Virgin Mary statue returns to Mount St. Mary’s in Maryland

EMMITSBURG, Md. (AP) — A 26-foot statue of the Virgin Mary is back in place at a Catholic university in Maryland.

The Blessed Virgin Mary sculpture at the National Shrine Grotto of Our Lady of Lourdes near Emmitsburg was removed a year ago for restoration. It was returned to Mount St. Mary’s University on July 19. (Mount St. Mary’s University)

The Frederick News-Post reports that the statue has been put back in place atop a 78-foot pedestal at the National Shrine Grotto on the campus of Mount St. Mary’s University in Emmitsburg after a year of restoration work. That work continues even as the statue is back in place, surrounded by scaffolding.

Workers are now in the process of layering gold leaf to statue’s exterior. The university has raised $400,000 to support the restoration; about $450,000 more is needed. The statue is expected to be completed next month, with a formal ceremony planned for October.

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