Yet again the sun shone down on Our Lady of Glastonbury as around 1,400 people from our diocese gathered in her honour and come on pilgrimage to her shrine. People came form far and wide – from London to Swindon, Middlesbrough and Scotland to Salisbury… and even a couple from St Lucia! Though I’m not sure they came only for the pilgrimage…
It is such a wonderful witness to our town here in Glastonbury that amid all the ‘alternative’ beliefs, the old faith and devotion to Our Lady continues. She stands here in the shrine day after day, and watches the world turn. And she will be here to welcome us next year (12th July) and every year, until her Son comes again.
I look forward to welcoming you again next year, but in the meantime, why not come down and say hello, as individuals or groups. We will do everything we can to make you welcome in our Lady’s name.
You can watch Bishop Declan’s Homily on the right of this page and see many pictures of the day below.
Glastonbury Pilgrimage 2019
The first pilgrimage to Glastonbury in modern times was in 1895 to celebrate the beatification of Abbot Richard Whiting, on the anniversary of his martyrdom 1539 when thousands of pilgrims from all over the country arrived by train and climbed the Tor where Mass was said. Pilgrimages took place after both World Wars by pilgrims in thanksgiving for their survival.
Every year since the early 1950’s the Clifton Diocesan Glastonbury Pilgrimage has been held in Glastonbury, when the then Bishop of Clifton requested the Knights of St Columba to organize and run a diocesan pilgrimage. For many years groups from each of the Deaneries walked to Glastonbury carrying a very large wooden cross.
In this first podcast in the series, we hear from Parishioner David Baldwin who has written many books on Pigrimage, and he explains why Pilgrimage is so important to our faith:
In the second podcast in the series, we hear from Kim Woolmer, the Lay Administrator and Shrine Manager at The Shrine of our Lady of Glastonbury. She explains the chequered history of the Shrine and how it is now an important pilgrimage site.