St Mary's pupil Chaplaincy Team
Our Chaplains are: Keo, Logan, Evie, Cecily, Marcus, Neve, Violet & Claudia.
The School Chaplains have a weekly meeting on Monday afternoons. In preparation for a liturgy, they meet more often to allow time to write prayers and practice reading them aloud.
They successfully planned and delivered 3 liturgies during the Spring and Summer terms, one for the Year 1’s, then the Year 2’s and finally their own class (Year 3’s). They were able to set up for their liturgy and welcome children to their prayer space. The chaplains read prayers which they had composed.
The liturgies for Year 3 and 2 focused on forgiveness and reconciliation with God.
Each week, a couple of the chaplains assist with a telephone call to the Parish Secretary to find out the names of the sick in the parish so that they can be prayed for in school. They also check to see if any member of the parish has passed away recently. Sometimes, the parish secretary tells them about a baby who has been baptised during Mass. These names are then put into a prayer which a couple of the chaplains will read out in Friday assembly.
The chaplains judged the Easter Garden competition and chose the winners.
In May, the chaplains wrote some prayers to Mary which they read out at the Crowning of Mary service. They also made a rosary which had a single decade and were taught how to use it. They made some notes about why the Month of May is a special time for remembering Mary.
In March, the chaplains researched the organisation Mary’s Meals and then put together a powerpoint presentation of their facts. They used the presentation in a whole school assembly to tell the school about the work of Mary’s Meals and why it was important to support them during Lent. They unveiled the plan to raise funds by forgoing a bar of chocolate and bringing the pennies into school instead. The total raised for Mary’s Meals during Lent 2022 enabled Mary's Meals to feed 10 children each for a year.
In January, the chaplain designed and created posters to advertise a food collection for the local food bank. A couple of the chaplains travelled with the food to deliver it to the Dorchester Food Bank.
Our first meetings focused on talking about what would happen during a liturgy and that as chaplains we would be working together to understand the different parts that are necessary and how to write prayers for our chosen theme. Part of the stepping stone to lead them into doing their own liturgy has included writing and reading prayers for our whole school liturgy.
Below is a sample of the notes recorded after the February meetings with the Chaplains:
Group meeting. Chaplains made notes about what to include in a liturgy. We spoke about the importance of prayer and what it means. Ended the session by getting the Chaplains to set up a prayer space in the library using whatever they wanted from the items supplied. Great teamwork. They independently set up a focal point and then we lit the candles and finished with a prayer. One of the chaplains thought one of the items (a handmade icon of the cross) would be ideal to pass around a prayer circle.
Began by reading the scripture we shall be using for the Year 1 Liturgy - Luke 2: 41-52
Recapped last week’s session by building up a knowledge bank of what prayer is, how to pray and the significance of the Sign of the Cross.
All Chaplains stuck a copy of the structure of a liturgy in their books. We then chatted through how we could translate the structure into a plan for our liturgy with year 1 and who wanted to do what. We finished by practising the bidding prayers, passing a cross around our circle and saying our prayer as we held it.
Short sessions with individual chaplains or groups to practice reading the scripture readings for our liturgy or composing what they are going to say when introducing their part of the liturgy in their books.
Quick run through of liturgy in morning before Chaplains led a liturgy in Year 1 in the afternoon. This was their first liturgy and it went really well, they got really involved with helping the year 1’s decide what they wanted to pray for.
Chaplains assisted with a phone call to the parish secretary.