On May 1, Salzburg Archbishop Franz Lackner emphasized the importance of a free church in a free state on the occasion of the festive reopening of the pilgrimage church Maria Hollenstein in the parish of Ramingstein. In his homily, he also paid tribute to the “Rosary Atonement Crusade for Peace in the World” (RSK), a great prayer movement of Fr. Peter Pavlicek, which, according to Archbishop Lackner, also prays for contentment in the hearts of people. He also remembered the recently deceased spiritual director of the RSK, Fr. Benno Mikocki, as kath.net reported.
Archbishop Lackner also commented on the debate about abortion and emphasized, in view of the intimate mother-child bond already in early pregnancy, that he “does not even want to think” about how “disgustingly destructive” an abortion is. He recalled that an embryo already perceives many sounds in the womb and has an “intimate attention to the sound of the mother’s voice.” Marian shrines like Maria Hollenstein should be places where pilgrims could become aware of how wonderfully God created and redeemed us. Women such as Elizabeth and Mary show us the beauty and dignity of life, and our vocation is to let God become great through the small in us.
The pilgrimage church of Maria Hollenstein takes its name from a “hollow stone,” a rock bulge the size of a 15-liter bucket into which water seeps without any apparent inflow. Believers say that the water helps heal ailments of the eye and call it “eye water.” The chapel in this place was built in the middle of the 18th century and last renovated in 1952/53. Since August 2020, the Lungau pilgrimage church was closed due to general renovation work.