The dawn was beautiful; after a week of rain our annual pilgrimage to Walsingham looked like being very wet, but as we all headed off to our meeting place for the coach we were all greeted with sunny and peaceful morning.
The Catholic Deaf Association annual pilgrimage to Walsingham is always a day filled with many blessings. Deaf people from around the country all journey to Walsingham to share in worship and fellowship. This year we were joined by Fr Norbert Fernandes and his parishioners from Welwyn Garden City. Friendships going back to school days are once again renewed, news is shared, photos are passed around, candles are lit in memory of those no longer with us and petitions for those who are unwell or unable to travel are placed in the Slipper Chapel.
Do we have joy in our hearts. Are we happy Catholics? Mary’s fiat was without question, despite the worries and fears she must have held in her heart, but she said “Yes”. Peter McDonough lead us through a reflection as we asked ourselves what is my response to God, do I say “Yes” and say it with with reluctance or with joy in my heart?
After lunch and time for private prayer in the Slipper Chapel we returned to the church for Mass celebrated by Bishop Paul Hendricks, Mgr Philip Shryane, Fr David Quiligotti, Fr Norbert Fernandes and Fr Robin Ellwood. Mgr Philip Shryne invited us to look at a picture. Did we see the old woman or the young one? And do we see the Jesus who has died or the Jesus that has risen to new life? When we only see half the picture we only see half the story. We know about God’s love and we need to show that to others; to live out the Gospel so everyone can see the full picture of God’s love.
And so we returned home with joy in our hearts and a renewed strength to our faith to share God’s love to those who we meet wherever or whoever they might be.
For photos and video clips of our day at Walsingham please look us up on Facebook. https://www.facebook.com/pg/wddservice/photos/?tab=album&album_id=627523804114240.
Why not join us next year on Saturday 19th May when we will once again be heading off to our English Marian Shrine.