parish pilgrimage to the Shrine of Our Lady of
Walsingham took place this year from Monday 22 to Friday
26 May, with 12 pilgrims.
The timetable started off with a Mass and Blessing of
Pilgrims in St Matthew’s Lady Chapel at 9.30am. Then
setting off in private cars, with a lunch stop en route,
we arrived at Walsingham in the early afternoon. First
stop was the Slipper Chapel, the Roman Catholic Shrine,
where we said a short prayer. At the Anglican Shrine we
had our First Visit to the Holy House at 4.30pm,
assembling at the Shrine Church after depositing cases
in rooms, and we all went in together. Afterwards there
was free time to unpack and look round the Shrine and
the village before we met up again for Evening Prayer
followed by Supper in the refectory at 6.30pm. At 8.00pm
we all met in the Milner Wing lounge for a social
Each day had a structured programme of events, with
pilgrims free to join in as much or as little as they
liked – attendance at everything is not compulsory!
Every day we had Buffet Breakfast from 8.00am, Morning
Prayer at 9.00am and a Mass. Most afternoons after Lunch
there was free time until Evening Prayer at 5.30pm,
followed by Supper. On Tuesday afternoon we had
intercessions in the Holy House, where we prayed for the
Parish and all the congregation who had asked for our
prayers. On Wednesday afternoon we followed the Stations
of the Cross around the Shrine grounds. Certain days had
certain Shrine events – on Tuesday evening the
Sprinkling at the Well followed by Ministries of
Healing, Laying on of Hands and Anointing and on
Wednesday a Pilgrim Mass in the morning and in the
evening the Candlelight Procession of Our Lady followed
The Shrine exudes a feeling of peace and it’s easy to
sit in the lovely gardens and enjoy the quietness and
the birds singing and not be conscious of other people.
This year the weather was wonderful and we could spend
time in the gardens.
An important part of the Pilgrimage, going as a parish
group, is the social aspect and it gives us a chance to
get to know each other better and let our hair down.
With free time every day there’s a chance to walk round
the village, visit the Slipper Chapel again, go to the
Norton Room, travel outside the village to the sea or
other towns nearby, or just have a rest. And of course,
there’s the local pub, where we all congregated for our
last evening’s social gathering.
Friday arrived and our last morning before departure was
celebrated with the Last Visit to the Holy House. All
liturgies throughout the week are laid out in the
Pilgrimage Manual which we all individually have with
us. A Parish Pilgrimage is arranged every year from St
Matthew’s, normally in May or June. Next year’s
Pilgrimage will be from Monday 21 to Friday 25 May.
Please find below a selection of photos.