Thousands of Roman Catholic faithful from Africa and Europe are on Thursday expected to arrive at Dassa-Zoume town in Benin’s central-south region, to participate in the 61st edition of the annual pilgrimage at La Grotte Marial Notre Dame d’Arigbo, in honour of the Virgin Mary.
Bishop Antoine Ganye, President of Benin’s Episcopal Conference, said the 2015 pilgrimage edition would be presided over by a special guest sent from the Vatican, Cardinal Robert Sarra.
He said during the event, that would run from Aug. 21 to 23, Cardinal Sarra would preside over a major mass for peace in all African countries and others across the world that were affected by terrorism.
According to a report, in 1954, after the appearance of Virgin Mary at La Grotte Marial Notre Dame d’Arigbo, the Cotonou Archbishp Louis Parisot said the site should be set aside for the meeting of Catholics, who cannot afford to go to Rome or Lourdes in France.
For the last 61 years, Catholics from Africa and Europe have been meeting in Dassa Zoume to pray to the Virgin Mary.