Collective worship and prayer are important aspects of the Catholic life of our school. It is woven throughout the school day following the Liturgical Life of the Church. At St Mary’s we enable the children to develop their relationship with God through a wide variety of prayer opportunities, which take place in a range of settings.
Collective Worship provides children with the opportunity to:
- Praise and worship God.
- Reflect the values of the Gospels.
- Plan their own personal contributions to Collective Worship.
- Respond to and participate in the worship offered.
- Develop a community spirit, a common ethos and shared values.
- Consider spiritual and moral issues.
- Celebrate God working within us.
- Understand the need for, and importance of prayer.
There is an active prayer life at St Mary’s for all pupils of all ages.
Pupils learn and say the following daily prayers; Morning Offering, Grace before Meals, Grace after Meals and Evening Offering. In KS2, children pray the Angelus every day at midday.
As pupils progress across the school, they learn a wider range of traditional prayers that they are introduced to at age appropriate times, in line with Diocese expectations. For example, Reception pupils are expected to know how to make the Sign of the Cross, the Our Father and the Hail Mary as well as the four daily prayers. By Y6, pupils are learning the Prayer to the Holy Spirit and The Apostles Creed. Our prayer book can be found here.
Pupils also use prayer at different times in the liturgical calendar, to reflect upon key events, such as the Stations of the Cross or the Rosary. We are lucky enough to have a dedicated prayer area in school and in our school garden that children are encouraged to use for spontaneous prayer throughout their school life.
At St Mary’s we also have RE Ambassadors made up of pupils from each Year 6 class. One of their roles is to ensure that class prayer areas reflect the Liturgical Calendar. In addition, they ensure that the indoor Prayer Area and the Prayer Garden are both respected and clean. They also have a responsibility to represent the school at Diocese events. These pupils volunteer themselves and stay in role for the school year.
All pupils across each phase of school contribute to leading prayer in class, evaluating RE and Catholic Life. They bear witness by living the gospel values that we expect within our school community.