Shrine of Our Lady of Czestochowa in Malko Tyrnovo, Bulgaria

Sanktuarium Malko Tyrnovo

Malko Tarnovo is a town of several thousand located in the heart of the "Strndża" national park of Bulgaria only 9 kilometers from the border with Turkey. In this land inhabited for centuries by Thracians, Greeks and other various tribes, the Resurrectionists have been working for over 120 years. The Holy Trinity Church built by them towers over the town and greets arriving pilgrims from a distance. At this place is also found the Shrine of Our Lady of Częstochowa, Patroness of Christian Unity.

In the heart of the Church stands the image of the Black Madonna, donated to the Resurrectionists in 1907 by Valentine Jakubiak. This merchant from Lviv had brought the image to Adrianople, which was at that time the center of the Congregation’s mission in Bulgaria. The difficult fate of the missionaries there, however, forced them to find another location for the image of the Madonna of Częstochowa. After the end of the Russo-Turkish War, in 1928, the facility at Adrianople was closed and the icon was brought to Stara Zagora. About thirty years later, as a result of political decisions of the Communist government, the image was once again transferred –this time to its permanent place at Malko Tyrnowo.

Throughout all these difficult years the Mother of God from this building in Malko Tyrnowo has listened with love to the prayers seeking her intercession and has blessed her children, Orthodox and Catholics alike.

On May 25, 2002, during his apostolic pilgrimage to Bulgaria, Pope John Paul II crowned the image of Our Lady and entrusted to her the Church in Bulgaria: “May the Lord accompany you and assist you in the generous fulfillment of the tasks of your Christian life and, through the intercession of his Most Blessed Mother, venerated under the title of Patroness of Christian Unity in the Shrine of the Most Holy Trinity at Malko Tyrnovo, may he grant you the abundance of his blessings.”

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