St Frideswide Pilgrimage takes place in slimmed down form

The St Frideswide Pilgrimage will take place again this year after its successful inauguration two years ago.

Around 500 people from across the Diocese of Oxford took part in the inaugural event in October 2019, although sadly the pandemic made it impossible to repeat the experience last year.

On Saturday 16 October people are being invited to walk to the Cathedral, which houses the Shrine of St Frideswide, the patron saint of both the city and the University of Oxford. October is designated ‘St Frideswide-tide’ when a number of special events and services are held in the Cathedral to mark the Saint’s day on 19 October.

Pilgrims are asked to book tickets to join one of five different routes to the Cathedral. The walks range from 1.5 to 9 miles, and each will be led by an experienced pilgrim guide, with pauses for reflection along the way. There will be ‘prayer stations’ around the Cathedral encouraging reflection on the theme of Psalm 23 ‘The Lord is My Shepherd’. Pilgrims are invited to pray and light candles at the Shrine.

After tea in the Great Hall there will be a 45-minute service led by the Bishop of Oxford, with music sung by senior members of our girls’ choir, the St Frideswide Consort. 

There are also some tickets reserved for those who are unable to walk the distance but still want to participate. Overall, however, the numbers of tickets for the event have been capped to ensure that everyone can take part in safety.

Quote: ‘Christians have felt drawn to pray at the Shrine of St Frideswide for centuries, and our modern-day Pilgrimage builds on this tradition. While the event has been slimmed to reflect post-Covid times, the day is still designed to bringing pilgrims into the city of Oxford from all points of the compass and all corners of the Diocese. We look forward to welcoming pilgrims from the three counties we serve.’