In May 1846, nineteen bishops petitioned the Pope to proclaim Mary as Patroness of the United States under the title of the Immaculate Conception, 8 years before the promulgation of the dogma of the Immaculate Conception. In 1847 Pope Pius IX granted the petition and named Mary our country’s patroness. In 1914 Pope Pius X granted permission to build a Marian sanctuary. The Basilica of the National Shine of the Immaculate Conception is the largest Roman Catholic Church in the US and all of North America and is among the top 10 largest churches in the world. The Basilica is Byzantine-Romanesque in style, was built in the form of a Latin cross and has over 70 chapels and oratories.