PLAN YOUR VISIT
If you are planning a pilgrimage to the National Shrine of Saint Philomena in Briggsville, WI we will help you plan your trip. Regardless if you are visiting alone, with family or organized pilgrimage group, we are here to answer your questions and help you prepare for the trip.
In the late 1940s a self-sacrificing priest, named Father I.C. Wiltzius, devoted his frail energy to calling the world to venerate a Virgin-Martyr known as Saint Philomena. It was through the efforts of Father Wiltzius that the Shrine to Saint Philomena was established.
On May 24th, 1802, cleaning and clearing work was in progress in the most ancient of all the catacombs in Rome, the St. Priscilla catacombs, which dated almost from apostolic times. One of the workers, while digging in one of the ancient tunnels, by accident found a shelf-tomb that had never been opened. (Most of the graves in this cemetery had been opened, and their relics removed for safety.) The tomb was clearly the tomb of a martyr, with rough inscriptions including arrows, a lance, an anchor, a lily or flame, and the words: LUMENA PAXTE CUM FI
The three terracotta tiles bearing the inscriptions had been misplaced, either due to the tombs hasty construction, the darkness, or by a workman that could not read. The first tile should actually have been the third, in which case the writing would read: PAX TECUM FILUMENA “Peace be to you, Philomena.”
O FAITHFUL VIRGIN and glorious martyr, Saint Philomena, who works so many miracles on behalf of the poor and sorrowing, have pity on me. Thou knowest the multitude and diversity of my needs. Behold me at thy feet, full of misery, but full of hope. I entreat thy charity, O great Saint! Graciously hear me and obtain from God a favorable answer to the request which I now humbly lay before thee… (Here specify your petition.) I am firmly convinced that through thy merits, through the scorn, the sufferings and the death thou didst endure, united to the merits of the Passion and death of Jesus, thy Spouse, I shall obtain what I ask of thee, and in the joy of my heart I will bless God, who is admirable in His Saints.