About the National Shrine at St. Anne's

Saint Anne was born in Bethlehem and married Joachim from Nazareth in Galilee. Joachim was a shepherd given the task of supplying the temple of Jerusalem with sheep for sacrifices.

After twenty years of marriage Anne and Joachm had no children. Once, when Joachim overheard ridicule because of their childless state, he is said to have gone into the desert to plead with God to give them a child. After a time of fasting an angel appeared to assure Joachim he and Anne would be given a child they were to name Mary and dedicate to God.

In the meantime Saint Anne wondered where her husband had gone and in her despair at having been barren she prayed while she watched newborn birds in their nests in her garden. She cried out, “Why was I born, Lord?” That is when angel appeared to tell her she would soon give birth to a daughter she was to name Mary. The story continues with Anne and Joachim’s joyous reunion at the golden gate of Jerusalem.

After her birth Anne and Joachim dedicated Mary to God at the temple of Jerusalem and she spent much of her childhood there. When Mary was fourteen they betrothed her to Joseph of Nazareth and so Mary’s story continues with the birth of her son, Jesus, and his life on earth.

The life of Saint Anne and her connection as holy mother of Mary and grandmother of Jesus was very popular to early Christians. In the year 550 a church was built in honor of St. Anne in Jerusalem. It is believed to be near where Anne, Joachim and Mary lived.

Since the Seventh Century the Greek and Russian Churches have celebrated feasts honoring St. Joachim and St. Ann. The Western Churches began to celebrate the feast of St. Anne in the Sixteenth Century.

The feast of St. Anne is July 26th. There is no mention of Anne in the New Testament. The story of St. Anne comes chiefly from the Protoevangelium of James which only dated back to the second century.

St. Anne, patron saint of mothers and women in labor and minors, is symbolized by Mary in her lap holding the infant Jesus.

Saint Anne’s symbols are her careful instruction of Mary; crown; nest of young birds; door; Golden Gate of Jerusalem; infant Virgin in crib. Her shield has a silver border masoned in black, with silver lily on a blue field referring to the girlhood of the Virgin. She is often pictured as the Woman holding Mary or Jesus in her arms or lap; Woman at her betrothal to Joachim; Mother teaching Mary to read the Bible; Woman greeting Saint Joachim at Golden Gate; Woman with a book in her hand.

Joachim symbols are a Basket containing doves; model of Golden Gate of Jerusalem. He is pictured as a man bringing a lamb to the altar; greeting and/or kissing Saint Anne at the Golden Gate; elderly man carrying a basket of doves and an elderly man with the child Mary.

The most celebrated sight of St. Anne feast day is the annual ten-day Saint Anne’s Solemn Novena made at Saint Anne’s Monastery Church at the Shrine of St. Anne de Beaupre in Quebec, Canada. The ten-day novena ends on July 26th, the feast of St Anne.

St. Anne de Beaupré

Devotion to Saint Anne, in Canada (specifically in Quebec), goes back to the beginning of New France, and was brought thither by the first settlers and early missionaries. The hardy pioneers soon began to till the fertile soil of the Beaupré hillside; in the region which now forms the parish of Sainte Anne de Beaupré the first houses date from the year 1650. Nor was it long before the settlers built themselves a chapel where they might meet for Divine worship. One of their number, the Sieur Etienne Lessard, offered to give the land required at the spot which the church authorities should find suitable. On 13 March, 1658, therefore, the missionary, Father Vignal, came to choose the site and to bless the foundation of the proposed chapel which, by general consent, was to be dedicated to St. Anne. The very day the Saint showed how favorably she viewed the undertaking by healing Louis Guimont, an inhabitant of Beaupré, who suffered terribly from rheumatism of the loins. Full of confidence in St. Anne, he came forward and placed three stones in the foundations of the new building, whereupon he found himself suddenly and completely cured of his ailment.

This first authentic miracle was the precursor of countless other graces and favours of all kinds. For two centuries and a half the great wonder-worker has ceaselessly and lavishly shown her kindness to all the sufferers who from all parts of North America flock every year to Beaupré to implore her help. The old church was begun in 1676, and used for worship until 1876, when it was replaced by the present one, opened in October of that year. This last was built of cut stone, by means of contributions from all the Catholics of Canada. The offerings made by pilgrims have defrayed the cost of fittings and decoration. It is two hundred feet long, and one hundred wide, including the side chapels. Leo XIII raised it to the rank of a minor basilica 5 May, 1887; on 19 May, 1889, it was solemnly consecrated by Cardinal Taschereau, Archbishop of Quebec. It has been served by the Redemptorists since 1878. On either side of the main doorway are huge pyramids of crutches, walking-sticks, bandages, and other appliances left behind by the cripples, lame, and sick, who, having prayed to St. Anne at her shrine, have gone home healed.


The canons of Carcassonne, at the request of Monseigneur de Laval, first Bishop of Quebec, sent to Beaupré a large relic of the finger-bone of Saint Anne, which was first exposed for veneration on 12 March, 1670, and has ever since been an object of great devotion. Three other relics of the saint have been added in later times to the treasures of this shrine. In 1892 Cardinal Taschedreau presented the Great Relic to the basilica, the wrist-bone of St. Anne. It measures four inches in length, and was brought from Rome by Msgr. Marquis, P.A.


The pilgrimage to Beaupré has not always had the importance which it has gained in our time. Only in the last quarter of the nineteenth century did it attain to the growth, organization, and fame which now render it comparable with the great pilgrimages to Lourdes. Until 1875 the yearly number of pilgrims did not exceed 12,000, but to judge by the heap of crutches left at the saint's feet, there must always have been many marvellous cures wrought at Beaupré. More favourable conditions — including the strong impulse given by Cardinal Taschereau and his suffragans, the zeal of the Canadian clergy in organizing pilgrimages, improved modes of transportation, and the monthly "Annales de la Bonne Sainte Anne" — made possible the truly wonderful growth of these pilgrimages in the early twentieth century. Devotion to St. Anne is today more than ever the devotion of the Canadians.


The Relics of St. Anne, the founding of the city of St. Anne in Illinois and Fr. Charles Chiniquy


Sainte Anne, Illinois, is about 70 miles south of Chicago, in Kankakee County. The founding and history of St. Anne are told in The Heritage of St. Anne and The Saga of St. Anne. Here are some highlights:

Brothers Ambrose and Antoine Allain came from Canada to settle first in Bourbonnais in 1848 and in what would become St. Anne in 1850.

Around this time, the Bishop of Chicago sought a priest to establish a Catholic church in that area and persuaded Father Charles Chiniquy to bring some relics of St. Anne from Quebec, Canada and move to Illinois with 200 of his parishioners. By 1852 they had built forty log homes and a church and given the town its name.

Father Chiniquy persuaded other French Canadians, Belgians, and French to move there. But just as the town was thriving, he had a falling out with Catholic leadership that lead to his forming the Catholic Christian Church in 1858. About 80% of his parishioners followed him. The Catholic Christian Church continues today, but the church in St. Anne became Presbyterian.

Father Chiniquy’s worldwide fame and oratorical skills saved the town when the crop failures of 1858-9 hit. He raised money from all over the world.

Father Chiniquiy claimed to be a friend of Abraham Lincoln and hired Lincoln to defend him in a lawsuit.

The religious controversy had settled down by 1865 when the Bonvallets arrived.


Today St. Anne has a population of about 1200.

St. current Anne Catholic Church building was built in 1872 to replace Father Chiniquy's original log church.

The stone structure of the church is of Gothic design and topped with a bell tower. The church survived a fire in 1893.

The church contains a shrine to St. Anne, established in 1888 to provide parishioners with a counterpart of the shrine at Beaupré, Canada. The shrine is now known throughout the Middle West and several miraculous cures have been reported. St. Anne’s Day (July 26th) brings hundreds of visitors to venerate the relic of la bonne Sainte Anne.


Originally housing two relics of Jesus’ grandmother, one relic was stolen from the church in 2010. The remaining relic is utilized during the St. Anne Novena celebration, leading to the July 26th Feast Day, where an outdoor liturgy and procession of the relic is held.


Prayer for some comes as easy as thought. For others, prayer is a solemn recitation. There is no set time or place to pray. In that sense prayer is defined by the individual. Prayer may be spoken on ones knees, with hands clasped, sitting, standing, holding hands with others or hand uplifted. The position of the body is irrelevant. What is relevant are the thoughts and concentration that travel through the mind during times of prayer. For some prayer is a continual commune with God throughout each day, inviting God’s attention to all tasks, be they menial or phenomenal life-changing occurrences. Some pray only in times of necessity; others pray constantly. According to the Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC 2559), “Prayer is the raising of one’s mind and heart to God or the requesting of good things from God.”

St Anne Prayer (To Obtain Some Special Favor)

Glorious St. Anne, filled with compassion for those who invoke you and with love for those who suffer, heavily laden with the weight of my troubles, I cast myself at your feet and humbly beg of you to take the present affair which I recommend to you under your special protection.

St. Anne, please, recommend to your daughter, the Blessed Virgin Mary, and lay it before the throne of Jesus, so that He may bring it to a happy issue.

St. Anne cease not to intercede for me until my request is granted. (Here ask for favor you wish to obtain.)

Above all, obtain for me the grace of one day beholding my God face to face, and with You and Mary and all the saints, praising and blessing Him through all eternity. Amen.

Good St. Anne, mother of her who is our life, our sweetness and our hope, pray to her for us and obtain our request. (Three times).

Parents Prayer to St. Anne

We call upon you, dear St. Anne, for help in bringing up our family in good and godly ways. Teach us to trust God our Father as we rear the precious heritage entrusted to us. May His will prevail in our lives and His providence defend us. These blessings we ask for all families in our neighborhood, our country, and our world. Amen.

St. Anne Prayer

Good St. Anne, you were especially favored by God to be the mother of the most holy Virgin Mary, the Mother of our Savior. By your power with your most pure daughter and with her divine Son, kindly obtain for us the grace and the favor we now seek. Please secure for us also forgiveness of our past sins, the strength to perform faithfully our daily duties and the help we need to persevere in the love of Jesus and Mary. Amen.

St. Anne Prayer

Good St. Anne, you were especially favored by God to be the mother of the most holy Virgin Mary, the Mother of our Savior. By your power with your most pure daughter and with her divine Son, kindly obtain for us the grace and the favor we now seek. Please secure for us also forgiveness of our past sins, the strength to perform faithfully our daily duties and the help we need to persevere in the love of Jesus and Mary. Amen.

Prayer to Saint Anne

Lord, God of our fathers, through Sts. Joachim and Anne, You gave us the Mother of Your Incarnate Son. May their prayers help us to attain the salvation You promised to Your people. Amen.

Saint Anne Prayer

Good Saint Anne, obtain for me an increase of faith in the great mystery of the Holy Eucharist. Help me to see in this great Sacrament Christ our High Priest, making real for me the saving grace of His death on the cross; feeding my soul with His Flesh and Blood so that I may live in Him and He in me; producing the unity of the people of God and gathering His Church together. By your powerful intercession with God, help me to center my life around the altar that I may inherit the promise of the Lord: “He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood, has life everlasting.” Amen.

Prayer to Saint Anne for Special Needs

We thank you, dear St. Anne, for the favors, known and unknown, you have obtained for us. Assured of your constant love, we bring our special needs to you. (mention them here) Mother of the Mother of the Eternal Word made flesh, kindly recommend to your Grandson, Jesus, these intentions we lift to you in confident prayer. Amen. Children’s Prayer to St. Anne

Good St. Anne, you must have loved your parents just like we love Mom and Dad. They love us so much and take care of all our needs. Help us to make them happy every day. Thank you, dear Grandmother of Jesus, for listening to our prayer. Amen.

Teenager’s Prayer to St. Anne

Dear St. Anne, Mother of the Mother of God-become-human, please bless our parents who said “yes” to life. Warm our hearts with love for them. May we give them every reason for joy, not distress. Into your hands we commit our future. Teach us to say “yes” to God’s plan for us in all the years ahead. Amen.

A Memorare to St. Anne

Remember, dear St. Anne, that your name means “grace.” Confident in your power before the Throne of Grace, we implore your intercession. Share with us the faith, hope, and love that made your life a tribute of praise to the Lord God Almighty. May our days be grace filled and secure under your protection. Amen.

Daily St. Anne’s Prayer

Dear St. Anne, you never tire of assisting those who recommend themselves to you. Trusting not in our merits but in your powerful intercession, we request your help through this present day with all its duties and responsibilities, all its situations whether happy or anguishing. And when “tomorrow” becomes today, assist us anew for God’s glory and our good. Amen.


The Chaplet consists of three groups of five beads, separated by a single bead.

The 1st group of beads say: “In honor of Jesus”, 1 Our Father and 5 Hail Mary’s. After each Hail Mary say:” Jesus, Mary and St. Anne, grant the favor I request.”

The 2nd group of beads say: “In honor of Mary”, one Our Father and five Hail Mary’s. After each Hail Mary say: “Jesus, Mary and St. Anne, grant the favor I request.” The 3rd group of beads say: “In honor of St. Anne,” one Our Father and five Hail Mary’s. After each Hail Mary say: “Jesus, Mary and St. Anne, grant the favor I request.”