The Hill of Crosses is the site of a Catholic pilgrimage 12 km from the city of Šiauliai, in northern Lithuania.
The first crosses were placed on the fortified hill in the 14th century and after the uprising of Poles and Lithuanians against the Russian Empire in 1831.
For more than a century, worshipers of Catholicism have brought tens of thousands of crosses, crucifixes, statues of the Virgin Mary and many more.
Since Lithuania regained independence in 1991 and especially after the Pope’s visit, the Hill of Crosses has been internationally considered a holy place for Catholics, which can be seen from the crosses with inscriptions from all over the world.
Access : Coordinates: 56.015278, 23.416667 / The Hill of Crosses is a place of pilgrimage near the town of Šiauliai in northern Lithuania.
- On September 7, 1993, Pope John Paul II visited this place and celebrated a mass in the open air in front of about 100,000 believers in the altar pavilion built especially for this purpose. During this ceremony, John Paul II entrusted the Franciscan order with the care of the place of pilgrimage and the building of a monastery.
- According to another version, the Hill of Crosses arose when crosses were established in honor of the Lithuanians killed during the repression of the tsarist authorities of the Russian Empire after the insurrection of 1831. When the relatives of the patriots could not recover their bodies, they placed a cross on the hill where there had been a fort on top.
- Since the year 2000, there is a Franciscan hermitage next to the hill. However, as the hill does not fall under the jurisdiction of the Catholic Church, the faithful can go and place the crosses as they wish.
- Cardinal Vincentas Sladkevičius has described the hill as the “heart of Lithuania open to the Most High”
Go next : Šiauliai , one of the oldest and the fourth largest city in Lithuania / Klaipeda, Lithuania’s third largest city.