Our Lady Returns to England

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by Bradley Eli, M.Div., Ma.Th.  •  ChurchMilitant.com  •  April 3, 2020   

500,000 participate in Walsingham rededication

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TRANSCRIPT

Walsingham is where Catholics are rededicating England to Mary as "Our Lady's Dowry."

Roughly half a million people joined the rededication ceremony March 29 online. 

Catholics being banned from attending in person owing to the Wuhan virus was somehow reminiscent of the mandated destruction of the shrine in the 1500s under King Henry VIII.

But why Walsingham? England has dozens of shrines devoted to Our Lady. 

Walsingham isn't the oldest, dating back only to 1061 when Mary appeared there to a pious English noblewoman.

And it was at Westminster Abbey that King Richard II first dedicated England to Our Lady as "Her Dowry."

But it was to Walsingham that British kings historically would go seeking Mary's protection and guidance.

Even Henry VIII visited the shrine frequently before actually ordering its destruction in 1538.

Four centuries later, the first Catholic Mass would be offered at Walsingham by Cdl. Francis Bourne on the Feast of the Assumption in 1934. 

Bourne led a 10 thousand-man pilgrimage to the Marian shrine at Walsingham, declaring it to be England's National Shrine of Our Lady.

The great Marian Pope Leo XIII seems to have foreseen the spiritual significance of Walsingham.

When signing the rescript in 1897 for the restoration of the Shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham the saintly pope declared, "When England returns to Walsingham, Our Lady will return to England." 

The major difference now however is, England's fate seems to hang on the piety of Catholic peasantry rather than on its kings.

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