February 2, 2013

The Madonna di Viggiano to Visit Toronto, Canada

The Madonna di Viggiano procession
Photo courtesy of Wikipedia
The Madonna di Viggiano, a widely venerated relic in Basilicata will be coming to North America in June.

Each Spring the people of Viggiano move the statue of this version of the "Black Madonna" from the town of Viggiano to a hilltop and then back down again in the Fall bringing many visitors. Scenes of the 2012 procession can be seen on YouTube.

Initial plans for the North American visit have the statue arriving in Toronto, Canada. Events will be held from June 22nd to July 2nd in the Church of the Immaculate Conception. On Sunday, June 23rd a special Mass will be held followed by a procession and grand feast.

There are over 90,000 people of Lucanian origin in Southern Ontario. This is the first visit of the statue to Canada and the idea is to create an annual event, and perhaps a permanent statue in Woodbridge.