"The Virgin changed everything," he said. "She created a sanctuary – the shrine has power – before she arrived it was a dark and dreary space." People began dropping by to bring her flowers and pay their respects.
Suddenly she disappeared one Easter. Before he could replace her, two brothers, employees of the local car-wash down the road, rang his doorbell. They took him to see the gift of the new Virgin, now secured in wet cement. The brothers sit on the steps at least once a week to sip beers and spend time with Mary. "We call them the ushers of the Basilica", he said.
story originally reported in the Los Angeles Times