A good friend of ours is amending his life and stopped drinking around 4 months ago. Recently I was telling him about the news of an affirmed Mary apparition and shrine in Champion, Wisconsin called the Shrine of Our Lady of Good Hope. It became the only official Church-confirmed apparition site in the United States just 6 months ago (Dec. 2010).
As a fellow Catholic, I knew our friend would also find the joy in this amazing event and also just wanted to share something inspiring as he journeyed into new territory. It turns out he happened to have business in Green Bay and remembered that the shrine was nearby. Amazingly, it also happened to be Ash Wednesday.
He told us how it was quiet there and nobody was around, as it was snowing heavily at the time. And out of the silence, as he approached the shrine, a big friendly golden retriever appeared. Knowing how much our friend loves dogs, including his own two, we knew this was a sign and a reward for his efforts. Our friend said he felt like it was Jesus greeting him, appearing in the form of this peaceful retriever.
All photos were taken by our friend.
More on the incredible story of the Shrine is here.
For anyone who is considering a pilgrimage in the future, here are directions and hours:
While mailing address shows New Franklin, Chapel sits one mile east in Champion.
Shrine of Our Lady of Good Help
4047 Chapel Dr.
New Franklin, WI 54229