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    Saturday, April 01, 2006


    The stones in the Grotto of the Annunciation in Nazareth have the same origin as those of an altar at the Holy House of Loreto, says an archaeological study.


    Their finding has reopened discussion of the historicity of the mysterious transfer of the Holy House of Nazareth to Loreto.

    According to tradition, the house was translated miraculously from Nazareth to Tersatto (in present-day Croatia) in 1291 and then to Loreto.

    Giorgio Nicolini, author of a book on the Holy House, told ZENIT that, regarding "the authenticity of the Holy House of Loreto as Mary's 'true Nazarene House,' there was never any doubt other than on the part of those who are not acquainted with the secular studies in this respect; so much so that, for seven centuries, all the Supreme Pontiffs confirmed the authenticity with solemn canonical acts of 'approval.'"

    However, the new study, regarding the Altar of the Apostles, "is important because, in addition to providing a further proof of the authenticity of the Holy House of Loreto as Mary's 'Nazarene House, it also provides an even more spectacular 'proof' in regard to the miraculousness of the translation of the Holy House of Nazareth," said Nicolini.

    In this connection, Pope Pius IX wrote in the 1852 bull "Inter Omnia": "Venerated in Loreto is that House of Nazareth, so loved by the Heart of God, and that, built in Galilee, was later separated from its foundations and, by divine power, translated beyond the sea, first to Dalmatia and then to Italy."

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