100 YEARS: Grotto Celebrates Anniversary
The Grotto of the Redemption will celebrate it’s 100th anniversary this weekend.
The huge artwork made of stones is located in the northwest Iowa town of West Bend. Father Paul Dobberstein started work on the Grotto in 1912. He came to the U.S. from Germany, when he was 20 years old. At one point he became very ill with pneumonia. While struggling to survive he prayed to the Blessed Virgin Mary for healing. After he was healed he wanted to construct a Grotto to honor her, and his Catholic Faith.
The Grotto tells the story of the fall of man, and the redemption through Christ, using thousands of stones from all over the world. Since then the Grotto has also drawn visitors from all over the world.
This weekend the Grotto will mark 100 years since Father Dobberstein began the work, with an assistant, Matt Szerensce. The work was later continued with Father Greving. “Celebrating what Father Doberstein started in 1912, not only him but all the other builders here at the Grotto…Father Greving, Matt Szerensce and everybody who’s been here since,” said Darcie Kramer, who is the Director of the Grotto.
Activities start Friday and run through Sunday. For more information check the Grotto website www.westbendgrotto.com