Jasna Gora in Czestochowa
Jasna Gora is one of the main destinations for pilgrims in the contemporary Christian world. The Pauline Fathers were summoned to Jasna Gora in 1382 by Prince Ladislaus of Oppeln. The miraculous painting of the Virgin Mary owned by the monastery has been drawing great numbers thousands of pilgrims since the 15 century, initially from other regions of Poland and later also from other European countries and from the rest of the world.
The coronation of the miraculous image of the Virgin Mary with papal crowns in 1717 ultimately established the exceptional position of Jasna Gora among the world’s most important sanctuaries. About 50 pilgrimage trails lead to Czestochowa, crossing the whole country, spanning from a couple to several hundred kilometers in length. Every year more than 200 groups (a total of 165,000 people) reach the city on foot, with visitor numbers soaring during the main Cult of Mary feasts:
-May 3 Feast of Our Lady, Queen of Poland
-July 16 Our Lady of Mount Carmel
-August 15 Assumption
-August 26 Feast of Our Lady of Czestochowa
-December 8 Feast of the Birth of Mary
-September 12 Feast of the Most Holy Name of Mary
With the growing popularity of the pilgrim movement and its rich tradition extending back over six centuries, the foot pilgrimages to Jasna Gora have become a unique religious and social phenomenon on a global scale. The spontaneity of that movement bears witness to the exceptional character of Jasna Gora as a place where truth is cultivated, together with the spiritual and patriotic values of the Polish nation. Pilgrimages bring together people from all professions, social groups, communities and environments, from all the parishes of Poland. As well as a religious centre of extreme significance, the monastic complex of Jasna Gora is also an important historical monument and a remarkable piece of architecture. Special exhibitions feature elements from its rich collection of masterpieces.