Friday, December 31, 2010

Our Lady of Lourdes Grotto

Mirador Hill, Baguio city
by lakwatserong tatay

Our last for that day, is the Lourdes Grotto, even though it rains our group proceeds to this sacred placed. Because one of the most frequently visited and revered sites in Baguio is the Lourdes Grotto. Situated atop Mirador Hill in the western part of the city, it draws an equal number of pilgrims and tourists.

Getting to the Lourdes Grotto is not difficult, as there is a well kept road that will take you directly to the grotto. Alternatively you use the cab and inform the driver that you want to go to the shrine.
Our Lady of Lourdes Grotto
Grotto's History Signage
As you reach the site, you will have to climb the 252 steps to reach the top and see the statue of the Lady of Lourdes. Even though it is a long way up, it is not a problem as there are stopovers along the way, and there are also benches installed there. There is also a rail on the sides and center of the steps.

Once you make the top of the Lourdes Grotto, you will come upon the image of the Lady of Lourdes. There you can say a prayer. Most bring flowers and candles, but if you don’t have any, there are plenty of vendors who will be willing to sell some to you. Not surprisingly, the site is very active not just during the summer but even during Holy Week, as pilgrims make the trek to pay homage and say prayers to the Blessed Mother.
Prayer's Candle Place
Flower fauna on this Hill
From this perspective you can see practically the whole of Baguio. If you visit the area in the morning and the visibility is good, you will even glimpse parts of La Union and Pangasinan.

The statue of Our Lady of Lourdes, indeed the whole Lourdes Grotto, was built to honor the memory and visions of Bernadette Soubirous, a poor peasant girl in Lourdes, France who, from February 11 to July 16 1858, began to receive messages from the Virgin Mary. Four years later in 1862, the Catholic Church declared that the messages and visions of the 14 year old girl were genuine, and the construction of the statue were allowed to proceed.
252 steps going down

252 steps going up
The Lourdes Grotto is not just the only attraction in the area; as you traverse the road to the grotto you will see Stations of the Cross, marked with various religious symbols. One of the most renowned is the statue in the 12th station, called the Our Lady of Divine Shepherd.
Holy Water font
The holy water font, which has flowing water and a plaque in white marble with the words of the Sign of the Cross, a reminder to all that the Lourdes Grotto is a sacred site and at the foot of the hill begins the pilgrimage up the hill.
Government Marker Signage
After you make the visit to the Lourdes Grotto, you can drop by the stalls located in the area. Here you can buy all kinds of religious items and relics, and some of the finest handicraft from Baguio.

2 comments:

melovesflying said...

Hello. I am a graduating student from UP Manila and blog hopping led me here. :) I was wondering if you could answer a survey I made regarding Filipino bloggers. This is for my thesis and answering will only take you a couple of minutes.

http://www.kwiksurveys.com/online-survey.php?surveyID=HLEKII_31745bbc

Confidentiality will be of utmost priority. Answering my survey will be very much appreciated. Thanks! :)

lakwatserong tatay said...

hi,

Definitely i'll answer it, and hope to help complete your thesis.

thanks

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