Prayer, worship and liturgical celebration are central to our Catholic tradition and form an integral part of the school day. Prayer is encouraged in a variety of methods; – private individual prayer, group prayer, and whole school prayer.
Each child takes part in a daily act of worship (5-10 minutes) and formal prayers are used to open and close the school day sessions. The children also plan and lead acts of worship within each of their classes. Collective Worship across every class uses the same structure. We gather, using prayers or actions or music. Then, we listen to scripture, readings and / or poems. After that, we respond by doing something or saying a prayer together. Finally, we go forth by reflecting on the scripture and taking this forward into our work throughout the day. It is wonderful to see the children excited, enthusiastic and deepening their faith through prayer and liturgy. In each class, there is a prayer and liturgy book where pictures, planning templates and powerpoints are kept as a reminder and record of the acts of worship.
We look forward to our Thursday morning liturgies, which are planned and led by each class in turn. These are usually centred around global issues, British and Catholic values. The children always relate these themes to scripture references and they write their own prayers and choose their own songs to celebrate and worship together. It is wonderful for the children to leave us all with a reflection, mission idea or practical response to our celebration, enabling all to deepen faith, learn from the teachings of Christ and become the very best we can be for ourselves and for others.
We also recognise and celebrate children’s achievements, both in and out of school, during our weekly Star Award Celebration.
Amazing things can happen when people come into agreement.
Matthew 18:19 says
“I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything you ask for, it will be done for you by my Father in heaven.”
The children and staff will be delighted to pray for you or a loved.
As soon as we receive your request, the children and staff will keep your request in our hearts and minds as we pray throughout the day and week.
On the following link from St Mary's Catholic Academy Chaplaincy, we have weekly worship resources linked to Sunday's Gospel, which parents, staff and children can use - https://www.st-mary.blackpool.sch.uk/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=1969&Itemid=1133
Our lovely, reflective worship/RE areas in our classrooms celebrating our faith and being a focal point in our classrooms our around school during the start of our Spring Term.
Year 6 lead worship in Kestral Class
The girls from Peregrine Class offered and lead their worship to Year 3/4, which they planned from their chosen theme and taking the children through being gathered together, listening to the scriptures, responding to the Word of God and being sent forth with a message.
KS1 worship area - Goshawk Class
We have really enjoyed spending our worship time in our KS1 worship area. The children have had the opportunity to lead their own worship by saying their own prayers and engaging within hymns and songs familiar to them. The children are aware why we light our candle during worship. Evelyn said, 'because Jesus is the light of the world and leads us out of darkness and into light'.
Generosity and Hunger - Child-led Worship Yr6
Dzhuliya and Tia led prayer and liturgy with a theme of generosity and hunger. During the session the girls shared 'The Story of The Lonely Widow' which illustrated their chosen theme perfectly. And linked in the scripture reading of 'The feeding of the 5000'.
After leading worship in their own class, Year six visited Hobby class for worship to tell us the story of 'The poor widow who gave everything'. The children passed around the rosary beads and thought about whom they would give their last possession to. The children then joined in with the ‘Year of the Word’ prayer responses.
Prayer Writing - Goshawk Class
Goshawk Class have now added a prayer jar to their worship table. Children can write a prayer when they want and add it to the collection. These will then be chosen during worship times for the children so they can lead aspects of their class worship.
Year of the Word - Hobby Class
Hobby Class used the new KS1 'Year of the Word' display for their collective worship this week. They have started to learn the special prayer and reflected upon how God speaks to us through the Scriptures.
Response from ACN regarding our support
We received a lovely letter and certifcate from Bridget on behalf of the charity ACN, which as a school, in November, we supported in their #RedWednesday campaign, to raise awareness and support for those who have been tragically persecuated because of their faith.
Child-led worship on Creation - Osprey Class
Annabelle, Harry, Maxi and Francis led our first worship planned and organised by the children in Osprey Class. They chose the theme of 'creation' and used the Creation story to be the Word of God listened to. Before this, they gathered the children on the carpet, chose someone to light the candle and had the song 'All things bright and beautiful' playing as they got their pocket crosses and prepared to participate in worship. The children focused on endangered animals within their worship, after reading from the Bible. They asked the children what they can do to show respect and love to God's creatures.
Posada Box - preparing for the birth of Jesus
Here are a selection of photographs taken at home of some of the children who took their class posada box home during Advent. The children provided Mary and Joseph a home for the night, lit a candle and shared an Advent prayer.
Our Advent worship areas/displays
Our Advent displays around school as part of a our preparation for the coming of Jesus and on our countdown to his birth. Each class has their purple cloth on, with decorations and an advent calendar to help countdown to Christmas.
Red Wednesday - supporting Aid to the Church in Need
On Wednesday 20th November, in the month that we remember those who have died, as a school we supported the charity, Aid to the Church in Need. They hold a special campaign each year called Red Wednesday, which thinks about Christians, as well as those of other faiths, who have been persecuted because of their beliefs. We wore red, lit a red candle and prayed together in our classes. Each class now has a red candle on their worship table as reminder, that once lit, we remember the meaning of Red Wednesday.
Planning and delivering Worship - Peregrine Class
The Year 5 and 6 children in Peregrine have been planning their own worships on their chosen theme, thinking about what they've learnt in RE and what connections they can make, as well as what bibical stories they can use. The children plan and deliver worship to their peers every week and are now sharing their worships with younger pupils too.
Worship on Kindness - Buzzard Class
Buzzard Class have been reflecting on kindness as a theme in their worship. They have learnt that God wants us to be kind to each other and the children prayed to God to as Him to help them speak and act the way he wants them to.
Qualities of being a friend - Hobby Class Worship
Hobby Class had worship on the theme of friendships and what the qualities are that make a good friend.
Osprey Class' Prayer Wall
In Osprey Class, we have our own prayer wall as part of our worship area. The children are welcome to add a ribbon to represent a prayer at a time they wish but in particular during our prayer and liturgy time. We have STOP and pray theme - S is for sorry, T is for thanksgiving, O is for others and P is for peace. They choose the ribbon to match their prayer and add it to our wall whilst having reflection time with God.
Prayer and Liturgy in 2018 - 2019
Corpus Christi Worship - Year 6 led
The children in Year 6, worked in small groups to plan and prepare a worship on the theme of Corpus Christi (The Body of Christ) to all classes across the school. They did this as part of our preparation of us attending church on Thursday 20th June for the Feast of Corpus Christi, which is very significant, especially as we celebrate the Year of the Eucharist.
New Beginning Worship - Van Gogh Class
Lily and Molly planned and delivered their worship to the rest of their class on their chosen theme of 'New Beginnings'. They concentrated on a time when the children may have experienced a new beginning and how they feel about their upcoming transition to high school. The children were given the opportunity to listen and respond. The children finished with some reflective music and given the opportunity to visit the prayer wall in the classroom.
Peace Be With You - Banksy Class
When learning about what happened after Jesus' resurrection, we discovered that he turned up in a locked room with his disciples! They were shocked, so Jesus gave them a blessing; he shook their hands and said 'peace be with you'. We had a go at saying it too and shaking our friends' hands. We talked about how we say this at mass and the children now know to expect this at our Corpus Christi mass and the Year 6 leavers' mass.
Following Jesus' Commandments - Cassatt Class
During one of Cassatt Class' worship, they listened carefully to a short reading from the Gospel. The reading talked about the commandments and how we can teach people to follow them. They discussed how we could teach someone to follow rules and the children suggested that if they follow the rules then others will too.
Being a good friend - Hokusai Class
In worship, the children have been reflecting on what makes a good friend, we used role play to act out a story, then discussed how the character could change his ways for the better, like God would like him to.
Prayers about Loss - Van Gogh
As part of one of our stations for our school's reflection day about the events of Good Friday, Year 6 thought about station 8 - Jesus meets the women of Jersalem. We thought of Jesus' words from the Bible and how he did not want them to weep for him; they were because they were losing him. Here are some examples of the thoughtful and personal prayers that Year 6 wrote on the theme of loss which we displayed with the station.
Guided by a star - Hokusai Class
Today in worship we thought about qualities which make others happy. We used stars with words of qualities on to show how these can guide us in life as the star guided the wise men.
Hokusai Lenten Liturgy
Hokusai shared their Lenten liturgy with the rest of the school during the 3rd week of Lent with their own role play, story and sang two hymns - this little light of mine, which reminds us of Jesus being the light of out world and one more step along the world I go to remind us of the journey in Lent that we are in.
Mother's Day 2019 liturgy - Banksy Class
Banksy Class invited their Mothers to our assembly to share a special liturgy about how special they are, what their job is and why they love them. They said the Hail Mary to the rest of the school with actions. Below is a video that was made to show the parents about why the children love their mummy.
Lenten Liturgy by Michelangelo Class
Michelangelo led the Lenten liturgy in our third week of Lent by sharing a worship about being patient. They shared a role play with the whole school, led us in prayer and sang Be Still for the Presence of the Lord, in candle light.
Hokusai Class celebrated World Day of Prayer on Friday 1st March by the children reading out their own prayers in class that were brought in by the children. They also reflected on praying for people around the world as that is what gave to us, for all to share and have in common - our world.
Child-led Worship - Ringgold Class
Tia and Rosie planned and delivered a worship session on the theme of school life and shared this to the rest of their peers (Year 4/5).
True Friendship Child-led Worship
Lily, Wyatt, Eli and Kiera planned and delivered their worship on the theme of 'True Friendship'. The children welcomed the others to share a quality they have that makes them a good friend, this followed after sharing a story and verse from The Book of Proverbs. The class were then invited to reflect in prayer at our class prayer wall.
Remembering the Holocaust - Assembly Anniversary January 2019
Mary and Joseph's journey to Bethlehem - Posada Box
As part of our preparation for the birth of Jesus, during the season of Advent, each class had a Posada Box with their own Mary and Joseph figurines, some Advent Prayers, a candle and a diary to write in. They provided a home for Mary and Joseph, lit the candle and said a prayer with their family. Read some of the children's extracts below that they wrote in their class Posada box diary.
Red Wednesday - Supporting Aid to the Church in Need
St. Mary's today (28th November) supported Aid to the Church in Need, during their worship time in class today by wearing their red glasses given to us by the charity. We prayed for those who are suffering because of their faith and lit a red candle as we prayed for them. Year 6 had taken their red candle home during Anti-Bullying Week, these are images received from parents whose children lit their candle on Red Wednesday, taking what we shared to their homes.
Worship in Bansky Class
The children in Reception thoroughly enjoy Worship. We have relaxing, quiet music on, our room in darkness with just our candle light shining through and our worship table in the centre. When the children see this set up, they automatically understand that it is time to think about Jesus, to have a quiet moment and put our hands together. The children are brilliant at making the sign of the cross and always have lots of questions about the world around us, Jesus, God and Mary. We often have a theme for our worships such as Remembrance Day, friendship, love, forgiveness, Red Wednesday, the Year of the Eucharist, Advent or a subject close to the children's hearts.
Child-led Worship in Cassatt Class
Kian and Declan (Year 5s) planned and deliver their own themed worship on anti-bullying to our Year 1 children, following on from anti-bullying week in school.
Worship - Remembrance theme
Keiyara, Hannah and Sky (from Year 6) planned and delivered a worship, to year 2/3, based around the theme of remembrance with having celebrating Remembrance Sunday the previous day.
Year 6 child led worship - Be Grateful
Keiyara, Jean-Luc, Joseph and Libby planned and delivered their worship on the theme of being grateful to the rest of their peers. The children shared a story, asked questions to the children around what they are grateful for in their life. They simply chose to lave a lit candle in the middle of the circle to remind us of how we should be grateful for Jesus being our light.
Our Classroom Worship areas
Every child has access to a prayer area in the classroom which includes a prayer focus and then the opportunity to write class prayers, as well as bibles and resources relevant to each class. Children enjoy accessing this quiet space during breaks, lunchtimes and in prayer and liturgy time. Children are encouraged to actively participate, to plan and lead their own worship, on a chosen theme, and to even take their worship into other classes.