This September and October, the UK will welcome the relics of St Bernadette, which will travel from the Upper Basilica in Lourdes to every Diocese in the UK, including the Archdiocese of Southwark. The invitation to host the relics was issued by the Shrine of Lourdes to the Bishops of England and Wales.
Canon Christopher Thomas, the general secretary of the CBCEW, recently likened the
visit of St Bernadette's relics to that of Saint Thèrése of Lisieux to Britain in 2009: the visit of St Bernadette's remains to our shores is likely to be equally popular in 2022.
This generous offer was made, mindful of the fact that many have been unable to travel internationally to Lourdes during the pandemic. This important autumn tour will serve to remind UK Catholics of the importance of our pilgrimage in our lives: journeying for spiritual reasons to find truth, purpose and direction.
It is hoped that many of the charisms of Lourdes will accompany the tour of the relics, such as healing of body and mind. calls to specific vocations, including consecrated life, and for pilgrims to be refreshed in spirit and renewed in faith.
The relics will visit the Archdiocese of Southwark in two locations: the first visit has already taken place in St George's Cathedral, Southwark, The next will take place at Aylesford Priory in Kent.
Prayer and Mass Schedule
Monday 24th October
7.00 pm: Mass
Veneration of the Relics after the 7pm Mass until 9pm
Tuesday 25th - Thursday 27th
12 noon: Mass
3.30 pm: Exposition & Benediction
5.00 pm: Mass followed by Torchlight Procession
Veneration of the Relics: 10 am – 11.45 am; 2 pm – 4.45 pm
Friday 28th October
12 noon: Mass
Veneration of the Relics: 10 am - 11.45 am
Mass at 5 pm on 25th October will be celebrated by the Apostolic Nuncio, Archbishop Claudio Gugerotti.
Mass at 12 noon on 26th October will be celebrated by Bishop Paul Hendricks
10.30 am – 11.30 am & 2.30 pm – 4.00 pm
5 toilet blocks (3 ladies 2 with disabled access )
2 mens both with disabled access
Refreshments Tearooms open
Monday: 10.00 am – 6.30 pm
Tuesday – Friday: 10.00 am – 5.00 pm
Very large car parks for coaches and cars
Cathedrals and churches hosting St Bernadette’s relics will have a fixed capacity for visitors. To ensure the comfort and safety of pilgrims, all visitors will be asked to register to attend with a dedicated timeslot. Further details of how to book your place will be shared on this page in the coming weeks. Please save the dates for now.