After nine years, the renovation of the Mother Sanctuary of Nossa Senhora da Conceição in the historic mining town of Ouro Preto has entered its final phase. The site houses the remains of the greatest symbol of Brazilian Baroque art, the sculptor Antônio Francisco Lisboa, better known as Aleijadinho.
The construction of the church began in 1727. One of those responsible for the work was Aleijadinho’s father, Manoel Francisco Lisboa. The church has eight altars and is one of the oldest in the state.
To commemorate the end of the sanctuary’s renovation, a series of festivities is planned for the period from August 19 to 26, as announced in the site of the church that is considered not only religious, but also historical, artistic and cultural heritage.
“Everyone will be able to access the splendid result of the collective process of care and restoration of this extraordinary religious, historical, artistic and cultural heritage, a sacred place where the mortal remains of the greatest exponent of Minas Gerais baroque rest”, says the parish priest and rector of the Matriz de Nossa Senhora da Conceição in public invitation to the community for the festivities that begin on August 19, with a festive mass followed by a procession.
The official commemorative schedule at the end of the sanctuary’s renovation is as follows:
8/19, Friday – At 19:00, festive mass at the Church of São Francisco de Assis. After the celebration, a procession solemnly leading the Blessed Sacrament to the Mother Sanctuary of Nossa Senhora da Conceição. The arrival, blessing of the Blessed Sacrament.
8/20, Saturday – At 18:00, procession with the image of Nossa Senhora da Conceição, leaving the Church of São Francisco de Assis towards the Sanctuary; at 6:30 pm, reception by the archbishop, solemn opening of the main door of the main sanctuary and pontifical entrance; and, at 7 pm, solemn sung mass, presided over by the metropolitan archbishop of Mariana (MG), Dom Airton José dos Santos, with the rite of blessing of the church followed by the coronation of the image of Nossa Senhora da Conceição.
8/21, Sunday – At 6 am, festive dawn, with the peal of bells; at 8 am and 10 am, festive mass; at 4 pm, harpsichord concert with the organist Josineia Godinho; at 7 pm, Mass is celebrated, followed by the solemn singing of the Te Deum Laudamus (We praise you, O God); festive mass; and, at 8:30 pm, presentation by the Coral Canarinhos de Itabrito (MG).
8/22, Monday – at 9 am, coffee with the tourist guides and staff of the Parish and Aleijadinho Museum, followed by a guided tour of the Church of Nossa Senhora da Conceição, with an emphasis on the restored goods; at 18:00, mass at the Mother Sanctuary of Nossa Senhora da Conceição and, at 19:00, inauguration of the Rosary of Men of Nossa Senhora da Conceição, with the presence of the Rosary of Men of the Parish of São Sebastião de Itabirito (MG).
8/23, Tuesday – At 19:00, festive mass with special participation of representatives of the Parish of Santa Efigênia, who, at the end, will honor the Immaculate Conception.
8/24, Wednesday – At 19:00, festive mass with special participation of representatives of the Parish of Christ the King, who, at the end, will honor the Immaculate Conception.
8/25, Thursday – At 7pm, festive mass with special participation of representatives of the Parish of Santa Rita de Cássia de Ouro Preto, who, at the end, will honor the Immaculate Conception.
8/26, Friday – At 19:00, the parish priest of Nossa Senhora do Pilar will celebrate a festive mass, with special participation of the parishioners, who, at the end, will honor the Immaculate Conception and, at 20:00, a presentation by the Padre Simões School of Music and the São Pio X School of Music inside the sanctuary.
Translated to english by RJ983
From Brazil, by EBC News