From its beginnings in the late 1960’s and its expansion in the 1980’s under Msgr. John Sweeney, the iconic Shrine of Our Lady of Peace has been a center for perpetual Eucharistic Adoration, the mercy of the confessional, and devotion to Mary the Mother of God in the Bay Area.
Over the years, the surrounding neighborhood has changed from California orchards to the tech industry’s “Silicon Valley”. Despite all the changes, the Shrine has preserved its mission to bring the message of Our Lady of Fatima to the West Coast. This past summer and fall has seen a number of special events at the Shrine, signs of the never failing intercession of Our Lady and Queen.
Tenth Anniversary of the Children’s Summer Oratory: 2003 – 2013
In the middle of California’s Silicon Valley, our Religious Family is working on another kind of “innovative initiative for the future”.
Every July since 2003, nearly 500 children and youth gather for the three-week long Summer Oratory under the shadow of the 30-foot statue of the seen from the freeway.
The whole community of our Novitiate St. Kateri Tekakwitha (SSVM) as well as the brothers of the Novitiate of St. Isaac Joges and Companions (IVE) transfer out to the West Coast for the month of July to assist the missionaries in coordinating talks, games, songs, and daily mass for hundreds of children. It is always an epic apostolate with teams, points, cheers, and heavenly patrons. May Our Lady of Peace continue to lead these little ones ever closer to Christ her Son.
Perpetual Profession of Two Former Parishioners
On September 14, the Triumph of the Cross, two sisters who had grown up in California and discovered their religious vocations at the Shrine of Our Lady of Peace returned to make their perpetual vows in Santa Clara.
Sr. Mary Our Lady of Peace Villlanueva, SSVM is currently a missionary in Williamsburg, Brooklyn (NY) serving at Saints Peter and Paul Parish. Sr. Maria Templum Divinitatis (“Temple of Divinity” in Latin) Araza, SSVM is currently a missionary in the Philippines serving in a house of formation for Asian vocations.
Following the Mass of final vows, the sisters celebrated in a reception for their family and friends which included Filipino traditional dances and favorite dishes. We thank Our Lady for her maternal care for these two daughters who have answered the call to consecrated life.
Thirtieth Anniversary of Consecration to the Immaculate Heart of Mary: October 7, 1983-2013
October 7, 2013 marked the thirtieth anniversary of the consecration of the Shrine to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. The community celebrated with a special procession following the noon mass on Sunday, October 6.
As a sign of entrusting the entire United States of America to Our Lady, fifty white crosses were prepared each one bearing the name of a state. Men and women from the Legion of Mary, the young adult group and the “Santa Monica Group” for young married couples helped to carry the crosses. Parishioners also carried flags for each country as another visible sign of the consecration of the whole world.
During the outdoor procession, Father Gustavo Nieto, IVE, rector of the Shrine, led the recitation of the Holy Rosary offering each decade for a specific nation. At the conclusion of the Rosary we gathered at the statue of Mary Our Lady of Peace where Fr. Nieto led us in renewing the consecration of the world to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. We ended the celebration with a song to Our Lady. May she intercede for us always, and teach us how to love her Son.