celebrate the Feast of Saint Thérѐse of Lisieux, who is beloved for her writings on …

On This Day in History: The Laying of the National Shrine’s Foundation Stone

Today is a momentous day in the history of the National Shrine, especially as we prepare to commemorate…

The Feast of Saint Matthew: Apostle & Evangelist

Jesus shocked the religious teachers of his day in many ways; perhaps one of the most prominent examples was …

The Uniqueness of the Basilica as a Pilgrimage Destination

Reverend Monsignor Vito A. Buonanno tells us what he believes makes the Basilica unique as a place…

Exhibit Opens at the Basilica: “The United States and the Holy See: A Worldwide Force for Good”

A new exhibit at the Basilica highlights the 35th anniversary of formal diplomatic relations between…

Experiencing the Beauty of the Basilica’s Sacred Music: A Conversation with Director of Music Peter Latona

Today, Dr. Latona takes readers behind the scenes, sharing his intent for how audiences experience…

Mary, Our Lady of Sorrows: An Example of Perseverance through Suffering

The feast day of Our Lady of Sorrows is observed on September 15. The occasion is a time for reflection…

A Pilgrimage Primer: Your Most Essential Questions, Answered

Today, Reverend Monsignor Vito A. Buonanno answers some essential questions about pilgrimages…

Download the Latest Issue of Mary’s Shrine

We invite you to download your copy of the Mary’s Shrine Newsletter to receive the latest news about the Basilica!

What Does it Mean to Be a Catholic Musician? A Conversation with Director of Music Peter Latona

Today, Dr. Latona takes readers behind the scenes, sharing what it means to be a Catholic musician…

Why Come on Pilgrimage to the Basilica?

To better understand pilgrimages and what makes the Basilica unique as a place of pilgrimage…

What Is It Like to Compose for the Basilica? A Conversation with Director of Music Peter Latona

Today, Dr. Latona takes us behind the scenes, sharing his experiences as a composer at the Basilica, the largest Catholic Church in North America…

Unafraid to Stand for Christ: Celebrating St. Joseph of Arimathea

August 31 marks the feast day of Saint Joseph of Arimathea, who is known for burying Jesus’ body after the…

Sacred Music as Vocation: A Conversation with Director of Music Peter Latona

The musicians of the Basilica strive to transform hearts and minds through the power and beauty of sacred music…

The Basilica’s Autumn Pilgrimage Schedule

During the autumn months, there are a variety of annual pilgrimages at the Basilica…

Four Things You Should Know about the Life of Saint Augustine

As students begin a new school year, we would like to honor the impact of Saint Augustine…

St. Monica: The Patron Saint of Mothers

Born in the 4th century, St. Monica is recognized as the patron saint of mothers…

Honoring Our Lady of Hungary and Saint Stephen

This month, we celebrate the Feast Day of Saint Stephen and the dedication of the Our Lady of Hungary Chapel…

Remembering the Sacrifice of Auschwitz Martyr Saint Maximilian Kolbe

In the face of Nazi brutality at Auschwitz, Saint Maximilian Kolbe bravely gave up his life for…

Meet Legend Thurman: a Daughter of the Shrine

Legend Alexandra Thurman has served for over five years as a volunteer in various capacities at the Basilica. Though she…

St. Clare of Assisi’s Dedication to Vocation

Rejoice always. Pray without ceasing. In all circumstances give thanks, for this is the will of God for you in…

Saint Dominic: “Armed with a Prayer, not a Sword”

As the Basilica highlights the role of spiritual education in the lives and legacies of the saints this month, on…

St. John Vianney: A Testament to God’s Strength in Weakness

On August 4, we celebrate the Feast Day of Saint John Vianney, who became a devoted servant for Christ and…

Who Was Saint Alphonsus Liguori?

With the arrival of a new school year, this month at the Basilica we’d like to focus on the legacies…

“A Knight for the Glory of God” – Saint Ignatius of Loyola

On July 31, we honor the life and legacy of Saint Ignatius of Loyola. Ignatius was born in Spain as…

The Life of St. Martha and Drawing Closer to Jesus

With the Feast Day of St. Martha on July 29, we reflect on St. Martha’s role in Jesus’ ministry. Carved…

Celebrating Saint James the Apostle: the Son of Thunder

On July 25, we honor the Feast Day of the apostle Saint James the Greater. A passionate evangelist and devoted…

The Love and Faith of the Grandparents of Jesus: St. Anne and St. Joachim

On July 26, the Feast Day of St. Anne and St. Joachim, we honor the lives of Mary’s parents, the…

Celebrating the 56th Anniversary of the Installation of the Knights Tower Carillon

Nearly 60 years ago, the Basilica welcomed a new architectural addition: the Knights Tower, gifted by the…

What Saint Mary Magdalene Teaches Us about Redemption and Devotion

On July 22, we celebrate the Feast Day of Mary Magdalene. Mentioned fourteen times in the gospels, St. Mary was…

Caring for the Basilica: Meet the Sister Sacristans

Since 1986, the Sisters Servants of Mary Immaculate have been serving the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate…

Reflections on Our Lady of Mount Carmel

On July 16, we celebrate the Feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel and reflect on the blessing of the…

Explore National Shrine Gifts and Books with Amy Maloney

Wherever people enter the Basilica, they are greeted by the beauty and splendor of the Catholic faith, not only in…

Testaments to Loving Care: Our Lady of La Vang & Our Lady of Guadalupe

Today we highlight two Marian devotions– Our Lady of La Vang and Our Lady of Guadalupe – that stand in…

The Basilica Summer Organ Recital Series: An Introduction

For almost a century, the magnificent sound of the pipe organ has filled the sanctuaries of the Basilica. From the first…

The Remarkable History of America’s Catholic Church

The United States has long been considered the great melting pot, where people from many diverse lands make their home.…

Reflecting Upon the Legacy of St. Junípero Serra

As we enter the month of July, we celebrate the different cultures, peoples, and stories that are the fabric of the Catholic faith in…

Uniting the World: Our Lady of the Rosary & Our Lady Queen of Missions

While the Basilica commemorates the Blessed Mother under her title of Immaculate Conception as patroness of the United States, it also…

Remembering St. Peter and St. Paul: Instruments of Divine Purpose

St. Peter and St. Paul: two apostles. Two leaders. Two flawed individuals whom God chose and transformed for the use…

An Exhortation to Prayer: The Global Rosary Relay

On the Solemnity of the Most Sacred Heart, Friday, June 28, also designated as World Priest Day, the Basilica of…

Reflections upon the Life and Legacy of John the Baptist

With the Solemnity of the Nativity of St. John the Baptist on June 24, we reflect upon the life and…

2 Marian Devotions at the Basilica: The Immaculate Heart of Mary & The Miraculous Medal

Two corresponding Marian devotions – the Immaculate Heart of Mary and the Miraculous Medal – are represented in chapels at…

Why do nearly one million people visit the Basilica each year?

The Basilica hosts nearly one million people from across the globe each year. Basilica Docent Tom Wong shares his insight into…

The Five Domes of the Basilica and the Story They Tell

The Feast of the Most Holy Trinity is approaching – a special day dedicated to reflecting upon the sacred beauty…

The Trinity Dome and the Feast of the Blessed Trinity

With the Feast of the Most Holy Trinity approaching, we’d like to take a moment to reflect on this Holy…

Celebrating Mary as Mother of the Church

June 10 marks this year’s celebration of the memorial of Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of the Church. In 1964, at…

Mary and Elizabeth’s Joy: The Feast of the Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Celebrated on May 31, the Feast of the Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary commemorates the Virgin Mary’s visit to…

An Inside Look at the Basilica with Docent Tom Wong

A docent – a volunteer guiding a group or individual as they experience the sights, sounds, and heart of the…

An Exclusive Interview with the National Symphony Orchestra

For the first time in almost twenty years, the National Symphony Orchestra will perform a free concert in the Great…

The Memorial Mass: A Recognition of Love and Service

Commemorated to honor the men and women who died in military service for the United States, Memorial Day…

A Week in Rome with the Choir of the Basilica

The Choir of the Basilica performed this month in Rome, traveling to the Eternal City to honor the 35th anniversary of formal diplomatic relations between…

3 Marian Prayers of Protection & Hope

Dedicated to and named after the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception is…

Prayer, Peace, and Penance: The Message of Our Lady of Fatima

On May 13, we celebrate the Feast Day of Our Lady of Fatima. According to tradition, the Virgin Mary appeared…

The Church’s Great Mothers: 4 Saints Who Were Devoted Mothers

Behind every generation of devoted servants for Christ there is a generation of devoted mothers. Faithful mothers teach their children…

A Mother’s Day Tribute: Mary, Mother of God, as Depicted in the Basilica

As we celebrate mothers this month, it is fitting to reflect on the most important mother in history, Mary. Throughout…

In Celebration of Mothers: A Look at Faithful Mothers of the Bible

During the month of May, we honor and celebrate our mothers. As the guardians of future generations, they are instrumental…

Watch: Together with Notre-Dame de Paris: A Benefit Concert at the Basilica

On April 26, 2019, over 2,000 people attended “Together with Notre-Dame de Paris: A Benefit Concert at the Basilica.” Organized…

Glorifying God in Our Labor: Celebrating the Feast of St. Joseph the Worker

St. Joseph is present in many places throughout the Basilica. In the East Apse of the Great Upper Church, he…

Lessons from the Life of Saint Catherine of Siena: Laywoman and Activist

On April 29, we celebrate the Feast Day of Saint Catherine of Siena. Though Saint Catherine of Siena came from…

Press Conference with Notre Dame Organist Johann Vexo

Thursday, April 25 at 10 a.m. in the Basilica’s Great Upper Church in advance of Notre Dame Benefit Concert at…

The Significance of Divine Mercy Sunday

As the faithful prepare to celebrate Divine Mercy Sunday, it is important to review the meaning and historical significance of…

Reflecting on the Seven Last Words of Christ

As we reflect on Christ’s sacrifice this Good Friday, the Seven Last Words give us powerful insight into His thoughts…

Bells of the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception Will Toll at 6:43 PM

In solidarity with our friends at Notre Dame in Paris, and seeking the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary for…

The Choral Music of Holy Week

From the somber silence experienced at the beginning of the Good Friday Liturgy, to the thunderous organ fanfare and ringing…

The Basilica Facilitates Donations in Solidarity with the Cathedral of Notre Dame

“The Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, in solidarity with the Cathedral of Notre Dame in Paris,…

Statement by Monsignor Walter R. Rossi, Rector of the Basilica, Regarding the Notre Dame Cathedral Fire

“Today we share our grief and prayers with those who worship at the Cathedral of Notre Dame in Paris, the…

Good Friday at the Basilica: Exposition of the Relics of the Christ’s Passion

The relics of the passion, death, and burial of Our Lord Jesus Christ are the first relics of the Church…

A Moment in Basilica History: First Mass Celebrated in the Crypt Church 95 Years Ago

Every year, millions of people from all over the world visit the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate…

A Virtual Welcome from the Rector of the Basilica

It gives me great pleasure as Rector to welcome you “virtually” to the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception…

Palm Sunday, Holy Week & Easter at the Basilica

The Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, the largest Catholic Church in the United States and one…

Basilica to Observe “24 Hours for the Lord”

In observance of “24 Hours for the Lord,” the Lenten initiative launched by Pope Francis, the Basilica of the National…

Lenten Reflections at the National Shrine

The season of Lent is a time to reflect on the solemnity of the Lord’s sacrifice and prepare our hearts…

The Trinity Dome Dedication

On December 8, 2017, the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception and the patronal feast day of the National Shrine and…

Dedication of Rosary Walk and Garden

On September 23, 2017, a day of pilgrimage for more than 2,000 of the faithful during the centennial year commemorating…

Pope Francis’s Visit to the National Shrine

A Picture Perfect Day Pope Francis arrived at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception on September…

Jubilee Celebration

On November 20, 2009, the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception celebrated the 50th Anniversary of its…

Pope Benedict XVI Visits the Basilica

People of all ages, states, and walks of life from across America flocked to the nation’s patronal church awaiting the…

Pope John Paul II Visits the Basilica

Excerpt from the book: America’s Church: The Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception Early on the morning…