Skip to main content

The Basilica of Scherpenheuvel

The town of Scherpenheuvel has been an important pilgrimage site for Catholic believers since the 16th century and is still the most visited pilgrimage site in Belgium. The small Basilica of the town is called 'The basilica Our Lady' and is implanted in the middle of the town on a hill. The church is visible on a hilltop far into the perimeter.

Picture by Harry Fabel

A legend of a miraculous old wooden Our Lady's statue, dating back to the 14th century, is at the origin of this pilgrimage church. On the hilltop, there was an oak tree that had the shape of a cross. A pious man then hung a statue of Mary on the oak and from then on many people came to pray. When a servant of a shepherd wanted to take the figurine with him, he was, according to the legend, nailed to the ground until a visitor placed the figurine back on the tree. After some wooden churches, the building of the current basilica was commissioned by the archdukes Albrecht en Isabella in 1609, it was designed by architect Wenceslas Cobergher.

Picture by Pixabay

The basilica is surrounded by a beautiful and special seven-sided square. Behind the Basilica there is a park. There is also a remarkable water source. On the square, you can find a candle chapel and many stalls with souvenirs, locally produced foods, and beverages.

Popular posts from this blog

Belgian kids got to drink beer during their school lunch

There are almost 800 different kinds of beer in Belgium. One kind was very popular till the70's, it was even given to kids at school during their lunch break. Beer to kids? You must be kidding! Well, let's go a bit further into this. The beers we are talking about were so-called table beers, a kind of beer that was specially made for people who can't drink alcohol. So it's was a kind of alcohol-free beer, a kind, because there was some alcohol in it. between 1 and 4 percent alcohol. The most popular table beer was Piedboeuf, it had 1.1 percent alcohol in it and there was a lot of sugar added to make it as sweet as Coca-Cola. A good marketing strategy made that it was well distributed in almost all schools in Belgium. The reason was that it would be very healthy for them, because of the natural ingredients and of course the sugar. It would make them grow fast and strong. It would even be good for pregnant women and for women that were breastfeeding their baby'

How the Belgians founded New York

In order to avoid any confusion in this story, it is important to know that in the sixteenth century, the Netherlands covered a part of northern France and Lorraine, Belgium, Luxembourg, and the present Netherlands. Its inhabitants were called the Belgians, and the maps represented the country in the shape of a lion: the "Leo Belgicus". Besides, numerous maps from the sixteenth century showed this territory under the name of Belgium. The latter failed into disuse for the benefit of the Netherlands and only reappeared in 1789 on the occasion of the first Belgian revolution. In 1831 Belgium became an independent country. Today Belgium is a lot smaller and is divided into two big regions mostly based on the language they speak in that particular region. In the north, there is Flanders where they speak Flemish (Dutch) and in the south, there is the Walloon part where they speak French. Almost in the center and between the two parts is the region of the capital Brussels.

Belgium has the largest chocolate factory in the world

The largest chocolate factory in the world is located in Wieze, Belgium. Barry Callebaut produces around 270,000 tonnes a year, from cocoa bean to chocolate, making it the largest chocolate supplier in the world. Picture by Pixabay In Wieze you will also find the first of the seventeen Chocolate Academy centers that have since been distributed all over the world. A completely new building was recently opened, making the Chocolate Academy center in Wieze the largest center in the world. Picture by Pixabay The Belgian chocolate sector exports its quality chocolate to the entire world. Two-thirds of both the industrial chocolate and the end products are exported abroad. That's because there is a Belgian chocolate code developed in 2007. The Belgian chocolate code must ensure that the term 'Belgian chocolate' is only used for chocolate that actually comes from Belgium.