Every year 400,000 to 500,000 people make a pilgrimage to the picture of the Blessed Mother of God in the tranquil village near Ziemetshausen, in the district of Guenzburg. Thus, Maria Vesperbild is the largest destination for pilgrims in Bavarian-Swabia.
Formerly, a field chapel stood on the site of the current pilgrimage church, which was built in 1650 to celebrate the end of the Thirty Years' War. This chapel was extended in 1673 and replaced in 1725 by the first pilgrimage church. In 1754 a further, the present pilgrimage church, was consecrated in 1756. The miraculous image of the Sorrowful Mother of God has been in this place since the construction of the field chapel. Directly from the sanctuary, a Way of the Cross leads to the Fatima Grotto, built in 1957 in the nearby forest and restored in 2011.
Meanwhile, there are more than 1,000 votive tablets with thanks and testimonies to the witnessed help of the Mother of God. On Pentecost and the Assumption of the Virgin Mary on 15 August, the longest lights procession in Bavarian-Swabia takes place here each year from the pilgrimage church via the Stations of the Cross, to the Mariengrotte. The pilgrimage church can be visited daily from 7 a.m. to 8.15 p.m. Information on church tours can be found at www.maria-vesperbild.de .