I THOUGHT some readers might like to ask, why it is that the first (and only female) Saint native to Sussex, and who lived in the Eastbourne area, is virtually never mentioned by the Church and is almost unknown?
St Lewinna was a young woman who was killed for her Christian Faith by pagan Saxons in c. 670.
Her remains were honoured at Alfriston where there is still some mention of her and in 1344 a small monastery existed near Jevington that was named for her.
In 1058 her remains were stolen by a Flemish monk and taken to St Winnock’s Abbey in Flanders where they had a chequered existence until in 1558 her shrine was destroyed during the Reformation.
For what it’s worth, she still gets a mention at the Russian Orthodox convent in Robertsbridge on their website, but not a peep out of the Church of England.
Sussex’s first male saint - Wilfrid - gets plenty of press. I wonder why?
Mark Perry Nash
Lecturer in History
Hammond Place, Storrington.