Patron of Sailors
Our Lady of the Guard, Based on a sanctuary which anoints the highest hill in Marseilles, France harbor recalls the Blessed Virgin Mary and her protection of everything relating to the sea. She defends the city and is nicknamed la Bonne Mére (the Good Mother). The hill’s importance as a place of worship for all religions dates back to Greco-Roman times and its military vocation to the Middle Ages, when it was named The Guard. A chapel dedicated to the Blessed Virgin and authorized by St. Victor sits at the precipice where an unusually large and striking monument of the Blessed Virgin greets all visitors to Marseilles. As well as being a major local landmark, Notre-Dame de la Garde is the site of a popular annual pilgrimage every August 15th, the Feast of the Assumption.