Church of St Dominic & The Blessed Virgin
At the beginning of the 13th century the Pope approved the Dominican Order. This Order is a Catholic monastric Order established by a Spanish priest, St. Dominic from France.
In Rabat there is a cave where the Virgin Mary had appeared according to the legend and spoke to a sportsman ( a local bird hunter ) who had taken refuge in a cave.
In 1450 the Dominican monks came to Malta and built their first monastery on this cave. The church of ‘St. Dominic & The Blessed Virgin’ is now established there.
Supported by the King of Spain the Maltese government and local privat donors started building a church in 1457. In 1466 the base was laid of Our Lady of the Cave. The complex was finished in 1500. Around 1520 the Ottoman Empire took over the monastery to use it as a fortified location to attack Mdina.
The building suffered a lot from the combat activities and the rebuilding started in 1630.The monastery took the forms of a Middle Age fortress with fountains, a garden and a big inner court. On the walls there are still big sundials from the 1717s period.
An important Maltese relic is located in St. Dominic’s Convent, namely a marble statue of the Virgin Mary which cried tears of blood. The Virgin Mary had twice cried tears of blood in 1999 after feasts dedicated to The Virgin Mary.
The events were thoroughly studied and the statue can now be seen in the Church of Our Dear lady of the Cave. The statue is of course protected.
Additional Online information
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In the background you can see the statue of the crying Virgin Mary.
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