Vailankanni, India: Basilica of Our Lady of Good Health, “The Lourdes of the East”
About the Miracles in Vailankanni:
Tradition here tells of the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary on three separate occasions.
The first occurred in May 1570, when a local shepherd boy was delivering milk. A beautiful woman, carrying a baby, appeared along the way and asked for some milk for the baby. He gave her some, but then when he go to his destination, he discovered the jug was full. A small shrine was built at the site where she appeared.
The second, in 1587, once again involved milk and a young boy. A crippled boy selling buttermilk saw a beautiful woman holding a young child. She asked him for some milk for the child, and he gave it to her. She then requested that he travel to a nearby town and ask a certain man to build a chapel in her honor. As he went on his way, he suddenly realized that he was no longer crippled. The chapel was built there as requested.
The third event took place in on September 8th, the Feast of the Nativity of Mary. A storm was threatening to capsize a boat and drown the sailors on board. They invoked the protection of the Blessed Virgin Mary and the storm subsided.
A larger chapel was built, and now an even bigger Basilica stands on the spot.The history of the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary here goes back to the 16th Century, although little is in writing.
About the Shrine Of Our Lady of Good Health in Velankanni, India:
The Shrine was raised to the status of Basilica in 1962 by Pope John XXIII. It is open daily from 5:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.
Daily and weekend masses are in English, Tamil and Hindi, Telugu. Consult their website for the schedules.
The annual Festival of Our Lady of Good Health takes place each year from August 28th through September 8th, with the culmination on the Feast Day of September 8th. Expect large crowds at that time–over 500,000. Some pilgrims walk barefoot for days on pilgrimage to the Shrine. Pilgrims represent many faiths: Catholic & Protestant Christians, Hindus, Buddhists, Muslims and others.
There is no airport here, the nearest airport is in Tiruchirappali (about 4 hours by Bus) or Chennai (about 9 hours by train).
Address: Vailankanni 611 111, Nagapattinam District, Tamilnadu, India
GPS coordinates: 10° 40′ 48.3024” N, 79° 50′ 58.3980” E
Tel: +91- 4365:263 423
Click here for the official website of the Basilica of Our Lady of Good Health in Vailankanni, India.