Ste Anne de Beaupre Shrine

Member Rating 4 out of 5 by zabelle on April 11, 2002

Saint Anne de Beaupre is probably the most famous shrine in North America; certainly it is the most famous in Canada. It began as a simple sailor’s chapel dedicated to Ste Anne and has grown into a magnificent basilica that is visited by the faithful from around the world. I have to admit that I have always had a fascination with Ste Anne even before I realized that I am related to 3 recipients of miracles at the shrine. Actually the first miracle was given to Louis Guimont and the best translation calls it a terrible pain in his back. He was totally cured as he placed 3 stones into the foundation of the chapel as it was being built. This was in 1658, unfortunately his cure didn’t stop him from being killed by the Iroquois in 1661.

The Present Basilica is the 5th church to be built here. It is a magnificent sight as you drive up along the river and I was even more impressed when I viewed it from a distance from the Ile de Orleans. It dwarfs everything else in the neighborhood. The twin spires frame a statue of Ste Anne that was salvaged from the previous church, which was lost to fire in 1922. What you notice first about the Basilica are all the crutches that are hung on the wall in mute testimony to all the cures that have occurred here. Mass goes on almost unceasing here and there are thousands of candles burning in supplication. I had a hard time finding a spot to place mine.

There is a memorial chapel to the side of the basilica and there are lots of memorial plaques, I dragged my family through the two chapels to read the names of all of our relatives. Up on the hill there is a life size stations of the cross and the truly devote climb the stairs up to them on their knees. Ouch! I skipped that part. The Redemptorists took over care of the Basilica over 100 years ago and there is always someone available to hear confession or just to talk. They are in a small building close to the parking lot.

I guess it goes without saying that they have a fabulous gift shop. It isn’t just the religious items that draws people here (though they have a wide and high quality selection). I come to the gift shop almost yearly to buy genealogy books. The series Nos Ancetres (Our Ancestors) is published in Ste Anne and the latest volume is usually available here in both French and English. Be warned the English version is about twice as expensive. I have all 30 volumes in French.

Sainte-Anne-de-Beaupré Basilica
10018 Royale Ave
Sainte-Anne-de-Beaupré, Quebec, G0A 3C0
+1 418 827 3781

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