Prayer and Collective Worship

Prayer, reflection and worship are at the centre of what we do here at St Joseph’s. Throughout the year, we celebrate religious events by saying Mass, holding liturgy services, adoration and celebrating of the sacraments including receiving the Eucharist and Reconciliation.

Worship is held on many different scales, these include: intimate class Masses, year group  worships, whole school Celebration of the Word, whole school Masses, class Liturgy of the Word celebrations in church.

Our school has a culture of prayer, which is central to everyday life at our school. We begin our day with a morning prayer; before we eat lunch, classes say their lunchtime prayers thanking God for the food we receive; we finish our day by saying a blessing before we leave at home-time.

Morning Prayer

Oh my God you love me,
You are with me night and day.
I want to love You always,
in all I do and say.
I’ll try to please you Father,
bless me through the day.
Amen

 

End of Day Prayer

God our Father,
we come to say.
Thank you for your love today.
Thank you for my family
and all the friends you give to me.
Guard me in the dark of night
and in the morning send your light.
Amen.

 

We celebrate whole school and class Masses throughout the school year. This includes Masses to celebrate Feast Days and Masses to celebrate the beginning and end of the school year.

All Masses are planned alongside the children and we encourage the involvement of children when reading, signing and performing liturgical sign songs.

Parents and parishioners are invited to celebrate all Masses with school.

Our school has a culture of prayer, which is central to everyday life at our school. Teachers make use of a range of collective worship forms, such as child-led Liturgies, Christian Meditation and Lectio Divina. The Presentation Sisters visit school regularly to help us develop our understanding of different forms of prayer.

Child-led Liturgies

Liturgies are planned based on the school Word of the Week, which gives the children a weekly theme on which to focus their worship. Some classes also plan liturgies on themes of their own choosing, particularly if they want to pray for something specific to them.

Class liturgies and celebration of the word are planned and delivered progressively as the children move throughout the school. Adults reduce their scaffolding in the planning stage as the children move throughout the year (progression from term to term) as well as between year groups as they progress through the school (progression year on year). Children make use of a range of resources in their liturgies. We are currently experimenting with the new ‘Let Us Pray 2Gether’ resources which will aid progression and further support independence in the planning stage of worship.

The chaplaincy team meets regularly to plan and deliver liturgies for other classes and year groups, marking events in the Liturgical Calendar such as Harvest, the month of the Holy Rosary (October), All Souls, Advent and Lent.

Our planning templates ensure that the theme of the liturgy is clear throughout, maintaining that Scripture is at the heart of worship. We particularly focus on what we want our congregation to ‘see, hear, think and do’ during the worship, and we use the Let Us Pray 2Gether resource to help us do this. We then put these ideas into our plan following the structure of gathering together, preparing to hear the Word, Scripture reading, response to the Word, receiving our mission and ending the liturgy. The children are aware of how this mirrors the structure of the Mass.

Prayer And Liturgy Progression St Joseph’s

Lectio Divina

Lectio Divina was introduced to the children as a conversation with God. This is an opportunity for our children to study scripture and spend time in reflecting on God’s Word.

Lectio Divina focuses around short passages of scripture, allowing the Word of God and its meaning to have a personal impact on you. Children are encouraged to say which words stand out to them and why, how the passage makes them feel and what it is saying to them.

Lectio Divina At St Joseph’s

Lectio Divina Powerpoint

Homework is sent for families to complete together throughout the year. This ranges from talking about the mission statement, art competitions and exploring ways to encounter Christ at home. In addition, we run parent workshops with Sr Susan to help support parents when praying with their children.

Parents and carers are invited to all school Masses and class Masses, and class Liturgy of the Word and liturgies each week.

Every child in school from year 1- 6 have an individual prayer journal. This is a way for the children to have a deep conversation with God and to track their relationship with God throughout their time at St Joseph’s. There are times planned throughout the week for prayer journaling and children are encouraged to use this as an independent form of prayer when they need it. Prayer journals are kept by the children as they move through school so that they can document their prayer life and look back to see how their relationship with God has changed and grown over their time at school.