History of Saint Anne Shrine in Fiskdale:
In 1879, Monsignor Elzear Brochu, a Southbridge pastor in failing health, pledged to St. Anne that if he were to regain his strength, he would propagate her devotion by building a shrine in her honor. He did recover his health, so he purchased the land and had the present St. Anne Church constructed in 1883. He predicted that great wonders would be worked there. St. Anne Church as built in 1883 as a mission of Notre Dame Parish in Southbridge, MA. Simultaneously, another mission was established under the patronage of St. Patrick. Both missions were united in 1887 to form St. Anne and St. Patrick Parish.
On the Sunday following the feast of Saint Anne in July 1887, a parishoner, Mrs. Mary Houde, was partially healed of dropsy as she approached the altar to receive Communion. One year later, on the same Sunday, and in similar circumstances, Mrs. Houde was completely healed.
That afternoon, parishoners gathered at the church and formed the first procession in thanksgiving to God for this favor obtained through the intercession of Saint Anne. WIth that procession, the Shrine was born.
In 1893, an authentic relic of Saint Anne was donated to the Sturbridge Shrine by the Shrine to Saint Anne de Beaupre in Quebec, Canada.
Soon the church was too small to accomodate the crowds which flocked to the Chirch of Saint Anne. Therefore, an outdoor pavilion was constructed and Sunday Masses began to be celebrated outside. A Way of the Cross and shrines to various saints were added and the grounds were embellished for the devotion of the faithful.
In 1955 Bishop Wright of the Diocese of Worcester entrusted the Shrine and Parish to the pastoral care of the Assumptionists.
Since the first healing over 100 years ago, people have continued to come to this holy place seeking solace and peace from God through the intercession of Saint Anne. The devotion and faith of so many Christians have made this Shrine an ideal place to discover and experience the unfailing love of Christ for His people.
About Saint Anne Shrine in Fiskdale:
In addition to the church, there is an outdoor chapel, a votive chapel, magnificent stations of the cross as well as statues of various saints located among peaceful grounds.
The shrine also features a gift shop and museum.
In 1971 the Assumptionists brough their unique collection of Russian icons to the Shrine. Most of the icons on view in the Icon Chapel at Saint Anne Shrine (adjoining the Gift Shop) were obtained by the various Assumptionist priests who served as chaplains to the foreign diplomatic corps in Moscow from 1934 to 1999. Nearly all were icons that were in Russian home and used in family deveotions until the aggressively atheistic Soviet regime made possessing them dangerous and prejudicial to one’s social advancement.
Also on display are liturgical objects that belonged to Bishop Pie Neveu, a French Assumptionist missionary who served as pastor of Church of Saint Louis of the French in Moscow. This church served Catholic foreigners visiting or residing in the Russian capital.
The Icon Exhibit is open daily Sunday through Saturday 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM. There is no charge for admission to the exhibit.Those holy images are available for public viewing in the museum located within the gift shop.
Traveling to Saint Anne Shrine in Fiskdale, MA:
Fiskdale is located about 50 miles west of Boston.
Address: St. Anne-St Patrick Parish, 16 Church St., Fiskdale, MA 01518
Tel: +1 (508) 347-7338 Fax: +1 (508) 347-2982
email: [email protected]
Click here for the official website of Saint Anne Shrine.
There is one hotel in the town but several in nearby Sturbridge. Find hotels & restaurants in Fiskdale & Sturbridge, compare prices, and read what other travelers have to say at TripAdvisor