Pilgrimage to the Sanctuary of Nossa Senhora do Alivio

Vila Verde
Description
The Sanctuary of Nossa Senhora do Alívio (Sanctuary of Our Lady of Relief), welcomes an important pilgrimage in Minho, confirmed by numerous pilgrims who partake, is held on the second and third Sunday of September, in honour of Senhora do Alivio (Our Lady of Relief).

Therefore, the procession on the 2nd Sunday, coming from within the Sanctuary and there returns, is characterized by the existence of several lifters, especially the one with Our Lady of Relief and many figurants carrying flags and banners. The procession on the 3rd Sunday is marked by the gathering of pilgrims in two separate locations: the centre of Vila Verde and the Four Evangelists Square in Soutelo. From these locations, the pilgrims go in procession until the Sanctuary.

Besides the processions, field church masses are held on both days, fulfilment of promises and a fair. The participation of thousands of people in the different activities that take place in these days is the expression of the deep religiosity of people in the region, are observed in the offerings to the Sanctuary. Varied type of statues and sculptures of various types are found in the Chapel of Promises.

Worthy of highlight is the set of four snakes, one of which was offered in 1818, by an emigrant in Brazil. The story told is that this emigrant from the Lands of Vera Cruz born in Vila Verde, was cutting wood, when at a certain stage because of his hard work, he felt tired and not realising it, decided to sit and rest on a “log” which was actually a snake. Realizing this, his affliction prompted an appeal for help to Senhora do Alivio (Our Lady of Relief), promising to deliver to the Sanctuary that snake skin if he managed to kill it and his request was answered by the Virgin.

Location: Vila Verde
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