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/ 5 June 2019

Spirited young people serve at Walsingham pilgrimage

St Martin's Ruislip Serving team

Recently, a serving team from St Martin’s Ruislip served at the Walsingham National Pilgrimage, where the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Most Revd and Rt Hon Justin Welby, preached during Mass.

This was one of the youngest teams to ever serve at such an occasion. It was part of a celebration entitled “Mary said: ‘Do whatever He tells you’”.

The weekend started on Sunday 26th May with Compline and Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament, followed by an all-night vigil that concluded with a morning Benediction. The Principal Celebrant at the Concelebrated Mass was the Rt Revd Philip North CMP, Bishop of Burnley and Master of the College of Guardians.

During his sermon, Archbishop Justin described Mary as being “God’s place-maker”, who made a place in her body for the Incarnation, and for God in her mind and heart. He reminded everyone that Mary welcomed the gift of being the Theotokos – the God-bearer.

He added, that “she did not consider this in any way to be something for herself, but she existed for others – for you and me – and that she still prays for us.”

Commenting on the weekend, the Revd Canon Simon Evans, Vicar of St Martin’s Ruislip, said:

“We have about 30 young people in their teens who are at the heart of the church’s worshipping life, either because they are in one or other of the serving teams, or because they are in the robed choir that sings at the 9.15am Solemn Mass on Sundays. It was a great privilege to be asked by the Shrine to provide a serving team for this year’s National Pilgrimage.

“When I asked our head server if he could sound out the younger servers, to see if we could raise a team, I was delighted by the response and we sent a team of eight. They were very excited to be taking part in such a large event with the Archbishop of Canterbury and a congregation of about two thousand pilgrims.”

Following the Eucharist and Procession through the village, Benediction was given by the Rt Revd Tony Robinson, Bishop of Wakefield and Visitor to the Shrine.

With family activities and the Ministries of Healing at the Shrine, the Pilgrimage concluded with Solemn Vespers in the Church. More photos of the weekend can be found here.

About Matthew Hall

Matthew Hall was the diocesan Communications Assistant, before going on to become a Franciscan Friar with the Society of St Francis. Matthew seeks to protect the environment. He adores hiking and being outdoor in the country or by the sea in nearly all weather. He dreams of hiking to Rome and Jerusalem.

Read more from Matthew Hall

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