“All shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of things shall be well.” Pretty gutsy words from a woman who lived through some of the most turbulent times in human history. Dame Julian of Norwich was an anchoress in medieval Anglia, probably born around 1342 and she probably died around 1416. Historians really don’t know that much about her but her works and writings are immortal.
In the years Julian was living, the plague was ravaging Europe. Some historians even believe that she became an anchoress upon the death of her husband and children. Whatever the reason, Julian entered anchoritic life after a series of visions. Anchorites are considered one of the most ascetic hermits because they literally board themselves up with only a window as access to the outside world. It was in these living conditions that Julian wrote her profound religious works and became a renowned spiritual authority.
So, why do I share this (very brief) story of Dame Julian with you? I share her tale because it offers a glimpse of the Christian faith we all strive to attain. A woman, who faced trials far greater than our own, offered her entire life to God and could say, “all shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of things shall be well.” I offer those words to all of us, no matter our trials, no matter our tribulations, no matter our sins or lack of faith, in the hands of God, “all shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of things shall be well.”