This article discusses the way in which the living quarters of a famous priestess from the Afro-Brazilian religion Candomblé were turned into a heritage site. The Memorial de Mãe Menininha do Gantois shows that the form of the museum might be understood as a particular "language" of status and prestige. The site therefore allows us to discuss what happens when new actors in the public sphere pick up, appropriate, and transform this language of "museumification." Although the profane dimensions of "museumification" are hard to miss, we argue that in the case of the memorial this language does not at all diminish the sacred nature of this site, but actually articulates it in a new way. © Bloomsbury Publishing Plc 2013.