Dowry House Retreat invitation – Sr. Theresa Reflects:
Dowry House is the Shrine’s Retreat House. It is situated in Walsingham village, just opposite the ancient Abbey grounds.
As well as hosting groups and themed retreats, there are plenty of opportunities this summer to simply enjoy a few days break at Dowry House, combining aspects of pilgrimage, retreat and holiday. The Sisters are always happy to advise on what’s going on and things you can see and do in and around Walsingham.
Here’s what a typical weekend break could look like.
Join the Sisters for 4pm Evening Prayer or simply arrive in time for the 6.00 pm house tour and 6.20 pm supper at Elmham House. If you are new to Walsingham, a great place to start on the first evening is the nearby Anglican shrine where they have an excellent information centre and interactive map, as well as a modern replica of the Holy House. At 8.45 pm the Sisters pray Night Prayer in the beautiful Dowry House chapel. Our residential guests can enjoy times of quiet Adoration here, day or night, throughout their stay.
After a good night’s sleep (we are reliably informed that the beds are very comfortable!) enjoy a cooked or continental breakfast at nearby Elmham House before joining the Sisters for sung Morning Prayer at 9am. There’s a choice of Masses you can attend if you wish and, having a packed lunch for the day means there is great flexibly for getting out and about. In the village we have the stunning 12th century Walsingham Abbey grounds – the perfect place for an afternoon walk – and of course to pray at the site of the original 11th century Holy House. Visit the Museum of the Blessed Virgin Mary and be inspired by the collection of medieval pilgrim badges. If you like sacred art, a visit to the Orthodox chapel (guided tours available) is well worth it. We are of course just one mile from the Catholic Shrine and Basilica. The walk along the Pilgrim Way is very pretty and, as well as afternoon devotions and the possibility of a procession, they also have a lovely café and gift shop! The main Pilgrim Mass is at 12 Noon each day.
Since Our Lord spent a lot of time by the sea of Galilee, we are sure a visit to nearby Wells-the-Sea (five and a half miles. Accessible by car or bus will provide inspiration for your reflective time.
Back in Walsingham village, we have Evening Prayer at Dowry House and often there are services you can take part in at Church of the Annunciation, such as the moving torchlight processions in honour of Our Lady. At night, you might like to visit the Adoration chapel for some precious quiet time with Our Lord.
After breakfast, Morning Prayer and a nice coffee break, we suggest heading down to the Shrine for the midday Mass where the liturgy is sure to be beautiful and uplifting to celebrate the Lord’s Day.
If you would like to walk down to the Shrine, feel free to ask the Sisters for a lift afterwards so you will be back in good time for the delicious Sunday roast!
The Sisters will be praying for you throughout your stay and if you would like a listening ear at some point over the weekend, simply let us know – we would be delighted to help.
We look forward to welcoming you to Dowry House and invite you to check our upcoming retreats and quiet breaks on the Dowry House website www.dowryhouse.org.uk/events
May God bless you!