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September 20th, 2007 - Torchlight procession
Torchlight procession

This week saw the revival of a long treasured occasion: the Batley torchlight procession . Torchlight processions are familiar to those who travel on Pilgrimage to Lourdes each year, but less common here in England.

The procession began with the singing of the 'new' Lourdes Hymn 'Holy Virgin, by God's Decree' which was followed by a welcome from Bishop Roche. The Homily was preached by Bishop Hopes, Auxiliary Bishop of Westminster and chair of the Bishops' Conference Liturgy committee.

The procession ended with solemn Pontifical Benediction in St. Mary of the Angels Church . As the procession entered the church the choir sang two contrasting settings of the Hail Mary: 'Bogoroditse Devo' from the All Night Vigil by Rachmaninov, and a setting in Latin by Victoria.

Benediction saw the singing of the traditional plainsong melodies of the O Salutaris and Tantum Ergo, alongside Palestrina's motet 'Adoramus Te.' The service concluded with all singing the seasonal antiphon to the Blessed Mother: Salve Regina.


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Leeds Cathedral
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