The Shrine dates to the Moorish period and turned into a Christian place of worship during the first Spanish period (1309–1333). A statue of the Virgin and Child was installed in this shrine in the 15th century. The marble altar was donated by Blessed Pope Pius IX. In the early 1970s, the building underwent new developments. The statue of Our Lady remains in the Shrine to this day. In 1979 Pope John Paul II officially approved the title of Our Lady of Europe as Patroness of Gibraltar, and subsequently, the shrine was restored. For the 700th anniversary of the devotion to Our Lady of Europe, the shrine received the Golden Rose, a rare gift given by the Pope Benedict XVI in May 2009.