Inspired by a rallying pre-pilgrimage itinerary message from Fr Ian Evans QHC, SChLJ, the Chaplain-General, eighteen pilgrims, under the auspices of the Commandery of Wales, made the 250-mile journey on Friday 22nd July 2016 to the Shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham.  Six of the group were first time Walsingham pilgrims.

After Vespers and supper, the pilgrim group gathered in The Orangery for an illustrated lecture on the history of Walsingham given by the Commander of Wales, Dr David Woolf KLJ, a Member of the Order of Our Lady of Walsingham.

Fig 1 the Commander’s lecture.

Following the lecture the Interim Administrator, Fr Philip Barnes, treated the pilgrims to a splendid summer evening’s drinks party on the lawn of the College.

Fig 2 the Interim Administrator’s drinks party.

Early the following morning the pilgrims were given a guided tour of the Shrine grounds by Tessa Hobbs, the Landscape Gardener who was responsible for the total redesign of the grounds in 2004 and its subsequent management.

Fig 3 tour of the Shrine grounds by Tessa Hobbs.

Tessa explained how the grounds had been designed to balance the need for a peaceful space for quiet, private contemplation, with the facility to accommodate large liturgical celebrations.

Fig 4 pilgrims walking the serpentine path that bisects the Shrine grounds.

Later in the morning, Canon Brendan Clover, ChLJ MMLJ, a Chaplain of the Commandery, celebrated Mass in the Holy House for the Anglican pilgrims.

Fig 5 Fr Brendan Clover at the altar of the Holy House in the Shrine Church in Walsingham.

After lunch the pilgrims gathered in the village car park, next to the site of the medieval Lazar House (leper hostel).  In glorious summer sunshine we made our way along the Holy Mile to the Slipper Chapel at the Basilica of Our Lady of Walsingham, following the route of the former Fakenham to Walsingham branch line.  We paused briefly at the old village railway station, now converted to an Orthodox chapel, to recall the first pilgrimage to Walsingham organised by Fr Alfred Hope Patten in 1922.

Fig 6 the Chaplain and the Commander deep in erudite conversation!

Having entered through the Year of Mercy Jubilee Holy Door at the Slipper Chapel, we were welcomed to the Basilica by the Rector, the Rt Revd Monsignor John Armitage, who presided at Commandery Vespers, assisted by Fr Brendan and Dr Woolf.

Fig 7 Commandery Vespers in the Slipper Chapel.

In December 2015 the Holy Father, Pope Francis, promoted the National Shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham to the status of a Minor Basilica.  One of the privileges of a Basilica is that it is allowed to display a papal ombrellino, which displays the heraldic arms of the Pope and the arms of the Basilica.  In March 2016 Dr Woolf arranged for the arms of the National Shrine, which are derived from the ancient Priory of Walsingham arms, to be adapted to incorporate the insignia of a Basilica.  These have been woven onto the ombrellino that is on display in the Basilica.

Fig 8 the ombrellino of the Basilica of Our Lady of Walsingham.  The arms of Pope Francis are on the right, and the arms of the Basilica are shown on the left.

Vespers concluded with devotions at the image of Our Lady of Walsingham, after which the Commander presented the Rector with a new flag of the arms of the Basilica.  This was a gift from the Chaplain, Fellows & Students of Newman Hall (Cardiff University Catholic Chaplaincy), the Cardiff Oratory in Formation, and the Sisters of Nazareth.  The Commandery of Wales uses Newman Hall in Cardiff as its base.

Fig 9 the Commander presents the new flag of the Basilica Arms to Rector.

Monsignor Armitage invited the members of the Commandery present to accompany him to the Basilica flagpole where he ran up the flag for the first time.

Fig 10 Canon Brendan Clover, Monsignor John Armitage and Dr David Woolf prepare to run up the new Basilica flag for the first time.

Fig 11 the Basilica flag.

Fig 12 Commandery of Wales pilgrims with Monsignor John Armitage at the Basilica of Our Lady of Walsingham

The return journey along the Holy Mile to Walsingham was concluded with a refreshing beverage outside Walsingham’s famous Bull Inn.

Fig 13 pilgrims at the Bull Inn, Walsingham, after completing the Holy Mile.

After supper the Commandery pilgrims joined the other two hundred weekend pilgrims for the traditional Saturday evening candlelit procession of the image of Our Lady of Walsingham around the Shrine grounds.

Fig 14 Preparing for the procession of the image of Our Lady of Walsingham, Canon Brendan Clover sat in quire with Fr Philip Warner, Cardinal Rector of St Magnus the Martyr, London.

Fig 15 The Interim Administrator and a Guardian of the Shrine, Fr Philip Barnes, and Dr David Woolf, a Member of the Order of Our Lady of Walsingham, escort the image of Our Lady of Walsingham.

Fig 16 pilgrims singing the famous Walsingham Pilgrim Hymn with great gusto during the candlelit procession.

Fig 17 pilgrims enjoying a post-procession debrief in the Bull Inn.

The following morning, Sunday, pilgrims worshipped at Mass at the Anglican Parish Church of St Mary or the Catholic Church of the Annunciation.  The Commandery pilgrimage concluded with the sprinkling liturgy at the well next to the Holy House in the Shrine Church.

All agreed that this Commandery pilgrimage was an amazing and rewarding mixture of the sacred and secular.  As the Chaplain-General, Fr Ian Evans, wrote in our pilgrimage itinerary, "When all is over and the return journey beckons, may you depart refreshed and revitalised in faith.  May that blessing and revival of Spirit, renew within you all, your dedicated service to the Military & Hospitaller Order of St Lazarus of Jerusalem."  We look forward to future pilgrimages to Walsingham, England’s Nazareth.  We fervently hope there may be an opportunity to organise a Grand Priory Pilgrimage to Walsingham.

Chev. Dr David Woolf KLJ, Commander

(Photographs: Peter E. Woolf)


02/08/2016 by Secretary-General | No comments yet, click here to write one.

Posted in General News  /  

News from Purulia

A new water purification unit has been installed at the Leprosy Hospital of Believers’ Church of Purulia, India, sponsored by the Order of St Lazarus and organised by Ramakrishna Vivekananda Mission, India. The money was raised by members of the Commandery of John of Gaunt. Samir from Purulia writes that it has been of enormous benefit for leprosy patients and also staff members and local residents, especially since the temperature is currently around 50⁰C in that area.

01/06/2016 by Dr Marios adamou | No comments yet, click here to write one.

Posted in General News  /  

New Downloads

The following documents are now available in the Downloads section of the Members' area

List of Self-Styled (and therefore unrecognized) Orders of Chivalry

Questions & Answers about the Order

11/05/2016 by Secretary-General | No comments yet, click here to write one.

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Spring National Vigil & Investiture of the Grand Priory - Belmont Abbey, April 2016

This event was hosted by the Commandery of Wales whose Commander, Chevalier Dr David Woolf KLJ, is to be congratulated on his hard work and attention to detail, which contributed in no small part to a successful occasion.

Nearly 70 members and guests attended the Vigil at 7.00pm on Friday 15th April in the Abbey Church at Belmont, during which 9 postulants made their vows of dedication before the Chaplain-General, Colonel The Revd Fr Ian Evans QHC, SChLJ, MMLJ, and all were led in meditation upon The Beatitudes. The Grand Prior, The Most Honourable the Marquis of Lothian PC, GCLJ and the Bailiff, H.E. The Chevalier Charles Holloway, GCLJ, KMLJ were in attendance. Afterwards, a dinner at Hedley Lodge, formerly part of the Benedictine Community’s buildings, fortified the inner man.

The next day at 11.00am the Service of Investiture was held, over 90 members and guests attending.

Members of the Order processed in to the Abbey Church to the solemn “Choral” from the Suite Gothique by Leon Boellmann. Eight Chaplains attended the Chaplain-General in the sanctuary and the Abbot of Belmont, The Rt Revd Dom Paul Stonham OSB, was the preacher. Music was provided by The Newman Hall Schola under their Director of Music, Dominic Neville MA. Anthems sung were: ‘O taste and see’ by Ralph Vaughan Williams (1872-1959), between the First Reading and the Gospel, and ‘Thou knowest, Lord, the secrets of our hearts’ by Henry Purcell (1659-95) before the Intercessions. The Gospel was read by The Revd Fr John Owen SChLJ, Chaplain of the Commandery of Wales, and the The Revd Fr Ray O’Shea TD, ECLJ, Chaplain Emeritus of the Commandery (and a former Chaplain-General of the Grand Priory) conducted the Intercessions. During the hymn preceding the Ceremony of Investiture, a collection was taken for the work of the Benedictine Community at Belmont.

The Investing Officer was The Grand Prior, assisted by The Bailiff and The Secretary-General, Chevalier Gareth Vaughan KCLJ. The Marshal was Chevalier Peter Salt, KCLJ.

The following postulants were admitted to the Order and invested with the decorations appropriate to their rank:

Rhys Llewelyn Jenkins (Cdry of Wales)                

Esquire (ELJ)                      

Daniel Llewellyn Blair Jeremy (Cdry of Wales)                

Esquire (ELJ)                                      

Graham Smith (Cdry of Cumbria)           

Member (MLJ)                                 

Emilio Antonio Chiquito (Cdry of Mersey)              

Member (MLJ)                                                 

Charlotte Natasha Kemp (Cdry of King Offa)          

Member (MLJ)                                                 

Haydn Jones Rees (Cdry of Wales)                

Officer (OLJ)                                      

Craig Frederick Williams, (Cdry of Wales)                

Officer (OLJ)                                                      

Neil Frank Buffin (Cdry of Wales)                

Officer (OLJ)                                      

Jeffrey Keeney Morgan (Cdry of Wales)                

Officer (OLJ)

The following members of the Grand Priory were promoted and invested with the decorations appropriate to their rank:

Charles Anthony Blair Jeremy (Cdry of Wales)                

Member (MLJ) to Officer (OLJ)

Donald Eric Preddy (Cdry of The Marches)    

Member (MLJ) to Officer (OLJ)

Alan Thomas Howls (Cdry of The Marches)    

Officer (OLJ) to Commander (CLJ)           

David Lindsay Watkins (Cdry of Wales)                

Officer (OLJ) to Commander (CLJ)

Alice Anne Howls (Cdry of The Marches)    

Officer (OLJ) to Commander (CLJ)

Anthony William Jeremy (Cdry of Wales)                

Knight (KLJ) to Knight Commander (KCLJ), of Grace

The Very Revd Dr Gareth Adrian Jones (Cdry of Wales)

Assistant Chaplain (AChLJ) to Chaplain (ChLJ)

The Revd Prebendary William Edward Victor Ward (Cdry of The Marches)

Chaplain (ChLJ) to (Senior Chaplain) (SChLJ)

The following were given Awards and invested with the appropriate decorations:

Mrs Dorothy Dervin       

Admitted to the Companionate of Merit in the rank of Member (MMLJ)

Alan Littlewood (CLJ), (Cdry of John of Gaunt)  

Bronze Medal of Merit (BMLJ)

Dame Erica Mary Austin DLJ, (Cdry of Wales)               

Bronze Medal of Merit (BMLJ)

The Grand Prior presented the following members with their Patents of Appointment:

Alan Thomas Howls CLJ                

Appointed to be Commander of The Marches

Keith David Johnson CLJ               

Appointed to be Commander of Avalon

The service concluded with the ‘Regina Coeli’ and a blessing from the Abbot of Belmont, after which the National Anthem was sung and members processed out to the ‘Toccata’ from Boellmann’s Suite Gothique.

A celebratory glass or two of prosecco preceded lunch at Hedley Lodge at which the Abbot of Belmont was the Grand Prior’s guest of honour. Following the Loyal Toast and the toast to the Grand Master, the Grand Prior entertained those present with a speech both amusing and instructive, before proposing the toast to the Order.

Gareth Vaughan KCLJ                                                     Secretary-General – Grand Priory of England & Wales

Photographs below










Alan Littlewood CLJ and Dame Erica Austin DLJ, waiting to receive the Award of Bronze Medal of Merit. Behind them, postulants Daniel James and Emilio Chiquito.










The Grand Prior, Bailiff and members during the service.









Chaplains in the Sanctuary. Left to Right: Revd Fr John Owen SChLJ, Revd Louis Baycock ECLJ, Very Revd Dr Gareth Jones ChLJ, Revd Justin Parker AChLJ.









Postulant Craig Williams (OLJ) delivers the First Reading.