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In 1925, three years after the Shrine of Our Lady Walsingham was re-established in the Walsingham parish church of S. Mary's, Fr Patten set up the Society of Our Lady of Walsingham in order to keep in touch with the first pilgrims - and with it he established a regular newsletter Our Lady's Mirror. As well as being the means of telling them what was going on in Walsingham, it enabled him to circulate homilies and devotions, to acknowledge gifts, to accept intercessions and thanks to Our Lady, and constantly to appeal for money for many purposes - towards some new development in his restoration of the Shrine, or to support his many charitable works in and around the village, or simply to fund the Shrine's day-to-day expenses. In 1931 - the year the new Holy House and Shrine Church was built - a distinct society for priests was established; currently, the 2,000 Priests Associate of the Holy House of Walsingham constitute the largest priestly association in the Anglican Communion. Membership of the Society now stands at 6,500. Prayer was always an important part of "Keeping in Touch" and still is today; Our Lady's Mirror has become The Walsingham Review; and The Walsingham Partnership is a powerhouse of members who support the Shrine financially. Find out more below.
This section contains information and printable or on-line application forms (depending on the chosen method of payment) for all the categories of membership of The Shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham. These application forms are for new members only.
The current categories of membership are:
Society of Our Lady of Walsingham
Over 6,500 pilgrims are members of the Society, supporting the Shrine through their daily prayers.
Society members undertake to say the Angelus everyday as a way of remembering the Shrine in their prayers. There is also the opportunity to join The Living Rosary (see below) which offers a more extensive prayer commitment. Society members are remembered each day at Shrine Prayers.
The joining donation is £10 (single membership) or £15 (married couple) to cover the first year's membership - badge, mailings etc.
Thereafter we ask for a minimum annual donation of £10 per year (single membership) or £15 per year (married couple) to cover the cost of the Walsingham Review, etc. (See above and see also CELLS)
The Walsingham Partnership
Building a Shrine for the Future - 2006 is a very special year for The Shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham. On October 15th, 1931 the image of Our Lady was removed from Walsingham parish church and installed in the newly built Holy House. 2006 is therefore be the 75th anniversary of the restoration of the Shrine as we know it.
The Walsingham Partnership was launched in 2004 to facilitate the growth of the Shrine in the next 75 years by financially assisting specific development projects. Members of the Partnership are invited to a Partnership Pilgrimage weekend and Dinner in February each year and their names recorded in the Partnership Book.
The minimum subscription is £10 per month.
The Partnership is remembered each day at Shrine Prayers.
The Living Rosary of Our Lady of Walsingham
Members of the Society and Priests Associate are invited to join THE LIVING ROSARY - a worldwide pilgrim link which undertakes to participate regularly in the rosary as recited at Shrine Prayers every day.
Each person who joins the Living Rosary is allocated a mystery and asked to say that particular decade of the rosary on the same day that it is prayed in the Shrine, and for the same set of intentions.
Information and an application form can be printed off from this site. (see below.) Alternatively contact the Membership Secretary by post, telephone or e-mail to request an application form.
But whenever you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you.
The US Friends of Our Lady of Walsingham
The aim of this organisation is to make it easier for American Christians to become members of the Society or Priests Associate of the Holy House.
In 1931 Fr Patten restored the Shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham as the image was translated to the Holy House. In that very same year, with Fr Patten's support, the National Shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham was set up in Grace Church, Sheboygan, Wisconsin. It is remarkable that friendship has existed between the Shrine and many Episcopal Christians for so many years.
It was to build on this friendship that the Priest Administrator of the Shrine visited the United States in October, 2003. As well as preaching at Regional Walsingham Festivals in four east coast cities, he announced the launch of a new group, the US Friends of The Shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham.
The aim of this organisation is to make it easier for American Christians to become members of the Society or Priests Associate of the Holy House. The US Friends is recognised in US law and has tax exemption and a registered office at St Paul's, K Street, Washington DC. The existence of this group will make it far easier to for us to stay in touch with our US membership.
2013 -Please note that the US Friends of OLW is currently under review. For the present all enquiries, subscription renewals and membership applications should be made using this website. Secure PayPal facilities are available to make payments and donations. Please contact the Membership Secretary (firstname.lastname@example.org) for more information or the event of difficulties.
Cells of the Holy House of Our Lady of Walsingham
Priest and pilgrim groups (members of the Society) who meet regularly in their local church to celebrate Mass and to offer intercessions on behalf of the Shrine, arrange fund-raising activities and prepare for their annual pilgrimage to Walsingham.
Currently over 160 Cells are active throughout the UK, USA and Australia.
All cells have a Priest Associate as their Local Superior and at least 7 (from 2002) members of the Society. They are asked to observe the feasts of the Annunciation of the Lord (March 25th) and Assumption of Our Lady (August 15th), together with the remembrance of the translation of the image of Our Lady of Walsingham from the Parish Church to the present Shrine in 1931 (October 15th.) On these days in particular, local Cells are asked to pray for the work of the Shrine and to give thanks for its witness to the mystery of the incarnation. If possible the Cell may meet more frequently to offer Mass for the Shrine and for the objects of the Society:
● To honour Mary, the Mother of God and to deepen faith in the incarnation of our Lord.
Our Lady's Lamps and Candles
Parishes and individual pilgrims have for many years requested and maintained dedicated lamps and candles to ask Our Lady of Walsingham to pray for a particular or general intention. These lamps and candles burn in the Holy House, around the Shrine Church or in holy places within the Shrine grounds.
The Chantry Book
S. Edward's Chapel - the pages of the Chantry Book, inscribed with the name of the dead, are turned every two days. The book is displayed in S. Edward's Chapel (which is at the west end of the Shrine Church, close to the well.) Individual names are remembered and prayed for on the anniversary of their death at the early morning Mass in the Shrine Church. Since the restoration of the Shrine the Chantry Book has been the accepted way of remembering the names of faithful pilgrims, now departed. We ask for a single donation (currently £30) for each entry. New entries are regularly added to the book and those who have requested an entry may ask the duty Sacristan for a special viewing. If you require further information please contact the Membership Secretary at email@example.com.
Telephone: 01328 820582 Fax: 01328 824206