It was lovely to see so many online attendees at the High Mass during the Julian Festival on 7 May this year, and especially lovely to see the service for two of the four new Companions of Julian admitted over the festival weekend. With thanks to Father Richard for his permission to do so, we made a video available via our YouTube channel until 1 June, which allowed people unable to attend or watch on the day a chance to view it.
On Sunday 8 May, the parish team posted their thanks to "friends all over the world for the kindness of their prayers for us today, the anniversary of the Shewings which Julian of Norwich received in May 1373. We, in our turn, have prayed today (as every day) for all who come on pilgrimage to St Julian's and find in this holy place an assurance of the divine love. As we praise our God for his goodness to us in past years, we ask him to continue to bless the work done here in his name."
They also shared these words from the sermon at St John's Timberhill that morning:
"The revelations are in touch simultaneously, as one writer says, with ‘the vulnerability and suffering inherent in being human, as well as with a life of unconditional affirmation and security in God’. Her experience confirms for her, as it bears witness to us, the truth of St Paul’s promise in unfolding the Easter mystery for the Colossians: ‘If you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth, for you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.’
After recovering from her sickness, this young woman determined that the life which she and we have, hidden with Christ in God, demanded something of her, something which she would give for love. In her case, it took the form, more common then than now, of taking up residence in a small room attached to a local church: a small church on the wrong side of the tracks then as now, near King Street, founded in the eleventh century and dedicated to St Julian. She stayed there in seclusion and prayer for the rest of her life, recording the revelations she had received and her theological reflections on them in two texts which together would become the first book in the English language written by a woman, and today countless people from around the world come to our parish in the steps of the loving woman whom we call Julian of Norwich."