Children and staff come together to pray for a happy and successful year ahead
Torrential rain followed by high damaging winds put paid to the intended visit to Holy Cross Parish Church for Mass. (Thanks to Fr. Wayne and his parish welcome team for being so patient!)
Despite this, all of our children came together in a wonderfully prayerful atmosphere to look ahead to 2018. In John's gospel we were reminded about Jesus' first meeting with Peter. Andrew, his brother, had brought Peter along to meet with Jesus. We are told that Jesus simply stared at Peter before announcing that he would be his rock. In other words, Jesus saw something special in Peter. Nobody else could see it, including Peter himself. Peter would go on to make mistakes, of course, but ultimately, Jesus could still see the special qualities that Peter had. What a wonderful New Year message for us. Jesus sees what is special in us in the same way and will never lose sight of this, even when we make mistakes.
In preparation for the liturgy, the children wrote about their hopes on stars which were presented as offertory gifts. Looking at the comments, we reflected on how many children, as they sat together in a small space in the relatively small town of Bedford, are so aware of those all around the world who are in need. So many children wanted to pray for those involved in war in places like Syria. It is just incredible how outward facing our children are. We also enjoyed the comments that expressed the hope that families would be healthy and happy. A pupil had written that their hope was that nan was having a wonderful time in heaven!
The children sang traditional carols very beautifully. At the end of mass, each class was presented with this poster.
The Epiphany tradition of blessing our homes whilst remembering the three wise people who visit Jesus goes back to the early Christians. Traditionally, chalk is used (or make a card) on the lintel of our doors to mark the year, the names of the three kings (Caspar, Melchior and Balthasar) and the phrase Christus Mansionem Benedicat (May Christ Bless this House). This poster will be displayed above the door into our classrooms and other places where our children learn and play.
As we embark upon our Diocesan Year of Prayer and Vocation, it reminds us that Christ is with us in all that we do around our school.
We will overcome the weather next time!