The Archbishop of Westminster, the Most Reverend Vincent Nichols, will preside at a Solemn Mass on Saturday 26 March at 2pm, in Westminster Cathedral to celebrate the anniversary of the founding of the Shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham.
This year Walsingham celebrates the 950th Anniversary of the vision of the Lady Richeldis and the founding of the Shrine in 1061. The Mass marks the beginning of six months of celebrations ending on the Feast of our Lady of Walsingham on Saturday 24th September.
The Shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham was established in 1061 when Richeldis de Faverches prayed to undertake some special work to honour Our Lady. According to the Pynson ballad (c1485), Mary, in answer to her prayer, led her in spirit to Nazareth and showed her the house where the Annunciation occurred, asking her to build a replica in Walsingham to serve as a memorial.
The Holy House was built and a religious community took charge of the foundation. Walsingham went on to become one of the greatest Shrines in Medieval Christendom. Today, the Shrine attracts 100,000 pilgrims during the pilgrimage season.
For more information on the Shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham, see: www.walsingham.org.uk/