Lady of Madhu in Mannar declared as a sacred area
The Cabinet approved a proposal by President Maithripala Sirisena to declare the Holy Shrine of Our Lady of Madhu in Mannar as a sacred area yesterday (Wednesday).
The Shrine of Our Lady of Madhu is a much respected and venerated shrine to Catholics and for more than 400 years, Catholics and non-Catholics have visited the Holy Shrine to pay homage.
The Shrine also attracts Buddhists and Hindus devotees for veneration. Subject to ravages of the ethnic war dire need for constructive rehabilitation was becoming very evident due to immense hardship faced by the thousands of devotees making pilgrimage to the Shrine.
Madhu Shrine becomes the first Catholic Shrine to be declared a Sacred Area in the country.
For more than two decades, in the midst of the conflict and mass displacement, Madhu Shrine also served as a place of refuge for all affected people. Madhu Shrine has been recognised locally and internationally as a “safe haven” and “place of refuge” for people fleeing in the face of war and destruction.
The area where the Holy Shrine is located was in a state of neglect for some time due to the war.