IT has been a real pleasure to welcome children from one of our local schools into church to find out about Easter.
The Year 3 pupils from Horndean C of E Junior School have each spent a day in our church and church hall for a series of workshops.
They’ve been exploring the churchyard, trying on the outfits that monks and bishops wear, and learning some new songs.
They also decorated some eggs for Easter, and baked unleavened bread – the kind of bread that Jesus and his disciples would have eaten at the Last Supper before his death.
And they’ve explored the Easter story with an interactive walk through our church.
The two days of workshops each ended with a short service in which the children were able to use some of the things they’ve created in their workshops.
The bishop led the service on one of the two days.
It’s the fifth year that children from the school have visited the church at Easter, giving them a chance to discover more about the basics of the Christian faith, and to hear the Easter message. Many people from the church put an immense amount of time and energy into making these days enjoyable and memorable for the children.
You might wonder why children need to visit a church to discover more, rather than just learn in the classroom.
It actually makes a huge difference to see parts of the church and churchyard that reveal something about the Christian faith.
And in today’s secular culture, children do get fewer chances to see inside churches, synagogues, temples and mosques.
The chance to visit places of worship can help the information they’ve learnt in RE lessons to come alive.
And whether you believe Jesus rose from the dead or not, it is the foundation of the Christian faith for millions of people around the world.
Understanding why someone would believe that – and what hard evidence there is for that extraordinary claim – will help these children to grow up with a better understanding of their world and its culture.
ST JAMES, CLANFIELD, and ALL SAINTS, CATHERINGTON
Parish office: 023-9259 3139