Tuesday, 12 August 2014

Feast of Blessed Isidore Bakanja

Happy Feast of Blessed Isidore Bakanja. At the National Shrine of Saint Jude, we have a beautiful icon of this holy man (see below).

Blessed Isidore Bakanja was born in 1888 in a fishing community in the Congo. He was baptised on 6 May 1906 and from that day he wore faithfully the Carmelite scapular.

He was working in a plantation run by a colonialist who did not want Christianity to be spread. By wearing the scapular and showing everyone his faith, Blessed Isidore was flogged several times. In 1909, the superintendent of the business tore off the scapular and severely beat him. He died on 15 August 1909 as a result of the wounds inflicted in "punishment" for his faith and which he bore patiently while forgiving his aggressor.

He was beatified by Pope John Paul II on 24 April 1994.

Monday, 11 August 2014

Green Pilgrimage to Canterbury - 3 October

***Update: If you are joining us, please arrive at the Shrine for 8.30am***

The National Shrine of Saint Jude are very pleased to announce that we are going to take part in a Green Pilgrimage on 3 October 2014. 

The Green Pilgrimage Network (GPN) is an initiative of the Communities and Partnerships Framework of the Diocese of Canterbury.   The Diocese joined the GPN last year, and is now developing an ecumenical partnership and associated action plan to highlight all the pilgrim places and ways in the Diocese, which exist alongside Canterbury Cathedral.  The GPN is a “global network of pilgrim cities and sacred sites around the world intending to be models of green action and care. The vision is that pilgrims, and the places that host them, will be cleaner, greener, and leave a positive footprint on the earth.” There are over 20 places in the GPN, worldwide and many of the world’s major faiths are part of this network.

Catherine Lloyd, Green Pilgrimage Network Project Officer said “We are delighted to be working with the National Shrine of St Jude in Faversham, as one of the many pilgrim places in Kent and the Diocese of Canterbury.  The Shrine is a good example of a modern sacred site, that has developed more recently, and which we are keen to promote alongside more historic routes and pilgrim destinations.  We look forward to greeting people making a “mini-pilgrimage” from Faversham as part of the GPN Canterbury Partnership launch on 3rd October.”

Fr Michael Manning, chaplain to the Shrine said, "This is all very exciting and we are looking forward to taking part in October. The National Shrine of Saint Jude is very proud to be part of this Green Pilgrimage Network".

The GPN partnership is using social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for the events around the launch and the associated Pilgrimage Weekend taking place in Canterbury  on 3-5th October, and are encouraging everyone who has photos, short videos, anecdotes, prayers and experiences to share to post them tagging with  #canpilgrim, so that they can all be gathered together online and shared.  

The National Shrine of Saint Jude would love to hear from you if you're interested in joining us on this special day. Please let the Shrine office know via shrineoffice@stjudeshrine.org.uk or 01795 539 214.

If you join an annual pilgrimage, we would love to hear about it, or even if you make a particular journey for personal reasons – in memory of a loved one perhaps – it would be good to hear your story, if you don’t mind sharing it of course! 

tag,  #canpilgrim on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram