from Our Lady's Mirror, Spring 1955
Priory of Our Lady of Walsingham and S Margaret


Tuesday, May 10th [1955], will be remembered here for many a long year, for on that day the Bishop of Norwich blessed and installed the first Mother of this new community.

Seven years ago Father Patten went to see the Reverend Mother of St Saviour’s Haggerston, and said he had come to ask her to let us have Sisters to help at the Shrine and in the parish. Mother said "it is impossible" and then, after a pause – "but we must do it!" So once again, as before at Walsingham, the impossible was made possible and Sister Margaret was sent with a small band of Sisters and their work at the Sanctuary was started. The aim from the beginning of the restoration of the Shrine in 1922 was to have a community of Sisters in Walsingham, and now after many years of expectation and waiting this Convent and its noviciate has been established. As the Sisters at Haggerston Priory "hived out" from East Grinstead, so from Haggerston the new house has been established, and another convent within the Congregation of St Margaret’s, East Grinstead, founded by Dr Neale a hundred years ago, has been founded. May 10th was a great day and it was not without a full throat one heard the Sisters sing out the anthem of welcome "O Great Priest" as the Bishop, vested in cope and mitre, entered the wooden chapel built over the new High Altar on the site where soon the permanent chapel is to stand.

Among those present were the Mother-General of East Grinstead and the Reverend Mothers of St Saviour’s Priory, Haggerston; St Margaret’s Convent, Aberdeen; and of the American House, as well as the Sister-in-Charge of the Convent at Haitai.

During the next month (June) it is hoped that the foundations will be put in for the permanent Priory House and in due course the Chapel and Cloister. Their buildings are to be on land adjoining the precincts of the Shrine to the North West. Your prayers are asked for Mother Margaret and her daughters in this new great venture of faith.

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