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Shrine of Our Lady of the Cedars

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Shrine of Our Lady of the Cedars or Our Lady of Lebanon, is a Roman Catholic shrine in Johannesburg, South Africa. It is at the Church of Our Lady of the Cedars of Lebanon in Woodmead, Sandton. Unofficially known as Our Lady of the Highway, the shrine is close to the busy Johannesburg - Pretoria freeway. Building commenced in November 1992 by the Superior, Rev. Fr. Elie Madi and was consecrated by the historic visit of Patriarch Cardinal Nasrallah Peter Sfeir.

The original statue was too small for the Shrine and in 1998 with the approval of Fr Tabet (Superior), plans were made for a new statue to be manufactured. It was donated by Umberto De Stefanis in thanksgiving for graces received. The statue was cast in fibreglass and reinforced to withstand the rigours of the Highveld summer thunderstorms and high winds. The height of the statue is 4,45 m and weighs approximately 1,5 ton, including the motor. The original statue was removed and placed in the gardens of the Church. Brickwork had to be undertaken to re-proportion the structure to accommodate the larger statue and a rotating plinth had to be constructed. In April 1999 the statue was hoisted into place and the turning platform set in motion.

On Saturday, 1 May 1999 at a Solemn Mass, the unveiling of the new statue of Our Lady of Lebanon took place with much celebration and fireworks. Presiding was the Apostolic Nuncio, His Excellency Archbishop Manuel Montero De Castro with Fr Marwan Tabet, Fr Pierre Albalaa and Fr Nadim Abou Zeid.

The Shrine holds about 40 people and is currently occupied 24 hours a day with Perpetual Adoration.

Shrine of Our Lady of the Cedars, Mulbarton, Johannesburg

The new shrine at Love & Peace - Mulbarton, south of Johannesburg is spirally built as a symbol of perfection, using traditional Maronite architectural styling with a rockface finish.

Below the Chapel is a special chamber dedicated to the disciples. Above, is a candle grotto in memory of all donors.

In November 2003, artist Nayef Alwan arrived from Lebanon to artistically enhance the original statue. The statue was reduced to 7.6 tons and transformed to a more beautiful and elegant image of Our Lady. On Thursday, 4 December the statue was again hoisted to the top of the Shrine and Our Lady again takes her place overlooking the mountains of the south.

The Chapel hold approximately 70 people and is regularly used for daily Mass, baptisms, small weddings and special family Masses.

Coordinates: 26°03′58″S 28°05′23″E / 26.0661°S 28.0896°E / -26.0661; 28.0896

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