The final day of hosting the relics of St Bernadette in the Archdiocese of Birmingham was one to remember as school children led all in prayer.

On Monday (10 October) the relics were at the Immaculate Conception in Bicester, having travelled there late on Sunday night.

Along with Archbishop Bernard Longley, pupils from Blessed George Napier School (Banbury), St Bernadette's Primary School (Birmingham) and St Mary's Primary School (Bicester) led all in praying the Glorious Mysteries of the Rosary together, in the presence of the relics.

The prayerful service was accompanied with music from Dan and Emily at One Life Music, and live streamed so schools across the Archdiocese, and beyond, could join in virtually.

School pupils had opened the service by introducing St Bernadette and recounting her visions of Our Lady.

And Canon Jonathan Veasey, Diocesan Lead Trustee for Education, described it as a ‘special moment for us all’.

Following a further period of veneration a Farewell Mass was celebrated by Bishop David Evans.

Canon John Batthula, parish priest at the Immaculate Conception, thanked everyone for ‘making this spiritual experience something unique’ adding it ‘went so smoothly because it was so well prepared’. It is thought almost 3,000 pilgrims visited the relics whilst they were at Bicester.

The congregation then gathered outside for the final hymn before waving the relics off to the Diocese of Northampton.

Photo Gallery by Con McHugh

Relics of St Bernadette visit Bicester, Oxfordshire

Photo Gallery (parish submissions)

Relics of St Bernadette at Bicester, Welcoming Liturgy