the seal of the medieval priory
Our Lady's Mirror

The heading on each issue of Our Lady's Mirror

The first Friends of Walsingham newsletter

Walsingham Review covers over the years
Our Lady's Mirror
and its successors
go to complete list of these journals with dates of issue

Our Lady's Mirror was created by Fr Patten to keep members of the Society of Our Lady of Walsingham in touch with one another. As well as being the means of telling them what was going on in Walsingham, it enabled him to circulate homilies and devotions, to acknowledge gifts, to accept intercessions and thanks to Our Lady, and constantly to appeal for money for many purposes - towards some new development in his restoration of the Shrine, or to support his many charitable works in and around the village, or simply to fund the Shrine's day-to-day expenses.

The Mirror was mostly written by Fr Patten himself. Not everything that he proposed and hoped for in its pages came to fruition; but in its words we still have an unmatched record of the early history and growth of the Shrine.
Fr Peter Cobb's book, Walsingham (1990), was compiled almost entirely from extracts and photographs from the Mirror and the subsequent Review.

Eextracts from the whole series are now on these pages, starting with the first Our Lady's Mirror in January 1926, to the last number, in 1959, a total of 109 issues. Everything that seems important and interesting is included**, and photographs and articles are listed. (Anyone wanting to have more details or a fuller version of any part is welcome to contact the archivist.) Devotions, small details of pilgrimage organisation, and most of the appeals for money are omitted.

[**Most of the occasional updates on the progress of the Sanctuary School, the Children's Home, the College of St Augustine and the Sisters are omitted, but not because they are unimportant, and they are far from uninteresting. However, to include them all on the website would double the size of these pages, and there are also some issues of confidentiality for those still living. Michael Yelton's biography of Fr Patten covers all these aspects in some depth. Anyone wishing to read the relevant passages from the Mirror can ask the archivist for copies.]

The extracts are in some cases paraphrases of the original. Obvious spelling mistakes are corrected, and explanatory notes are given within square brackets. More editing will appear within the earlier editions if relevant information is found later. At present only one photograph or illustration from each Mirror is shown, but in due course it will be possible to see copies of all other illustrations in each edition. Article titles are shown - we appreciate that these are sometimes brief and uninformative, but are included because they do help people who are looking for specific articles and authors.

The edition dedicated as a memorial number to Fr Patten is the last of 1958.

Each link in the right hand side panel is to the FIRST issue of a particular year of Our Lady's Mirror: from that page all others can be accessed. NB The Winter Number is the first of the year, not the last.

In July 1955 the Friends of Walsingham Occasional Paper had appeared alongside the Mirror to be circulated occasionally to pilgrims and others who were not members of the Society. The final issue, numbered 12, was published in March 1961. For years it has been thought that number 3 in the series was missing and appeals have been made for a copy. Everyone who has the series has number 3 missing also, and now the set of original proofs has been found, which also contains no number 3. There are a few other cases of Walsingham publications having similar errors of dating editions, so we assume that in this case there simply never was a number 3.

There were no photographs.

READ EXTRACTS FROM NUMBERS: 1 - 2 - 4 - 5 - 6 - 7 - 8 - 9 - 10 - 11 - 12

The first edition of the Walsingham Review [left] came out in June 1961, and has continued with just the occasional change in format: the latest edition can now be read online. The early numbers had no photographs.

READ EXTRACTS FROM NUMBERS: 1 - 2 - 3 - 4 - 5 - 6 - 7 - 8

In the Winter Number 1950 of the Mirror Fr Patten wrote:
"The heading of the Mirror has been used since we first produced this quarterly, and the design drawn by Miss Lily Dagless is a record of the days when the Shrine was in S. Mary’s and portrays the union of the three Parishes, Our Lady Spouse of the Holy Ghost for S. Mary’s, Little Walsingham; S. Peter’s, Great Walsingham and S. Giles, Houghton in the Dale. Now, of course, the Shrine is in its own Church and separate from the Parishes, but we think all our readers like the old design, a kind of sentiment. If, however, a new one is wanted, what about sending designs the same size and shape?" But no one did, and the heading - as above - remained for the life of the Mirror.

go to a larger version of the heading illustration

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