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Navigation : Home > Visiting >Map >Chester Cathedral > The Shrine of St. Werburgh > Saint Werburgh Prayer
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Saint Werburgh. Please click here for a closer look Saint Werburgh's Restored Shrine
Please click here for a closer look

Saint Werburgh lived in the seventh Century. She was the daughter of Wulfere, King of Marcia, the great central kingdom of Saxon England, and became a nun at Ely. Later she was made supervisor of all the religious houses for women in Mercia. In the picture she is habited as an Abbess. In her hand she holds the Cathedral of Chester, which grew up round her shrine. At her feet lies the crown she laid aside to embrace the religious life, while in the background is old Chester with its walls, Beside her are two wild geese reminiscent of a legend connected with her.

Once when she was at Weedon in Northamptonshire - now on the west coast main line from Chester to Euston - she found that the wild geese were ravaging the garden. She summoned the geese to her and lectured them on their misbehaviour. Next morning they were worse than ever, and when S. Werburgh rebuked them, complained, Yesterday, when we felt tame and good your cook caught two of us and made them into a pie. S, Werburgh agreed that this was not fair. She sent for the pie and the cook and they prayed, till at last the geese came back to life. Thereafter peace reigned, for both sides kept the peace.

Friend and pilgrim, take from S. Werburgh's shrine the motto, " Live and let live."

Visits to the shrine of S. Werburgh were very effective for healing all manner of ills. Then, as now, Faith was a mighty power. It is our lack of faith that makes us such impotent Christians.

Almighty God, grant to us through the commemoration of thy holy servant, Werburgh, that honouring the purity and strength with which thou didst invest her, we may receive power to hallow and subdue both body and soul to the purposes of Thy Will; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.



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