Thousands of Catholics from all parts of 1.ancashire gathered at Woodend on Sunday to take part in the second annual pilgrimage to the grotto of Our Lady of Lourdes at Cleator.
They came from Liverpool, Blackpool, Manchester, Bootle, and from all parts of the North of England, in special excursion trains.
The grotto was made by local unemployed men from stone from the neighbouring quarries, and in it was placed a. I replica of the statue of Our Lady at Lourdes. In addition there is a Calvary and a statue of St. Teresa of Lisieux. The shrine was opened and consecrated ten years ago by the Bishop of Lancaster. Since then its fame has steadily grown.
On the North Regional programme this week a talk will be heard on the history of the shrine and the pilgrimage, given by Mr. W. Newell, a local journalist.
Pilgrimage to Oldest British Church
On Sunday last a pilgrimage was made to a small church overlooking the desolate Essex mud-flats.
The church was St. Peter's-at-the-Wall, Bradwell-on-Sea, built by St. Cedd in A.D. 654 on the foundations of the Roman fortress of Othono. It is said to be the oldest church in the country.
A sermon was preached by Fr. Clement Tigar, S.J., outside the restored church. He recalled the work of St. Cedd and otherl Anglo Saxon saints and told the pilgrims to pledge themselves anew to Christ's cause.
St. Cedd and the Anglo-Saxon saints planted the seeds of the Catholic faith in England, the Reformation Martyrs began the work of restoring Catholicism, and we today should by our good living and by good example influence the masses and bring England once more completely to the Faith.