Shrine Church of St Walburge

St Walburge R C Church, Weston Street, Preston, Združeno kraljestvo

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The Shrine Church of St Walburge

St Walburge, born around a.d. 710 was the daughter of Saint Richard, king of Wessex, and niece of the great missionary martyr Saint Boniface. Educated at the monastery of Wimbourne, she became a nun and went to aid in the conversion of Germany beginning in 748.

St Walburge became abbess of the dual monastery at Heidenheim, Germany, where she died in 779. Amongst other patronages, she is particularly invoked against storms, rabies and hydrophobia. Her relics are kept at Eichstätt, and miraculous cures are attributed to oil exuding from the rock on which they were placed.

Shrine Church of St Walburge

Built by the great Catholic architect J.A. Hansom for the Jesuits from 1850 to 1854, the Church of Saint Walburge in Preston is a fine example of the Gothic revival style and features a daring and magnificent hammerbeam roof. The polygonal apse was added in 1873 by S.J. Nicholls. The 309-foot spire, dominating the Preston skyline, is the third tallest in the country. See more Catholic shrines and Basilicas in UK

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Although the church will no longer serve as a parish church in the strict sense, His Lordship the Bishop of Lancaster has ensured its future by designating it is a “shrine”.

The pastoral care of the Shrine has been entrusted to the Institute of Christ the King Sovereign Priest, a Catholic missionary society founded in 1990.

Speaking of this new initiative, Bishop Campbell says, “The generous and courageous response of the Institute to my invitation to come to St Walburge not only ensures the future of the church but I’m confident that – over time – the Institute will breathe new life into St Walburge and indeed for the local Catholic community.”

Shrine Church of St Walburge

The Traditional Latin Mass

The same thing that happens at every Mass: Jesus Christ offers to his heavenly Father the perfect sacrifice of his Body and Blood under the outward appearance of bread and wine, through the ministry of the priest.

Whatever rite or language are used, it is the same sacrament and the same sacrifice being offered. Participation in the Latin Mass is based above all on prayerful, interior participation.

Books containing all the texts in Latin with an English translation are available at the back of the church. The little bit of extra effort needed to follow along helps us to pay closer attention to the various parts of the holy sacrifice that is being celebrated. The priest celebrates Mass facing the altar – together with the people, in the same direction – as the leader conducting his flock towards Christ.

The Traditional Latin Mass

The same thing that happens at every Mass: Jesus Christ offers to his heavenly Father the perfect sacrifice of his Body and Blood under the outward appearance of bread and wine, through the ministry of the priest. Whatever rite or language are used, it is the same sacrament and the same sacrifice being offered. Our participation in the Latin Mass is based above all on our prayerful, interior participation.

Books containing all the texts in Latin with an English translation are available at the back of the church; please feel free to use them. The little bit of extra effort needed to follow along helps us to pay closer attention to the various parts of the holy sacrifice that is being celebrated. The priest celebrates Mass facing the altar – together with the people, in the same direction – as the leader conducting his flock towards Christ.

The overall structure of the ceremony is the same that you are already accustomed to: the first part of the Mass contains prayers of preparation and readings, then the sermon; the second part contains the Offertory (offering of the bread and wine to be consecrated), then the Consecration itself (we look up to adore Christ at the elevation of the host and chalice), then the communion rite and final blessing. If you have further questions about the meaning of the various aspects of the liturgy please do not hesitate to ask the shrine clergy, who will be happy to explain!

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Weekdays 8.00 am, Sunday 10.00 am

Saturday 10.00 am

The Shrine

According to Church law, a shrine is “a church or other sacred place which, with the approval of the local Ordinary [bishop], is frequented by the faithful as pilgrims by reason of a special devotion”. That is why “certain privileges may be granted to shrines when the local circumstances, the number of pilgrims and especially the good of the faithful would seem to make this advisable”. A shrine therefore is a church entrusted by the local bishop with a special purpose, as opposed to a parish church, which exists to serve Catholics who live in a particular territory.

The shrine Church of St Walburge here in Preston exists especially as a centre of Eucharistic Adoration within the diocese of Lancaster, as well as serving as a home for those who wish to discover the traditional Latin liturgy (sometimes called the ‘Extraordinary Form’).

A shrine, unlike a parish, does not have geographical boundaries. Geographically, the Shrine Church of St Walburge lies within the territory of the Sacred Heart Parish, but the shrine exists to serve all interested persons wherever they may live. The pastoral care of the Shrine has been entrusted to the Institute of Christ the King Sovereign Priest.

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