In the 12th century, near Cagnac les Mines (5 km from Albi), the Virgin Mary is believed to have appeared to some shepherds, in the middle of a bush. A statue of the Madonna and Child was subsequently discovered at the same place. This event is at the origin of a local pilgrimage in honor of Our Lady of the Drèche (or of the Right).
The shrine was restored in 1860. Its shape is an octagonal rotunda, 19 and a half meters high, of equal height and width.
Current life of the shrine
The shrine is open every day from 8:30 am to 12 noon, 2 pm to 6 pm. It is operated by the Franciscan Friars Third Order Regular.
Masses: Weekdays 8:30 am; Sunday 9 am & 10:30 am
Meditated Rosary: Every Sunday 3 pm
Main Feast Days: September 8 (OL of the Drèche), October 13 (Last apparition of Our Lady of Fatima), December 8 (Immaculate Conception), February 11 (Our Lady of Lourdes), April 30 (beginning of the Month of Mary), May 13 (Our Lady of Fatima), May 31 (end of the Month of Mary), August 15 (Assumption)
Carillon: Sundays and feast days 4 pm-6 pm
Guided tours: Sunday after 4 pm (inquire about other times). The tour includes:
- A guided visit of the church and its sumptuous paintings (1894)
- The optional ascent of the bell tower
- The visit of the Franciscan friars' exhibition and of the choir
- Finally a little "exotic" tour of the Museum of the Mato-Grosso Mission (Brazil).
Message of Our Lady of the Drèche
Since its origins, Our Lady of the Drèche has been invoked as Salus Infirmorum: Health of the Sick. And she presents her Child. This Child is Salvation itself. This is even the meaning of his name: Jesus means "God is salvation, God saves."
Prayer to Our Lady of the Drèche
With the whole Church, we invoke you as Salvation of Christians, Refuge of Sinners, Consolation of the Sorrowful, Health of the Sick.
In this shrine of the Drèche, we have witnessed the favors you have granted to your faithful; we pray with confidence:
That Christians will remain faithful to their baptism and strong in their faith,
that sinners will return to God, through conversion,
that the sorrowful will be comforted,
that the sick will find healing in their soul, heart, and body.
Mother of Jesus
We look toward you who are also our Mother
Confident in the power of your intercession, we ask you, for ourselves and our beloved, God's mercy and compassion; to help us be docile to the Holy Spirit's inspiration, to be faithful and generous servants until death.
Official Site : www.notredamedeladreche.org
J. Bounhiol, René LAURENTIN and Patrick SBALCHIERO