Friday, 3 June 2016

Goodbye and Welcome - Chaplain

After two years as our Chaplain, Fr Michael Manning, O.Carm will be leaving for pastures new to assist in Aylesford Priory (our sister shrine). We are very pleased to welcome Fr Brendan Grady, O.Carm as his successor. Thank you Fr Michael for all your work with the National Shrine of Saint Jude, and welcome to Fr Brendan who we are looking forward to working with.

Later this month, we will introduce Fr Brendan on our blog, but first, Fr Michael wanted to say some final words:

"Well, the Summer Celebration is over for another year and this year I was not a part of it; except through prayer. I hope that everyone had a good Summer Celebration with Fr. Damian.

As is usual with religious orders I was asked if I would take up another appointment and I agreed to this and left Faversham on the 16th May.  I shall miss the Shrine of Saint Jude, the pilgrims and visitors, and the gardens.  But I will also miss the team of which I was a part: Matt, Rachael and Kevin.  I think we gelled as a team and got on well as friends; something you cannot always guarantee.  

My new appointment is at The Friars, Aylesford.  Not far away; only 35 minutes down the M2 so once I have settled in I hope to come down and visit now and again.

One of the things I did especially enjoy was the writing of letters to all the people who had asked for advice or wanted a little support with a difficult situation.  I hope that those who received letters from me found them to be helpful and a comfort in times of pain.  Here in Aylesford we also have a Blog called A Prayer in Stone and I will be taking up the writing of entries for that again, now that I am in Aylesford.  The photo below is the statue of Our Lady of the Assumption, the patron of the Carmelite Province which graces the shrine at Aylesford.

Thank you for all your support and prayers.  God Bless you and I’ll keep the Shrine and the Guild of Saint Jude in my prayers."

Thank you, Fr Michael. Saint Jude, pray for us.

Wednesday, 1 June 2016

Photo of the Month - June 2016

The National Shrine of Saint Jude repository has started to receive a bit of freshening up. Last week, we replaced the old boards with new display boards on the Repository wall. Each display board is full of information on the Shrine, our three societies, the Guild of Saint Jude, and much more. 

This is only phase one of the changes in the Repository, please watch this space for more...

If you would to donate towards our work at the Shrine, please visit our on-line donation site. Thank you.

Tuesday, 31 May 2016

Appeal from the Catholic Association Pilgrimage to Lourdes

Appeal from the Catholic Association Pilgrimage to Lourdes

The Catholic Association (CA) Pilgrimage to Lourdes has over a hundred years’ experience of bringing pilgrims to the shrine each August. At the heart of the CA are the volunteer helpers (medical and non-medical) making sure that the assisted pilgrims (sick and disabled) have the best possible week in Lourdes. The volunteer helpers and the assisted pilgrims are at the forefront of the CA’s mission in Lourdes, making sure everyone has a good and holy week.

This month, the CA has initiated a campaign to seek potential volunteer-helpers (non-medical and medical), and assisted pilgrims (the sick and disabled) who may be interested in coming on Pilgrimage to the shrine. Our Pilgrimage takes place on 19 – 26 August 2016. Possible funding is available to new volunteer helpers and assisted pilgrims. Our volunteer helpers do not have to be medically trained – the CA needs lots of non-medical volunteers to help too.

Bishop Paul Hendricks, Auxiliary Bishop of Southwark and chairman of the Catholic Association, stated "..each year, it is important to provide as many opportunities for new volunteers and new assisted pilgrims to come on our pilgrimage to Lourdes, and we welcome anyone interested in joining us on pilgrimage to the beautiful shrine of Our Lady.”

All volunteers are invited to a preparation day before the pilgrimage to prepare each of them for the work in August. There are also many working opportunities available as a volunteer helper: working in the mixed teams; working in the dining room; or on ceremonies; and so much more.

If you would like to come on pilgrimage with the Catholic Association in August, please note that the deadline for sending in your application form has been extended to 15 June. Please visit our website, or visit to download forms, or alternatively please contact Tangney Tours on 01732 886666 for more information.

Sunday, 29 May 2016

Summer Celebration photos

The photos below are from the Summer Celebration Mass, which was celebrated by Fr. Piet Wijngaard, O.Carm. The Homily was given by Fr. Damian Cassidy, O.Carm, Prior at Aylesford.

Thank you to all the friends of Saint Jude who visited us yesterday. Thank you too to the Faversham community, Fr. Damian for joining us, our volunteers and music group for all their help, and the Shrine Office team for all their work before, during and after.

 Saint Jude, pray for us.