A small, but select group from our College travelled to Walsingham to join the Leeds Diocesan Walsingham Pilgrimage.
Our pilgrimage to Walsingham was undertaken to celebrate where in 1061, Our Lady appeared to a Saxon lady called Richeldis de Faverches. Our Lady showed her the house in Nazareth where Gabriel had announced the news of the birth of Jesus and asked her to build an exact replica of that house in Walsingham. Walsingham then became known as England's Nazareth and became the most important pilgrimage destination in our country before Henry VIII intervened.
We set off from school in the rain on Friday 16th September and the rained accompanied us throughout our journey and continued while we put up our tents. Once camp was assembled we went for a look round the town of Walsingham and then joined the community at the Anglican Shrine to pray the Rosary. One of our students commented that the prayers they said, were the same as Catholics say!
Surviving a night of rain and strong winds –we woke up on the Saturday to pools of water inside our tents. After breakfast we made for the diocesan pilgrimage at the England’s Catholic Shrine to Our Lady. Mass with Bishop Marcus followed, at which one of our students Ramandeep read the First Reading and the rest of our group took up the collection.
After mass, we picnicked and then walked the Pilgrimage Procession – with our group leading the procession carrying the Processional Cross. We also carried the statue of Our Lady of Walsingham, ending up in the grounds of the ruined Walsingham Abbey. Here we joined our diocese, praying Night Prayer of the church; during which Mrs Hymas did the reading. Benediction followed and concluded our pilgrimage. All that was left, was the long drive home.