With the arrival of the month of June, the month honoring the Sacred Heart of Jesus, Walsingham Associates are reminded of that major celebration honoring Our Lady under her title of “Our Lady of Walsingham” will be held this Saturday, June 6th, at Saint James’, Cleveland, as we make pilgrimage to Mary’s shrine in our parish church. A Pontifical Mass will begin our celebration at 11:00 in the morning. The remaining days leading up to pilgrimage day may be spent in preparation for the renewing of the promises we made when last on pilgrimage last year, and returning to the vows we offered in becoming associates, bidding always Our Lady’s intercessions and aid in the keeping of them.
With the arrival of Trinitytide and our celebration of Trinity Sunday we are reminded of those two blessed feasts associated with the start of this season: Corpus Christi on the Thursday, the 4th, following Trinity Sunday, and the feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus on Friday, the 12th, of the following week. Mass at Saint James will be celebrated at 10:00 in the morning on Corpus Christi and 6:30 in the evening on the feast day of the Sacred Heart. The external solemnity of Corpus Christi will be celebrated as well on Sunday, June 7th, at 10:30 with Procession and Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament.
The whole point of Corpus Christi is to bring Jesus, Present in the Blessed Sacrament, out into the world; to manifest His Presence and show Him that He may be made known and present to those who perhaps have never known or seen Him. It is a joyful celebration radiant with the fullness of His Incarnate Life and many are the stories of those who first came to faith at Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament. I recall Norma Wilson, a woman of great faith and devotion of our congregation, relating to me that her first date with her future husband was at the time he brought her to Benediction at Saint James, after which she returned regularly until the time of her death. May our own faith be renewed and the joy of receiving the Sacrament fulfilled as we regularly “taste and see how gracious the Lord is” and always will be even unto the end of time.
Pilgrimage has been a “religious instinct” for centuries dating back to the formative Christian community and the recitation of the Rosary associated with pilgrimages made to shrines dedicated in honor of Our Lady has often been at the heart of one’s prayer and meditation. We need to rededicate ourselves to the recitation of the Rosary as many are doing in these days of religious decline. Pilgrimage shrines continue to grow as centers of devotion in attracting increasing numbers, many of whom are young. Joining our prayers to theirs as we intercede for the Church “….reveal her unity…guard her faith….preserve her in peace…” will avail much we are assured. Jesu mercy. Mary pray.
A wonderful guide to reciting the Rosary is the newly published, “A Walsingham Rosary” by Philip and Anne Gray. Philip Gray is a parish priest and member of the council of the Society of Mary and his wife, Anne a member of the council of the Guild of All Souls. I purchased my copy via Amazon. Even with postage from England it was not too expensive. I recommend it to you as one who takes serious the recitation of the Rosary as a devotional and meditational aid as well as a vehicle for intercession. Pray brethren.
Blessings in the Most Holy Trinity; Father, Son and Holy Spirit.