National Shrine of St. Joseph
Pray at The Shrine
Address: 123 Grant St., De Pere, Wisconsin 54115 (the Shrine is adjacent to Old St. Joseph Church on the grounds of St. Norbert College)
Daily: 6:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m.
Sunday: 10 a.m. (and 7 p.m. during the Academic Year)
Monday through Friday: Noon
Perpetual Novena Mass
Wednesday: Noon (followed by the Novena Prayers)
Prayers: Please click here for the Novena In Honor of St. Joseph.
137th ANNUAL SOLEMN NOVENA
March 10-19, 2024: Daily Novena Masses, 7 p.m.
Newly renovated guest rooms at the Norbertine Center for Spirituality at St. Norbert Abbey are available to pilgrims. The Abbey is a 5-minute drive from the National Shrine of St. Joseph. To reserve a room, please contact us.
E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org | Phone: 920-337-4312
Join our e-mail list: Please click here
Everyone is welcome to leave prayer requests. We will remember your intention each Wednesday during our Novena Prayers to St. Joseph.
Please click here to complete our form for a prayer request.
Light a Candle
Since the late 1800s, visitors to the National Shrine of St. Joseph have lit candles symbolizing their prayers and intentions. For those unable to visit the Shrine, candle donations are accepted online for a candle to be lit for your intention. Your intention will also be included as part of our weekly Perpetual Novena in Honor of St. Joseph.
Please click here to complete our form to light a candle.
History of the Shrine
The tradition of the National Shrine of St. Joseph dates to 1888, initiated by Fr. Joseph Durin, MCS, pastor of then the French-Canadian immigrant parish church of St. Joseph in De Pere, Wisconsin.
It was at this time that the National Shrine’s weekly Perpetual Novena in Honor of St. Joseph and annual Solemn Novena in Honor of St. Joseph leading to the Solemnity of St. Joseph (March 19) were established, both of which continue today.
The original wooden church was struck by lightning and burnt in 1889; the next year it was replaced by the existing stone structure. In 1890, Fr. Jouet of the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart and Director of the Archconfraternity of St. Joseph visited the National Shrine, describing it as “the first shrine erected in America in honor of St. Joseph.” In 1892, the term “National Shrine of St. Joseph” came into use and has remained ever since.
On September 25, 1891, Pope Leo XIII issued the Bull of Canonical Coronation for the solemn crowning of the National Shrine’s Statue of St. Joseph. The statue was subsequently crowned by the Most Reverend Sebastian Messmer, Bishop of Green Bay, on May 8, 1982. It remains one of only 17 crowned Josephian statues in the world by papal decree, and the only in the United States.
The National Shrine was entrusted to the local missionary Norbertines, now the Norbertine Community of St. Norbert Abbey, on September 28, 1898, with Fr. Bernard Pennings, O. Praem., as director (later to become Abbot Pennings in 1925), the same day as the founding of St. Norbert Priory at the same site.
Following the dedication of the new St. Norbert Abbey in 1959, the National Shrine was temporarily moved to the crypt of the new abbey at 1016 N. Broadway, De Pere, next to the tomb of Abbot Pennings. It was returned to its original and current location in 2015. The National Shrine is frequented by thousands of pilgrims each year seeking St. Joseph’s powerful intercession and to follow his humble, quiet example in a humble, quiet place.
Michael Poradek, Ph.D.
Fr. Michael Brennan, O. Praem.