Monday, 7 May 2012

Sevenoaks Ordinariate Pilgrimage to Walsingham

Friday 13th April
This was our second Pilgrimage to Walsingham as Catholics and we had a full group of 40 people.
After Mass and a blessing for pilgrims we set of for the wonderful Holy place of Walsingham. As usual we had a comfort stop at the small oasis in the woods where we enjoyed all the pleasures that Barton Mills has to offer.
As we neared Walsingham Fr. Ivan led us in singing the Walsingham Pilgrim Hymn, I think we should enter Britains got Talent next year.
On arrival in Walsingham we did our First visit to the Holy house, after which we made our way to our accommodation, as usual we had very good rooms.
After shrine prayers and supper we all made our way to the Orangery for a meeting and talk by the Anglican Shrine administrator Bishop Lindsay Urwin, who spoke in depth about how good it was to see an Ordinariate group at Walsingham.

Saturday 14th April
                        After breakfast we made our way to the National Shrine and the Slipper Chapel where we had the Stations of the Cross with Fr. Ivan reading the intercessions. This was followed by the 12:00 Mass and lunch.  After lunch we walked the Holy Mile back to the village reciting the Rosary. In the afternoon we met in the Anglican Shrine where Fr. Ivan performed the Sprinkling, thanks must go to Bishop Lindsay for letting us perform the Sprinkling at a different time. After supper we went to the Catholic Parish Church in the village for adoration, benediction and a candle lit procession to the outdoor image of the Blessed Mother which is in the grounds of the Catholic accommodation. I was here last week on a personal pilgrimage when they were getting this area ready, tonight it looked really beautiful, the shrine of our Lady was lit up and had rosary beads hanging from her arms it was very atmospheric.
Later a group of us walked to Great Walsingham to join in with the Orthodox Easter Vigil. This was one of my personal highlights of the weekend and we were made most welcome.

Sunday 15th April
                        Divine Mercy Sunday – Today started with breakfast and Mass in the Catholic Parish Church. After lunch we walked back along the Holy Mile to the Slipper Chapel. Then we joined the Divine Mercy Festival which was led by Mgr Andrew Burnham of the Ordinariate.
It was a very moving afternoon.
We then walked along the Holy Mile for the last time back to the village and our last visit to the Holy House. Then unfortunately it was time for us to climb aboard our coach for the journey home.

Another fine spiritual weekend was enjoyed by all so here’s to next year.
My thanks go to Fr. Ivan who led the group and made sure that everybody was spiritually refreshed.

Anyone wishing to join us for next years pilgrimage will be most welcome, we always go the weekend after Easter and for the less mobile we have taxis to transport you between the two shrines.
We only book 40 places so please let me know early if you wish to go next year as some people this year left it to late and the places had all been filled.

Monday, 12 March 2012

a good friends advice

Today I have enjoyed catching up on old times with a good friend of mine who has also given me some useful advice.
Due to the present economic climate things haven’t been going to well at work and consequently I may well find myself in the position of having to look for another line of employment after 26 years.  I have a couple of options which I am weighing up but at the moment the future certainly doesn’t look orange.
My friend suggested taking what is due to me and look for an alternative line of employment, something should come along within a few months, but I am not so sure, I would hope so, but if it doesn’t then I could be in trouble.  Staying where I am is starting to bring me down with the worry, I have been told to keep praying and something will turn up, I just hope they're right.
So in the mean time if anyone has any thoughts I would appreciate them, but just at the moment the light at the end of the tunnel seems to be getting further away.

Saturday, 14 January 2012

One Year Old

A year ago, approx 60 clergy and 1000 lay people took the brave decision to leave the Church of England and join the Ordinariate.
For the laity this meant leaving behind friends & buildings, for the Clergy they had to give up much more, their homes, their salary, job security, pensions and much more.
The road hasn’t been smooth or plane sailing. There have been, and still are people who don’t want the Ordinariate to succeed and seem to take pleasure in highlighting the difficulties, but despite all this the Ordinariate is here and will get stronger and stronger.
From small acorns giant oaks grow.
There are more people joining this year in England and Wales, a new Ordinariate has been set up in America with Canada and Australia to follow.
So tomorrow if you can, you can help celebrate the First Anniversary of the erection of the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham at St. James, Spanish Place, London. at 5pm.
The Sevenoaks Ordinariate are having a 10.30am Mass at St. Johns the Baptist, Westerham.
The year has been emotional; we have joined the Catholic Church and made new friends.
The Sevenoaks Ordinariate is going to be the first Ordinariate group to have a pilgrimage to Walsingham and be greeted by Bishop Lindsay (there are only 4 places left on this Pilgrimage so if you want to go please get in touch quickly).
Everyone should be happy for each other, no matter what decisions have been made ultimately there is one God, one church.
We should all love each other no matter what path we have taken or choose to take.
Here's to the next year and many more.