On Sunday, March 15, 2020 at the conclusion of his first live-streamed Mass following the suspension of public Masses, Archbishop Vigneron entrusted the Archdiocese to the care and protection of the Blessed Virgin Mary. He also promised to build a grotto dedicated to Our Lady of Lourdes (pictured above) in gratitude and thanksgiving for her healing power. In early 2021, the Archdiocese of Detroit reached out to the Catholic Foundation to create the Cathedral Grotto Fund.
“The grotto will stand as a visible tribute to God’s mercy and love showered on us during this pandemic through the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Throughout this tumultuous time, not only has Our Lady obtained for us the grace of her Son’s protection, but we have also been blessed to be able to share his Good News in both ordinary and extraordinary ways,” Archbishop Vigneron said.
“The grotto will stand as a visible tribute to God’s mercy and love showered on us during this pandemic through the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary.” -Archbishop Allen Vigneron
The grotto, to be located on the grounds of the Cathedral of the Most Blessed Sacrament, will unite, enlighten, and inspire. “Priests, religious, and laity have been moved to respond generously to our mission of inspiring hope in God’s abundant and overwhelming grace during these troubled times,” said the Archbishop.
A liturgical space design team is working to create a grotto that will serve as a welcoming devotional and gathering space for all, and will serve as a “shallow entry point” for the neighborhood, residents, and visitors.
The grotto dedicated to our Lady of Lourdes is a bold project and the entire community is invited to participate. Gifts will be gratefully received and used for the creation and care of the grotto. As a corporal act of mercy, ten percent of gifts given to the Cathedral Grotto Fund will be directed to a ministry of Catholic Charities of Southeast Michigan that serves the sick and suffering.
Even in the midst of a pandemic, the work to “unleash the Gospel” has not been abandoned. Bearing witness to our unshakable trust in God and His providence during these challenging times can be a particularly effective means of evangelizing our friends and neighbors.
“The Archdiocese of Detroit is honored to work with the Catholic Foundation of Michigan to facilitate, encourage, and invite others to support the Cathedral Grotto in this special way,” said Jim Thomas, Director of Development Mission Support for the Archdiocese of Detroit. For more information about the Grotto, please contact Jim Thomas.