Our walking pilgrimage to Walsingham has been inspired my the many other traditional walking pilgrimages. But while we are still only finding our way, in our third year, I dare say that our food already surpasses most of the others.
Something else which was noteworthy is that we were able to have Mass at the beginning of the day on the first two days, i.e. before breakfast. I understand that Mass used to be held on the Chartres Pilgrimage before leaving the camp, on the second day, but the numbers of pilgrims involved made it impractical to serve breakfast after Mass before marshaling everyone to leave.
On Friday and Saturday we had Missa Cantata, on Sunday, in Walsingham, we had Solemn Mass. All were accompanied with chant, with a schola composed of pilgrims, and led by Matthew Schellhorn. We did pretty well, and as the pilgrimage continued Matthew added the use of drones to psalm verses, a very interesting, even exotic, effect.
That's Tony Pead with his back to the camera above. As I've noted before, the Christus Rex pilgrimage in Australia, which he is involved with, was another important inspiration, and he came all the way to England to take part in the LMS Walsingham Pilgrimage.
Every time I visit Ely Cathedral, as we do to say prayers for the healing of schism and the conversion of heretics on the first morning, I find more to depress me about the destruction wreaked on the place by Protestantism. This is a small carving of the judgement of a soul, in what was the Cathedral's Chapter House. The scene is a conventional one so it is not difficult to see, even in its ruined state, what is going on. The chap with wings on the left is St Michael. The person in the middle would have been Our Lady, interceding for the poor sinner. The person on the right, near the front, is the soul being weighed in some scales; you can see the other scale, with a box in it representing the soul's good deeds. There is one face in this scene which has not been defaced: that of the devil, at the bottom, doing his best to drag the soul down to hell.
Christian dreadeth Christ that hath a newer face of doom,
And Christian hateth Mary that God kissed in Gallilee...
As always our Mass in Oxburgh Hall's private chapel is one of the highlights of the Pilgrimage. The house, a fantastic moated and crenelated manor house, preserved the Faith through all the ages of persecution, and when it became possible the Bedingfeld family built a chapel for the more worthy celebration of Mass. The Reredos is a late Medieval one from the Continent. The Bedingfelds are very hospitable and we had breakfast there as well.
We visited the priest-hole they have, hidden under a loo, and marched off on the second day's walk.
Comes up along a winding road the noise of the crusade...
Fr Bede has a number of good posts on the pilgrimage, done on the go: here and here, here and here, or just go to his blog and scroll down.
To be continued.