The icon of Our Lady of Jasna Gora in Poland is under the custodianship of the Order of St Paul the First Hermit, and it has, over the centuries, been credited with many miracles. It is a long way from Poland to Australia, but it was a miracle that brought Father Augustine Lazur to Australia in April 1981 to establish a Marian Shrine in this country.
After many prayers and a great deal of faith, despite a small bank balance, he came to the Southern Highlands of New South Wales. In 1984, with the help of countless benefactors, he purchased the property now known as ‘Penrose Park’. The miracles, big and small, have continued to this day.
The crowds, who flock to ‘Penrose Park’ on pilgrimage, especially on the monthly Fatima Day, are testimony to the fact that here is a place of great peace and tranquillity, many having found reconciliation after perhaps years of torment.
From those early beginnings in an old tin shed, the generosity of the many pilgrims made it possible for part of the new monastery to be built in 1991, and further extensions were started in 1994. The Pauline Fathers moved into their improved quarters and lovely private chapel the following year. Another miracle occurred when Bishop Philip Wilson of Wollongong dedicated the beautiful new church on May 24th 1997, only three years after the first brick was laid.
It was a day to be cherished in the memories of all who were present, but it was not the conclusion of the work of improving this wonderful Shrine for all to enjoy. With the blessing of Our Lady of Mercy, we have great faith that your fantastic support will be maintained and that “Penrose Park” will long continue to be a place of pilgrimage and a sanctuary of comfort for all who come here.