All from Common I of the BVM (F179-F192) except:
Collect for the feast proper:
Almighty Father, whose holy Son Jesus Christ was born of a pure and
Sinless Virgin, grant that like as we do pray once more for the
renewal and conversion of England, so may she whose dowry England
is, provide her intercession with thy son, our Lord Jesus Christ,
who liveth and reigneth with thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost,
ever one God, world without end. Amen
Invitatory: Let us keep Holy Day in honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary,
mother of our Lord: * And Patron Mother of England
For the Legend
The Shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham was the most renowned sanctuary
of Mary in the whole England. It sprang into fame, in the year of
Our Lord 1061, upon the report that the Mother of God had appeared
to the Lady Richeldis, an inhabitant of the Manor of Walsingham,
belonging at that time to Saint Edward the Confessor. Richeldis,
Lady of the Manor, received a vision in the fields near her home.
The Blessed Virgin Mary appeared to her and carried her in spirit to
Nazareth. There, Our Lady showed her the little house where the
Annunciation took place, and directed her to construct an exact
copy. In confirmation of this vision, a spring of water suddenly
appeared at Richeldis’ feet. The Lady Richeldis obeyed, and so a
chapel, after the model of the Holy House at Nazareth, was built
beside the spring in honor of the mystery of the Incarnation. Here
was enshrined the venerable image of Our Lady of Walsingham.
By God’s blessing Walsingham grew into a great center of prayer.
Pilgrims came not only from distant parts of England or Scotland but
from all over Europe, to pray before the venerable image of God’s
Mother in the Holy House, and to drink from the waters of the spring.
England’s Nazareth, as it was called, became famous for miracles of
healing. In 1538, at the beginning of the English Reformation under
King Henry VIII, the Shrine was closed by force and destroyed. The
image of Our Lady was publicly burnt and the Holy Well blocked up
with rubbish. The Shrine Church disappeared so completely that its
exact site was forgotten. But although the miraculous Image of Our
Lady was burnt, and the buildings all razed to the ground, the
devotion could not be wholly stamped out. The faithful continued to
visit Walsingham, even in the darkest days.
Then, after four centuries of neglect, the Shrine at Walsingham was
restored once more, largely through the dedicated efforts of the
Anglican Vicar of Walsingham, Father Alfred Hope Patten. In 1922 a
reproduction of the ancient Image from the medieval seal of the
Priory was made and set up in the Parish Church, and the first public
pilgrimage since the sixteenth century came to the Shrine and the
Holy Places. Ten years later a piece of land was acquired in the
village, and the Holy House was rebuilt. When the workmen were
clearing the ground for the foundations, they unearthed an ancient
well, together with some medieval foundations, corresponding closely
to the measurements of the Holy House built by Richeldis. Thus, it
seems that Father Hope Patten and his helpers were guided by God to
rebuild the Holy House on exactly the same spot as that on which it
once stood. On October 15, 1931 the image of the Mother of God was
transferred from the parish church to the restored Holy House, and
there it has since remained. In 1938, the Shrine Church was greatly
enlarged. Since then an ever-increasing number of pilgrims –
Anglican, Roman Catholic, and Orthodox – seek this ‘Holy Land of
V/ Pray for us, thou Virgin of Walsingham;
R/ That we may be worthy of the Promises of Christ.
Antipons at Lauds and the hours:
1)Mary, Mother of the King of Kings appeared unto Richeldis* and
shewd unto her the Holy House.
Psalms of Sunday.
2) Rejoice, ye people of England for your land hast been sanctified by
the Blessed Virgin.
3) O seek the Lord at Walsingham* and quench thy thirst.
4) O all ye saints [of England] come ye unto the Holy Place [of
Walsingham]* and bless ye the Lord.
5) O Mary, Queen of Heaven and of England praise ye the Lord* and
bring us unto the majesy of thy son.
Ant. Ben.: The King in his lust defied the church* and razed the
Shrine of Our Lady.
Ant. Mag.: O God raise thou up again devotion to thy daughter* Our
Lady of Walsingham.
These propers were taken from The Divine Office Yahoogroup.