Meet our Spirituality Team!
The team work with Miss Fry to take responsibility for the designing, arranging and running of Prayer Days, utilising our outdoors Quiet Garden in innovative ways, working with Glen Lodge, a local residential care home, and suggesting ideas for our school’s unique spiritual journey to be full of awesome wonderment and reflection!
They are enthusiastic individuals who work well as a team. Here are some possible ideas for building spirituality into your life which they suggest can help to find inner calm and contentment:
- Smile and stay on the positive side when things worry you, share them by talking with someone special.
- Art can help you to relax, you don’t have to make a finished piece, just enjoy the ‘doing’ part.
- Reading time and getting lost in a story helps my well-being.
- Chatting to others is great.
- I think helping others makes you help yourself too.
- Playing games can be fun and make you feel good.
- Sometimes we draw to a story, I feel relaxed when I try this.
- Breathing and focusing on something happy can help my mind feel good, I think it is called being mindful.
- You can watch calming clips online (check with your grown-up first to make sure they are suitable).
- Do what you enjoy in your free time to feel happy, it helps you to enjoy life more.
- Play with your friends.
- Let people who are special to you know how you feel about them.
The Spirituality Team remind us that being spiritual looks and feels different for everyone as we all experience spirituality in unique ways.
Meeting Bishop Rose MBE
On 29th September, we were incredibly lucky to have Bishop Rose, the Bishop of Dover, come to our school. She led an assembly, and then had a tour from our House Captains, and then a meeting with our Spirituality Team.
Below are some of the questions that the Spirituality Team asked Bishop Rose.
How did you feel when they didn’t accept you because of your race or your gender?
I felt sad but knew that this was not about me but about them. Someone once shouted at me to go back to Africa, and I knew that they were just ignorant because they didn’t even specify a country to go back to in Africa. There were some people that were unhappy that I was black, but I am happy in the colour of my skin and gender. I told them that if they were unhappy with the colour of my skin or my gender, then they could go, not me. I see it as their problem, that it is not my problem. I do not want to be weighted down by this kind of talk, I just want to be light and free.
Why did you decide on this career?
I was fourteen when I knew I wanted to work within the church, but before that I wanted to be a teacher. I think being a teacher is so important because you are helping the next generation and enabling them to become better.
Have you got any tips on how we can have a better Christian environment?
Everyone needs to be able to express their spirituality in their own way. It is not about shouting to people that you are a Christian, it is about showing them. Show people you care through acts of kindness and compassion. You already do this by helping the younger children at lunchtime and at breaktime. You already show this in the way you talk to one another. My parents always used to say “Actions speak louder than words” and I believe we all need to do this. Remember: be forgiving, be loving and be caring.
Did you find it easy growing up?
It was tricky growing up because we did not have a lot of money but when I passed the 11+ it felt good. All my uniform and my shoes were second hand and I had to have the same pair of shoes all year, so if they had holes in them, or I grew out of them, I didn’t get another pair. Sometimes I had no lunch, but luckily caring friends shared their lunch with me. It was hard when my mum moved to England, but this was quite normal in Jamaica, so other friends also had a parent that lived in another country.
Do you have siblings?
I do. I have an older sister and we have the same parents. My parents were not married, and when my mum moved to England she fell in love, got married and have five children. There are six of us in total.
Have you always wanted to work within the church?
Always. From when I was young I knew I wanted to be a part of it. It wasn’t always easy though as the church didn’t allow women. There are always going to be barriers created and you have to go through them. It reminds me of the story of “We Are Going on a Bear Hunt”, which is a story I love to read to my children. They can’t go around the obstacles, they can’t go under it or over it, but you can go through it. People will always create barriers, but you have to find a way to navigate those barriers. It reminds me of a song, “I higher you build your barriers, the taller I become” and you have to do that.
How did you feel when you became a bishop?
I cried. When the Archbishop phoned I couldn’t stop crying and they didn’t know if I was still on the phone. I just felt so overwhelmed because I never imagined that it was happening and it was hard to believe. Being consecrated at St Paul’s cathedral was just so special.
What was the Queen like?
She was so amazing and so funny. She was a lot smaller than she looks on the television and she was such a great host. When she talks to you, you know that she is interested and that she cared about what you said. She never looked like she wanted to move on from a conversation with you.
What was your proudest moment?
There have been so many. Being able to ordain people, be in schools and talk to people. I just love talking to people. Opening a new school was amazing. I opened a new school and they had put a plaque there and it had my name on it. That was very special.
How was it being at Harry’s wedding?
That was very special. They collected me from my home and took me to Windsor Castle. I even had police riders – that was so exciting. It was just a very exciting experience.