On Friday we were blessed to have four priests from the Cathedral to support our children with the penitential service. After the service, the children visited various Advent prayer stations (Jesus the Light of the world, Saying Sorry, The Gifts of Advent, Preparing our way for Jesus) where they offered prayers and reflection. As always our children were reflective and reverent despite of some heating issues.
Advent is the time of preparation for Jesus' coming and to be closer to God. As as school, one way for preparing for his coming is to recognize our wrong doings and to have a clean hearts.
Children visited our advent prayer stations and reflected on the scripture shared; Making straight path Station, Love Station, Forgiveness Station, Shining Star Station and Jesus the light of the world Station.
Thank Fr Rhinda (our parish priest) for leading the service and Fr Anthony for hearing the confession.
Today we have our Harvest Mass giving thanks and praising God for all the blessing we receive everyday. Thank you Year3/4 for leading this wonderful event and thank you parents for your continued support. Food that have been collected will be donated to our local food bank.
On Thursday 8th September, some of our KS2 children attend St Bernadette of Lourdes Liturgy at St John's Cathedral. It was a beautiful and memorable event for our children to pay their respect to the relic of St Bernadette.
Catholic Social Teaching
"Serve one another with the gifts you have received."
1 Peter 4:8-11
This term we will be reflecting on the theme of Family and Community during our Catholic Social Teaching lessons. This theme will help us understand that as human beings we are made in the image and likeness of God and are to be respected as sacred. It recognises that all people are social beings who communicate and relate to one another; we are made for community and communion with one another, living and sharing our daily lives, hopes and dreams.
We understand this to mean that " We live our lives like Jesus" by caring for each other and being active in sharing our gifts with our community.
In our work we will be learning:
Years 1 and 2
Years 3 and 4
Years 5 and 6
Pope Francis wrote; "Local individuals and groups can make a real difference."
para 214 Laudio Si May 2015
Annual Schools Mass
Eight children from Year 5 represented our school at the Annual Schools Mass at St John's Cathedral. Mass was celebrated by Bishop Philip and was a joyful celebration of the Eucharist where he reminded the children that Jesus wants to be their friend and is close to them.
Lent is time for us to get closer to God and grow in love with Jesus. We have set some prayer stations where children reflected on the ways they can get closer to God and thank Him for his love and for blessings we receive everyday. We would like to thank our parish priest who led the service and for the other priests from the cathedral who offered individual confessions with the children.
Support for Ukraine
During Lent, families have been generous in their support of the people of Ukraine, especially those who find themselves as refugees fleeing conflict and war.
On Friday 22nd March, our whole school came together to pray for peace in the Ukraine and in other areas in our world where there is conflict and war.
Catholic Social Teaching teaches us about SOLIDARITY and the COMMON GOOD - which is based on the belief that we are all responsible for one another because we all belong to one human family created and loved by God. We understand this to mean that we must take care of each other and be committed to working for justice and peace.
When we support those in need, like the people of the Ukraine we are living out our Mission "To Live our Lives like Jesus," by showing solidarity to our brothers and sisters across the world.
This year, our families and staff shared the gift of Christmas with the residents of two local Care Homes - Meadow House and Bluewater. The children even managed to sing a Christmas Carol! Our community were incredibly generous in providing a present for the residents and sharing the gift of Christmas.
Our Key Stage 2 children took part in a reflective Advent Penitential Service and in series of Advent prayer stations to reflect on our need for forgiveness and reconciliation, ourselves and our wrong doings. Fr. Emmanuel offered the Sacrament of Confession for all the children who have made their first Holy Communion. We believe that to be truly ready for Jesus' second coming, we must be at peace with others and with God.
Year 5 children have set up and led different remembrance prayer stations in the church.
Each station helped our children remember those people who sacrifice their lives for our freedom and future, to pray for people we miss and to pray for the world peace.
It was a mixture of activities; quite reflection and writing their own personal prayers. Children and staff were respectful and reflective.
Corpus University Group (Faith In Action) led our Harvest Appeal this year. They did a short liturgy about the appeal and wrote to the parents asking their support by donating food to school.
The children set up the church for our Harvest Thanksgiving mass and in the afternoon, they helped the Portsmouth Food bank representative in packing and transporting.
On 22nd September, we shared a liturgy in the church to Welcome our Early Years children and their families into our school Catholic community. As part of the service the children were all invited forward to receive a blessing from Father Emmanuel and a school Mission Statement to take home.
Year 5 and 6 Eucharistic Adoration.
Once a fortnight, the children from Years 5 and 6 spend time and reflection in front of the Blessed Sacrament for Eucharistic Adoration.
The children know the importance of this special moment - being with Jesus in the form of the Blessed sacrament. They show respect by kneeling down and praying, thanking Him for the opportunity to be with him.
On Saturday 17th September, 36 of our children received the Sacrament of the Eucharist. It was a beautiful and blessed celebration attended by many. We are thankful for the all support of our parish priest - Fr Rinda Emmanuel and the catechist in preparing and guiding these children with their journey of faith.
Walk for Water
Lent begins with Ash Wednesday, 17th February, (during half term).It is traditionally a day which starts our 40 day journey with Christ to Easter.
During Lent, we ask for God’s grace and mercy and aim to spend the next 40 days doing something to show we “Live our lives like Jesus” through how our actions, thoughts and prayers. This year, I would like to encourage everyone to take up CAFOD’s “Walk for Water” campaign. This challenges us all to walk 10,000 steps a day – about 5 miles! But could you commit to doing 5 miles over each weekend in Lent – that would be 60,000 steps or 30 miles in total! We will not be asking for a charitable donation for this campaign but would ask families to find out why we are taking part in the walk for water campaign.
The Early Years children had so much fun today raising money for CAFOD on 24th March. They were so motivated to put their faith in action and help the people in Ethiopia. The Early Years children raised over £260 for the 'walk for water' campaign so thank you so much for your generosity.
The children made posters and flags to help spread he message to help others. They have lived out our school Mission statement - of 'live your lives like Jesus.' One child said, “This has been such a fun way to give kindness to others even though we haven't met them."
During Advent, Corpus Christi University Stars organised a collection of Christmas gifts for the elderly residents of Meadow House and Bluewater Care Homes. Some of the children delivered the gifts and spread God's message of joy to the residents.
Corpus Christi University Stars made lavender bags using lavender from the school grounds and raised money for the food bank. They also organised the Harvest Collection and donated 72kg food to the Food Bank.