Child Led Worship is an extremely important element of the worship programme at St Katharine's. During year 6, children can apply to be a Child Led Worship ambassador. Those selected then take responsibility for planning, writing, resourcing and delivering whole school worships throughout the year. The ambassadors relish this opportunity and their worships are always engaging and thought provoking. In addition, the ambassadors help other children plan and deliver class worships by talking through ideas and creating tips for leading an inspiring worship.
Children also contribute to the planning and evaluating of worship themes through class surveys and feedback opportunities as well as regularly meeting governors to talk about the impact of worship.
One of the things the children had their say on, was voting for a diverse nativity set for our worship table during Advent - they loved playing with it!
Throughout the school year, children from St Katharine's are invited to lead parts of the Sunday services at St Nicholas' and St Katharine's churches - these services always prove to be warm and welcoming, with the congregation clearly appreciating the children's words, prayers and questioning.
Child-Led Worship Feedback
One of the best things about being a school governor is being able to visit the school and see the pupils and staff ‘in action’. As part of the monitoring of the school’s Christian ethos, I attended a child-led worship session on 3 March. Annabelle, Bethan, Rosina and Sarah from Year 6 children had prepared worship on the theme of TRUST, which they presented to a Year 5 class. The result was amazing!
It began with some energetic and fun role-play, based on acrobats and trapeze artists, and their very obvious need to trust each other! This captured the attention of the class ‘from the off’. The worship leaders then took the Year 5 class through a very carefully constructed power-point presentation on what the word ‘trust’ means and why it is so important in the Christian faith.
There were opportunities for the audience to spend a few moments talking to a neighbour about a question posed, and then offer feedback, which they did confidently and thoughtfully. There was a short cartoon version of the story of Jesus walking on the water and then encouraging Peter to join him – and, of course, Peter’s doubt, or lack of trust, leads to him beginning to sink…..a point that the Year 6 pupils drew out and the Year 5 pupils clearly grasped. The importance of trust in God and trust in each other were perfectly illustrated.
The worship finished with the following prayer, written by the Year 6 pupils:
Dear Lord, thank you for giving us people we can trust – our friends, our family, our teachers and people in the community. Sorry that we sometimes don’t trust each other, especially if we have been let down by them in the past. Let us follow Peter’s example and put our trust in you and others who love us. Please help us to forgive as Jesus taught us to and build our trust again, so that we can lead happier, more peaceful lives. Amen
At the end of the worship, Mrs St John, the Headteacher, asked the children what they thought SPIRITUALITY is. This is a question that would faze many of us, I’m sure. Not so the Year 5s and Year 6s. They spent a few moments talking to their neighbours and then offered an impressive range of responses, which included: “spirituality is reflecting on God’s kindness”; “spirituality is inside you”; “we should save the planet and be spiritual about it”. I had to remind myself that the children offering these answers were between 9 and 11 years old.
This visit served to underline what I already knew. The Christian ethos of St Katharine’s School is alive and well, and it is actively promoted. The children were able to talk about aspects of the Christian faith thoughtfully, with little hesitation and no sense of embarrassment. It was a privilege to be part of this worship session. Well done to all those involved.
Dave Talbot - Foundation Governor