On Saturday 10th November after departing from the resounding welcome and joy-filled veneration of a packed cathedral in Birmingham, the Icon was solemnly greeted at the door of the parish of Our Lady Queen of Peace, St Anthony of Padua Church, Wythenshawe, Manchester. The Bishop of Shrewsbury, Rt Rev. Mark Davies gave a moving address prior to leading the faithful in the Rosary who were gathered in their hundreds of all ages. Bishop Davies reminded the flock that the Icon is a symbol both in history and now in our own time of steadfast fidelity to Christ and his Gospel in the face of all that threats the defense of life, marriage and the family. He recalled how over 400 years ago before and after the great battle of Lepanto that Pope Pius V urged the faithful of Europe to resort to urgent and fervent praying of the Rosary as the most powerful spiritual weapon in the struggle against all the threatens the Christian faith and mission of the Church. “Whatever happens in the fields of battle, whatever happens in political votes” said the Bishop; “it is the power of the Holy Rosary that Our Lady protects us with the Gospel of love in the Name of Her Son.”
In welcoming a large crowd of northern pilgrims who came to venerate the Icon Bishop Davies encouraged all present to re commit themselves to the defense of the unborn and upholding true marriage and family as the optimum absolute environment ordained by God for the protection of children. Bishop Davies led the pilgrims in the solemn Acr of Entrustment before Our Blessed Lady. The faithful continued to visit the Icon throughout Sunday 11th November until very late at night before its departure to Scotland on Monday 12th.