Ohkay Owingeh in Rio Arriba County, New Mexico — The American Mountains (Southwest)
Shrine of Our Lady of Lourdes
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San Juan Parish's Shrine of Our Lady of Lourdes was conceived as place of pilgrimage for those faithful wishing to honor Our Lady and to be given a glimpse of her place of apparition to St. Bernadette Soubirou in the Pyrenees Mountains of southern France beginning February 11, 1838.
In 1888, 15 years after Lourdes was declared an official Marian apparition by the Church, Fr. Camillo Seux (born in Lyon, France), our pastor from 1868-1922, erected the statue of Our Lady of Lourdes that is on the pedestal in front of the church across the street. Large numbers of pilgrims came to pray on their knees on the pavement beneath the statue. Moved by this sight, Fr. Seux decided to use his family's inheritance to build the Shrine.
Working with San Juan Pueblo's governor, he obtained a deed for the property. Possibly influencing the site for
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the Shrine is the fact that it was on this approximate site on which the third parish church was built in 1645 and later destroyed in the Pueblo Revolt of 1680.
The Shrine was consecrated and blessed on April 19, 1890 by Archbishop Jean Baptiste Salpointe. We believe that the architect for the construction of the Shrine was Martin Mouley, the same architect who built the Basilica of St. Francis and the Loretto
The Shrine is one of only 19 buildings in the United States built entirely out of lava rock. It contains the original stained glass windows imported from Claremont, France. The golden stars and the gold on the altar in the apse are 23 carat gold. The statues of Our Lady of Lourdes and St. Bernadette in the apse are part of the original Shrine.
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Our Shrine was renovated in 2004 and rededicated by Archbishop Michael Sheehan on December 8, 2004, the 150th anniversary of the issuance of the Dogma on Mary's Immaculate Conception, the name she gave to St. Bernadette when asked who she was. During renovation we decided not to install electricity but instead, Elvira Salazar, who had conserved one of the original chandeliers, donated it back to the church, and with donations from Sara Montoya, her sister, and from the family of Dominic Maestas, we replicated two other chandeliers. The original is nearest to the altar.
Fr. Seux, in the tradition of French burials of its famous priests, is buried under the floor boards of the main aisle, along with his assistant priest for many years, Fr. Alverline who also died in 1922.
Presently we celebrate daily
Location. 36° 3.239′ N, 106° 4.266′ W. Marker is in Ohkay Owingeh, New Mexico, in Rio Arriba County. Marker is on State Road 291 0.1 miles south of State Road 74, on the left when traveling south. Touch for map. From NM 68, Northbound, turn left on NM-74 - go 0.7 / 1.1 mi / km Turn Left on NM-291. In approximately .1 mile you will reach the the original Okeh Owingeh Catholic chapel. Marker is in this post office area: Ohkay Owingeh NM 87566, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 5 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. San Gabriel (approx. 0.7 miles away); Esther Martinez - P’oe Tsáwäˀ (1912-2006) (approx. 0.7 miles away); Dominguez Escalante Trail (approx. 2.2 miles away); Española Valley (approx. 2.9 miles away); Chimayo Trading Post / Trujillo House (approx. 4.3 miles away); The Bond House (approx. 4.4 miles away); Historic Los Luceros (approx. 4½ miles away); Santa Cruz de la Cañada / Santa Cruz Plaza on the Camino Real (approx. 4½ miles away).
More about this marker. The pueblo plaza is east of the original chapel. On the west side of this chapel are the markers for the Shrine of Our Lady of Lourdes.
Also see . . .
1. Ohkay Owingeh (San Juan Pueblo) Wikipedia Link. Some background on the Pueblo. (Submitted on July 8, 2010.)
2. Le site officiel des Sanctuaires Notre-Dame de Lourdes (France) | Lourdes. The Official Site of the Sanctuary of Notre Dame, Lourdes France (Submitted on July 8, 2010.)
Categories. • Churches & Religion • Hispanic Americans • Native Americans • Notable Buildings •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on July 8, 2010. This page has been viewed 2,560 times since then and 2 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10. submitted on July 8, 2010. • Syd Whittle was the editor who published this page.