Impressive Gozo Churches

Ta’ Pinu Basilica: One of the most visited Gozo attractions

The Basilica of Ta’ Pinu is perhaps the most loved from all Gozo churches. It is indeed the Maltese Islands’ most important centre of pilgrimage.

Ta’ Pinu is located a few kilometres west of Victoria (Gozo’s capital city).

Built in the 1920s, the impressive basilica which you see today is built on the site of a chapel where it is believed that a Gozitan woman, Carmela Grima, heard the Virgin Mary speak to her in 1883.

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The incident that made Ta' Pinu the most popular from all Gozo churches

It was the 22nd of June in 1883, when Carmela Grima was passing by the chapel on her way home. She suddenly heard a woman’s voice say: “Come, come.”

At first, Carmela was frightened as she couldn’t see anyone in the vicinity. When she heard the voice for the second time, she realized that it was coming from inside the chapel. Carmela went into the chapel and started to pray.

A voice coming from the image of the Virgin Mary told her to recite 3 Ave Maria in honour of the 3 days that the Madonna’s body remained in the tomb before her Assumption to Heaven.

Carmela did as she was asked. After more than a year from when the incident happened, Carmela confided in her friend Francesco Portelli and revealed her secret.

Surprisingly, Francesco told her that at roughly the same time, he too had heard a woman’s voice from inside the chapel asking him to pray. Shortly after this incident, Francesco’s mother was miraculously healed.

When word spread that a woman heard a message from the Virgin Mary on the site, many islanders began to make pilgrimages to the chapel. The number of pilgrims continued to increase and it was felt that a much larger church was needed. As its popularity increased, the Ta' Pinu Basilica eventually became one of the most sought after Gozo churches.

Over the years, many miracles were attributed to the intercession of Our Lady of Ta' Pinu.

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More info on Ta' Pinu Basilica

Ta’ Pinu Basilica is located out in the countryside and is dubbed as an architectural masterpiece, especially its interior. The old chapel where it is believed that Carmela Grima received her message for prayer from the Virgin Mary still exists today and is located at the back of the basilica.

The name Ta’ Pinu comes from the man that used to take care of the old chapel. His name was Filippino Gauci and Pinu is the local diminutive of his name.

The exterior of the church is rich and impressive and the interior is full of beautiful stone sculptures.

The old chapel has an extraordinary altarpiece painted by Italian artist Amadeo Perugino. It depicts eight angels crowning the Madonna. The crown is attached to the painting and it’s made of gold.

The basilica is also full of votive offerings that are constantly left by people who claim that they were healed by the miracles of the Virgin Mary of Ta’ Pinu.

Opening Hours

Daily: From 7.00am till 12.15pm and from 1.30pm till 7.30pm

Entrance: Free

(Note: Visitors are not allowed in the basilica in shorts, miniskirts, or sleeveless dresses)

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