The Julian Centre, next door to St Julian’s Church, welcomes visitors, houses the Julian Library and offers books, cards and other merchandise for sale. You can also purchase the full range of books and merchandise at our online shop.
The Julian reference library aims to stock everything ever written about Julian, in any language. It offers a place to study, links with fellow devotees and a knowledgeable and friendly staff to help direct your research. In addition, there is a lending library that includes books of general Christian interest.
The Centre is open Monday to Saturday, 10.30am to 3.30pm.
A STORY OF BOOKS
Behind the story of the Julian Centre is a story of books and the making of books. First came Julian's own book written after her revelations of 1373. Then came the revival of interest in her writings sparked by Grace Warrack's edition in 1901, and T.S Elliot's quotation of 'all manner of thing shall be well' in his poem 'Little Gidding' in 1942.
A year earlier, in 1941, St Julian's church had been largely destroyed by World War II bombs. But thanks to the determination of the then Rector, Fr Charles Sear, and Mother Flora of the Community of All Hallows which had been associated with the parish for over a century, the church was restored. More than that, the Cell alongside where Julian had lived, and which had been demolished at the Reformation, was rebuilt.
When Fr Michael McLean became Rector in 1974 one of his first acts was to ask Fr Robert Llewelyn, recently retired, to become a kind of 20th century anchorite at the Cell. Shortly afterwards they established the Centre to provide for Pilgrims and to hold all publications about Julian. They also founded The Friends of Julian. The result was more books.
First came Fr Robert's 'Enfolded in Love', his selection of passages from Julian's writings arranged for daily reading. This little book has become an international bestseller, translated into half a dozen languages. It has brought Julian's wisdom and comfort to thousands of people world wide. This was followed by 'In Love Enclosed', a further selection, and then a whole series of books containing daily readings from other spiritual writers, many of them edited by him. It has been the royalties from these and his other books which largely financed the Centre.
Other writers, among them many who have given the Annual Julian Lecture, have been inspired to publish on her writings, so there is now an impressive canon of Julian literature arising in part from the work of the Centre.
Fr Robert died in 2008 and, alas, books go out of print and royalites thus diminish. The Friends of Julian constantly seek in faith new funding so that the work of the Centre may expand, and its service to lovers of Julian's writing may continue.
St Julian’s Alley
Tel: +44 (0) 1603 767380