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Our Lady of Seneca Street

Our Lady of Seneca Street can be found at 847 Seneca Street.

Our Lady of Seneca Street can be found at 847 Seneca Street.

You can see how playwright Tom Dudzick let his imagination go wild over a simple shrine dedicated to the Blessed Mother on Seneca Street in Buffalo. He wrote and directed a play called “Miracle On South Division Street” that is showing now at the Kavinoky Theatre at D’Youville College. The play is clever and well acted but a bit of the “kick in the pants” to devote Catholics and traditional Polish Mothers out there. But I also certainly got the message that we are not always who we think we are, we are all more alike than we think, and mothers cannot control the lives of their children. It was done with humor and creativity. The true story is one of a barber named Joe Battaglia who in the 1950’s saw a vision of the Blessed Mother outside his window and was so moved he vowed to build her a shrine. The shrine was well maintained by Battaglia until his death. In the 1980’s the City of Buffalo purchased the shrine with the intention to tear it down. Fortunately a group of preservationists bought the shrine and is now maintained by those who are interested in continuing the shrine that Battaglia built. You can see how Dudzick made up a doozie story based on the statue not looking like a traditional Blessed mother with a modern day look to her in her clothes, hair and crown. I need to thank Dudzick for creating the play or I would not have been inspired to drive down Seneca Street and see for myself the actual shrine in which the play is based. RIP Mr. Battaglia and thank you for your devotion and conviction and for making Seneca Street a little more scenic.

How interesting that directly behind the shrine is the parking lot that the City of Buffalo owns. NOw you know where to go if you are looking for emergency parking in the snow.

How interesting that directly behind the shrine is the parking lot that the City of Buffalo owns. Now you know where to go if you are looking for emergency parking in the snow.

3 Thoughts on “Our Lady of Seneca Street

  1. Rose Battaglia on April 2, 2014 at 8:20 am said:

    Love that you have kept my grandfathers story alive.. oh how I wish I could have gone to see this play <3

  2. Rose Battaglia on April 2, 2014 at 8:23 am said:

    He called her patrona imperatice

  3. DLauber on June 8, 2016 at 6:42 pm said:

    I’ve been looking up family history and discovered a card copyright 1950 with the story of the Patrona. Didn’t know it was actually a story here in Buffalo.

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