The Religious Education Department works effectively to promote the ethos of St.Patrick’s Grammar School, that puts the individual student at the centre of the educational experience. This is in keeping with the school’s Mission Statement, “of deepening each student’s faith and helping to sustain a Christian dimension to his spiritual, moral and social life.”
The R.E Department liaises with individual staff, HOD’s and senior management in the organisation of whole school and year group Masses, including the preparation of readings, readers, reflections and music. The R.E Dept organises prayer services and para-liturgies throughout the school year, while actively promoting a positive attitude towards liturgies and the Catholic ethos of the school. This is in keeping with the religious and educational philosophy of the school, “providing opportunities for the student to experience God…in worship and in service of others.”
The R.E Dept prepares suitable materials for use with class or year groups throughout the school year, and helps to organise appropriate visitors to the school for example, the Taize community to speak to some of the senior students on the topic of vocation.
Our department is aware of the exciting opportunities afforded by ICT in the promotion of significant feast days/liturgical seasons and how ICT could be used to promote a greater awareness of church-related themes, especially at Christmas and Easter time. Suitable and informative materials are sought and displayed on our main notice board and in the various display cabinets throughout the school. Topics would include:
- The meaning and significance of Advent/Christmas;
- Relevant images and information on St. Patrick, St. Brigid and Our Lady;
- The meaning and significance of Lent/Easter.
The R.E Dept assists colleagues in the promotion and organisation of charitable events e.g. the Lenten Trocaire campaign and the Christmas shoebox appeal in living out the aims of the school’s Mission Statement, “Developing as a community that appreciates the Christian values of co-operation, responsible conduct, earnest effort, compassion and mutual respect.”
Using various existing channels of communication such as the staff bulletin, notice-boards and the main hall screen, the R.E Dept promotes the active mission of the church among students and staff. The Department also provides a November Dead List and a prayer service to remember the dead in November.
The R.E Dept ensures that the School Chapel is seen as a place of worship, a place of celebration of our Christian values and as a place for reflection, away from the busy day-to-day bustle of exams and school work. Spiritual reflection is an important part of the make up of our students, where they “grow to appreciate the life and mission of Jesus Christ.”
At St.Patrick’s, we are aware of the need for positive promotion of the message of the church among students who, in modern times, may not have the traditional exposure to the positive benefits of the faith. We work as a whole-school basis in a way that will, we hope, enrich the spiritual community of St. Patrick’s.