For England, 33 Days to Morning Glory

By Chris Sparks

In England, Catholics are seeking to rededicate their nation to the Blessed Virgin Mary — and they’re using 33 Days to Morning Glory by Fr. Michael Gaitley, MIC, as part of their preparation.

Catholics participating in the 33-day preparation for total consecration to Jesus through Mary will make their consecrations on March 25, the Solemnity of the Annunciation. Then, according to, on March 29, “at Mary’s Basilica in Walsingham, a very small group will be joining together to make The Rededication and it will be live streamed so that all can join together, if they wish,” at noon (GMT+1); 8 a.m (EST).

The origins of this act lie in the high Middle Ages.

Behold2020 recounts, “In 1381, England was dedicated to Mary by King Richard II and was 'set apart for her among the nations’” as her “dowry.” In 1399, the Archbishop of Canterbury wrote:

The contemplation of the great mystery of the Incarnation has drawn all Christian nations to venerate her, from whom came the first beginnings of our Redemption. But we English, being the servants of her special inheritance and her own dowry, as we are commonly called, ought to surpass others in the fervour of our praise and devotions.

That title has persisted through Reformation, the Elizabethan persecution of Catholics, and into modern times.

In 2017, with the agreement of the Catholic bishops of England and Wales, the Dowry Tour began — a national tour of a statue of Our Lady of Walsingham, traveling from cathedral to cathedral across all of England. This was to help prepare the faithful of the island nation for the two convergent acts of personal consecration and rededication of the nation to Our Lady. With the cooperation of Marian Press and her partner in the UK, Veritas Books, tens of thousands of free copies of 33 Days to Morning Glory were distributed in the course of the Dowry Tour. In a statement from their autumn plenary meeting in 2019, “The Bishops’ Conference [of England and Wales] supports the Rededication of England as the Dowry of Mary, to be offered by every Catholic on 29 March 2020, and to include a suitable Service of Rededication to be held in each Cathedral on that date as a commitment to a renewed evangelisation.”

According to the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales (CBCEW), on February 12, 2020, Pope Francis blessed the “Dowry Painting” of Our Lady of Walsingham, an image of a particular depiction of the Blessed Mother holding her Child attached to the Catholic National Shrine dedicated to Mary, the Mother of God, in Norfolk, England. Cardinal Vincent Nichols, Archbishop of Westminster; Monsignor John Armitage, rector of the Walsingham Shrine; and Amanda de Pulford, painter of the Dowry Painting, were Present. The painting will be at Walsingham for the Rededication of England as Mary’s Dowry on March 29, and then “will begin a journey to every Catholic parish in England.”

On Feb. 21, 2020, Catholics across England began their 33-day preparation for consecration, using Fr. Gaitley’s book, a process that will conclude on the Annunciation, formerly the feast of Our Lady of Walsingham and a few days ahead of the national rededication on March 29. recounts that according to the text of the “Pynson Ballad” (c. 1485), in 1061, Richeldis de Faverches, an English Catholic noblewoman in the village of Walsingham in Norfolk, England, prayed that she might perform a special deed as a gift to honor Our Lady. The Virgin Mary answered her prayer and led her in spirit to Nazareth, showing her the house where the Annunciation had occurred. Our Lady requested that a replica be built in Walsingham to commemorate the Annunciation for all time.

Take the measurements of this house and erect another one like it in Walsingham, dedicated to praising and honouring me. All who come there shall find help in their need. ... It shall be a perpetual memorial to the great joy of the Annunciation, ground and origin of all my joys and the root of humanity’s gracious Redemption (Pynson Ballad).

Let us pray the Rosary for England, beseeching Our Lady of Walsingham to reclaim the country for her own, especially as they and the entire world are facing such an unprecedented crisis.

Chris Sparks serves as senior book editor for the Marian Fathers. He is the author of the Marian Press book How Can You Still Be Catholic? 50 Answers to a Good Question.


Photo from Behold2020, provided free for use within publications.


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