Shrine enthusiast Michael Tavinor explores the history and the present day significance of the shrines to the saints that can be found in many cathedrals and abbeys, and in places such as Walsingham, Dorchester, and other local pilgrimage destinations.
He traces the importance of shrines in the UKs spiritual life from medieval times and considers how people and church buildings were influenced by shrines in their midst. He recounts the shrines' destruction at the Reformation; asks why they provoked such a vicious reaction and what was happening during the hidden years before the tide turned in both Anglican and Catholic churches in 19th century.
As visitor numbers to cathedrals and pilgrimage centres continue to grow in strength in the twenty first century, this guide includes information on current working shrines and a reflection on the power of shrines now, from cathedrals to the 'roadside shrines prevalent today.
Michael Tavinor is the Dean of Hereford and the author of Saints and Sinners of the Marches.
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