The sun shone on WalsinghamFriday 11th May 2018
On Saturday over 500 pilgrims from the Diocese gathered at the National Shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham in Norfolk. This is the largest diocesan pilgrimage organised to the shrine in recent years.
The pilgrimage was led by Bishop John and he was joined by those travelling on coaches from Salford, Bolton, Pendlebury, Bury, Rochdale, Oldham and North and South Manchester. Pilgrims were blessed with sunshine in the beautiful shrine grounds.
The day began with a welcome from Bishop John, followed by the crowing of Our Lady’s statue to mark the month of May. The pilgrimage then processed along the Holy Mile saying the rosary as they continued. The day ended with a service of reconciliation and Holy Mass. Due to the numbers attending this year the doors of the chapel were opened and many of our pilgrims enjoyed the warm weather in the pews outside as Bishop John led the Mass.
The shrine of Walsingham is known as ‘England’s Nazareth’, was established in the reign of Saint Edward the Confessor in 1061. Richeldis de Faverches, lady of the manor of Walsingham, had a vision in which the Mother of God took her in spirit to Nazareth and showed her the holy house of the Annunciation and the home of the Holy Family. Our Lady requested that a replica of the holy house of Nazareth be built in Walsingham, that would serve as a perpetual memorial of the Annunciation. In December 2015 the Shrine was named a minor Basilica by Pope Francis, one of three minor Basilica’s in this country.
Thank you to all those who helped organise and went on the pilgrimage. We look forward to seeing you all again next year and we hope the weather is as good!