Renovations complete at Shrine of Our Lady Martyrs

AMSTERDAM — DANVANN, a local-service, disabled veteran-owned, commercial and residential general contractor, recently announced that renovation is complete at the Jouges Lodge at the Friends of Our Lady of Martyrs Shrine in Auriesville.

Construction took place March through June 2021. The shrine is considered to be the holiest grounds in North America where thousands of pilgrims, religious leaders, and visitors come each year.

Jogues Lodge now consists of two separate suites, Goupil Suite and Lalande Suite, as well as a common kitchen, laundry, and seating area. This building provides accommodations for priests either on private retreat or here on these holy grounds providing Sacraments to pilgrims. Jogues Lodge, which was once the original Rectory and museum at the Shrine, has sat empty and unused for nearly a decade.

“We are grateful to bring this back to life and not have this sit empty and unused. It feels like this made the grounds feel whole again,” Executive Director, Julie Baaki said in a news release.

Because the building had not been used for many years, the shrine leaders considered other options like new construction or a “tiny house.”

“When Dan came up, he was confident he could salvage this building,” Baaki said in the release.

She explained that this proved to be incredibly special as the building overlooks sacred grounds that provide inspiration for priests to carry on their vocation in priest-hood.

“We are extremely grateful for the opportunity to create a fresh space for visitors of the shrine to enjoy. This building holds a rich history that was crucial to reclaim for future generations,” DANVANN owner Dan Roth said in the release. “We understand and appreciate the complexity of the grounds we were on- which made this work feel even more impactful.”

“Crews would come in work ridiculously hard and leave at the end of the day without disruption to the grounds, or the pilgrims. [The] guys were very knowledgeable, kind,” Baaki said in the release. “Dan was great at keeping us fully informed every step of the way. We are just so thrilled with this space and we’ve already had three priests come stay here on retreat and they are flabbergasted that this is the space they get to stay in on retreat.”

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To learn more about the project or make a donation to the shrine visit

By Patricia Older