A national shrine is a Catholic church or other sacred place which has met certain requirements and is given this honor by the national Episcopal Conference to recognize the church's special historical, cultural and religious significance.
For a church to receive the status of a national shrine involves a number of steps and certifications. It must first be designated as a diocesan (or archdiocesan) shrine, an honor conferred by the local bishop or archbishop. To be designated as a diocesan shrine, the subject church must be a place "to which numerous members of the faithful make pilgrimage for a special reason of piety." It must exceed other churches in terms of worship, Christian formation, and social services. When these requirements are met, the parish petitions the bishop to canonically elevate the church.
When devotion has grown, the diocesan shrine may petition the national Conference of Catholic Bishops. Evaluation by the nation's bishops involves considerations including canon law, liturgy, and doctrine.
Declaration of an international shrine is conferred by the Holy See.
Number by country
There are eight international shrines in the world, and 157 national shrines.
South and East Asia
Central and Southwest Asia
- Canon 1231, Code of Canon Law
- Tambuyat, Adrian. "Archdiocesan Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe declared National Shrine on May 31". Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Manila. Retrieved October 10, 2012.
- Canon 1230, Code of Canon Law
- Chow, Gabriel (2012). "International and National Shrines". GCatholic.org. Retrieved October 10, 2012.
- Catholic Shrines, a listing of all the Catholic shrines in the United States