Fatima is a small town in Portugal located north of Lisbon.
It is a major Catholic pilgrimage site because of reported sightings
of the Virgin Mary in 1917 by three local shepherd children. The
terrain around the village is wild and barren; a stark contrast with
the fervent devotion of the millions of pilgrims that visit each
year, especially for the main festivals on May 13 and October 13.
The Shrine of Our Lady of Fatima is one of most famous Marian
shrines in the world. Some four million people visit Fatima each
year, drawn by apparitions of the Virgin Mary reported by three
local shepherd children in 1917.
is a small town in southwest France. It is the largest Catholic
pilgrimage destination in France and one of the most popular
Catholic shrines in the world. Lourdes lies 497 miles south of Paris
in the foothills of the Pyrenees Mountains. The small town of only
17,000 inhabitants receives more than 5 million pilgrims and
tourists each year thanks to visions of the Virgin Mary reported by
a young girl named Bernadette in 1858. The Sanctuary of Our Lady of
Lourdes incorporates 52 hectares of property and 22 places of
worship, including a sacred grotto, two basilicas, and a variety of
buildings for pilgrims and the sick. Outside the sanctuary, many
pilgrims also visit the home of the young visionary, St. Bernadette.