Our Lady of Walsingham

Discussion in 'Church History' started by JoeLaughon, Nov 12, 2018.

  1. JoeLaughon

    JoeLaughon Active Member Anglican

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    United States
    Reformed High Anglican
    Thoughts on the restoration of this shrine/practice?

    Though I admire some of the effects of the Oxford movement (the restoration of some reverential medieval adiaphora, images in churches, weekly/daily communion, reemphasis on the sacraments and apostolic nature of the Church), I do not care for their revisionism and aping of Rome's latest fashions.

    That being said, I can't help but think there is nothing objectionable in Walsingham, it seems the most likely/least unlikely Marian apparition as it seems to be mainly the English noblewoman's vision or ecstasy of the Holy Family, and it could serve as a useful teaching tool of the example of Our Lady and the Incarnation in general.
    Peteprint likes this.
  2. Peteprint

    Peteprint Well-Known Member Anglican

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    High-Church Laudian
    Amen brother, to all that you stated in your first paragraph. As for Our Lady of Walsingham, here is the legend as I understand it:

    "The first account of this shrine appears in a ballad published by Richard Pynson in the late 1400’s. The story goes that in the year 1061, during the reign of St. Edward the Confessor, Our Lady appeared in a dream to Richeldis de Faverches, a wealthy young widow in the area of Norfolk , northeast of London and near the North Sea . Richeldis had prayed for guidance in her desire to honor Our Lady in some special way, and she saw the dream as the answer to her prayer. Our Blessed Lady took her in spirit to Nazareth and told her to build a replica of the Holy House in Walsingham as a memorial to the Annunciation and, thus, the Incarnation, so that 'all who beseech her help shall find succor there'." http://catholicism.org/lady-walsingham.html

    I am very skeptical of all Marian apparitions for the following reasons:

    1. I see no precedence in scripture for such things (the appearance of Moses and Elijah during the Transfiguration were not of the same type).

    2. The earliest Fathers don't write of them.

    3. They are typically unreasonable, or contain reported sayings on the part of the apparition that are contrary either to scripture or to how we would expect either Christ or Mary to speak.

    Why would Mary, in this case, take Richeldis "in spirit" to Nazareth so that she could build a replica of the house Jesus grew up in on English soil some 1000 years after the Ascension, particularly in furtherance of her cult?

    My personal opinion, and I mean no offense to those who disagree, is that the cult of Mary in the Roman Church is excessive and full of superstition and quite a bit of false theology. I find it sad to see such practices in Anglicanism, but it is what it is.
    Shane R likes this.

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