Benedict XVI is due to make an apostolic trip to Austria from September 7 to 9, for the 850th anniversary of the foundation of the Shrine of Mariazell.
The Marian shrine is located in the foothills of the Austrian Alps and is the most popular pilgrimage site in central Europe. The shrine can be reached by foot or by bus. The popularity of the shrine is demonstrated by the fact that there are trails that lead to the shrine from every region of the country, thus making a pilgrimage from any country surrounding Austria possible. Along the pilgrimage routes, various roadside shrines have been established for pilgrims to pray at.
The Pope’s visit will take place on September 8, Feast of the Nativity of the Virgin.
It will be the Holy Father's second apostolic trip outside Italy in 2007, following his journey to Brazil in May when he visited Sao Paulo and Aparecida for the Fifth General Conference of the Episcopate of Latin America and the Caribbean.