Christian PilgrimagePilgrimages in LithuaniaJohn Paul II and Lithuania
Į pirmą puslapį

Mary, Protectress of Lithuania, watch over us, we beg you!
Vytauto Kandroto fotografija
Piligrimų kelias
Trakų bažnyčia
  • Evidence of the efforts made by Lithuania’s rulers to lead their people to Christianity.
  • The Trakai Mother of God image, which bears the title Protectress of Lithuania, is renowned for special graces.
  • Byzantine wall-painting specimens that date back to the times of Vytautas the Great.
  • Famed for an annual indulgence feast, and as the destination of pilgrimages during that feast from the Vilnius Gate of Dawn.

The Church of the Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary, standing atop the highlands of the Trakai peninsula, today seems to lie somewhat off the beaten track. However, a bird’s eye view reveals Trakai’s medieval structure, including residential areas among which the church clearly dominates. It marks the spiritual centre of the town, equal in significance to Trakai Castle. The church is exceptional not only for its size, but also for its history, having never been closed, turned over to non-Catholics or used for other purposes. The Trakai church is a unique monument to Lithuanian culture and faith, which embodies an ecclesiastical and artistic legacy of six centuries. But what draws pious visitors is not so much the church’s artistic and historical value as the fame for special graces of its painting of the Virgin Mary and Child. This is the oldest image of the Mother of God in Lithuania. Its title as Protectress of Lithuania is evidence not only of the importance of this painting, but also of the deep tradition of considering Lithuania to be a land of Mary, a realm safeguarded by the intercession of the Mother of God.