‘A Prayer for Bath’
Some of you may have come across this coming together of the Churches of Bath to pray for our city. The leaders of faith have each taken a section of the famous prayer of St Francis ‘Make me an instrument of your peace’
and put it together to create a moving prayer of blessing over our community. You can find the short film on youtube at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bsGNo 2CvJ7I
Opening our hearts to the words of St Peter in his first letter
Yet again this week some friends and family have been sharing videos with me, and amongst them was this gem from Guvna B and Church leaders. It is based on a phrase in the first letter of St Peter, where the famous apostle tells his readers to ‘cast your cares and anxieties on the Lord, for He will look after you’ or depending on your translation ‘He will care for you’ (1Peter 5:7). The beautiful melody is hypnotic, and the lyrics in the tune speak so much of the spiritual journey so many of are currently experiencing. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RbD62FUJVik
The entire remaining section of that letter of St Peter is quite remarkable. If Peter were around today and we asked him to write a letter of hope, comfort and instruction for Christians in the time of a pandemic, I think he’d still write exactly this!
When God, who is the best shepherd of all, comes out in the open with his rule, he’ll see that you’ve done it right and commend you lavishly. And you who are younger must follow your leaders. But all of you, leaders and followers alike, are to be down to earth with each other, for— God has had it with the proud, but takes delight in ordinary people.
So be content with who you are, and don’t put on airs. God’s strong hand is on you; he’ll promote you at the right time. Cast your anxieties on God; because he cares for you.
Keep a cool head. Stay alert. The Devil is poised to pounce, and would like nothing better than to catch you napping. Keep your guard up. You’re not the only ones plunged into these hard times. It’s the same with Christians all over the World. So keep a firm grip on the faith. The suffering won’t last forever. It won’t be long before this generous God has great plans for us in Christ—eternal and glorious plans they are! — will have you put together and on your feet for good. He gets the last word; yes, he does.
(1 Peter 5:4-11)
This coming week we focus on wellbeing in our school weekly theme. Year groups are currently having their wellbeing days, being encouraged to take part in something a little different, to experience both familiarity and variation. Looking back at that letter of St Peter a number of things jump out for me, and should encourage us as Christians: –
“God who is the best shepherd of all…will see that you have done it right” – Let us each personally hear those words, that God will see that we have done the best we can in this situation and that is right for us, don’t feel judged or compare.
“Cast your anxieties on God, because he cares for you” – In the times when we’re struggling then we are to know that God is listening, we can pray anywhere and offer up our struggles, we are to know that He does care for us.
“It won’t be long before this generous God will put you back on your feet for good. He gets the last word.” – Amongst the constant news updates, daily briefings announcing progress or not and the personal situations we each find ourselves in. Let us listen to these words of St Peter who assures us that God will put us back on our feet again, he will have the last word and ensure we are cared for.
Over the last couple of weeks students have been sharing their sentiments for the wellbeing of others in our global community. In light of the Black Lives Matter movement, it has been clear to see how much our students care about equality and ensuring that all humanity are treat with the same kindness, values and love. We have received a number of comments, quotes, artwork and reflections from the student body and put them together to express the solidarity felt by our community.
Thoughts from Amaresa…
I believe that society has divided us against ourselves, look at your skin! You are nor black nor white, you are no different nor better than the people around you. So take the blindfold society has given you and simply throw it away. In St Paul’s letter to the Galatians it says “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male or female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus”. I think these two quotes from American sports stars are important because of their message of togetherness and human spirit.
“For those who have seen the earth from space, and for the hundreds and perhaps thousands more who will, the experience most certainly changes your perspective. The things that we share in our world are far more valuable than those which divide us.” (Donald Williams)
“Never underestimate the power of dreams and the influence of the human spirit. We are all the same in this notion; the potential for greatness lives within each of us.” (Wilma Rudolph)
Thought from Joey…
Joey wanted to use the picture below from one of the movie versions of Jesus’ life with the same quote from Galatians. He wanted us to reflect on the idea of Jesus’ suffering when he was an innocent man, and the way that the ancient world took advantage and persecuted slaves.
Thoughts from Maeve P…
As a white girl I will never in my life be subjected to the racism and prejudice brought upon the men and women of colour, the girls and boys of colour. But I can, and you can also, stand with them and fight for what’s right.
George Floyd’s murder was a horrific injustice, but an injustice that happens more frequently than we can imagine. For me, social media has been a fountain of knowledge in this time, helping me to educate myself on racism across the world and spread awareness for it. It shocks and sickens me as to why some people believe others deserve less due to the amount of melanin in their skin. Something they cannot control yet something that are targeted for their entire lives. This is why the Black Lives Matter movement is so crucial!
I have come across many white people responding with the term ‘All Lives Matter’, which of course they do. The Point of the phrase black lives matter is due to how many black lives have been treat as expendable by authorities. This phrase does not devalue other lives it simply means black lives need more focus and help at this moment because the prejudice against them has gotten out of control.
So let us all stand together because saying black lives matter is not taking away from other lives; it is a movement to show Black lives matter too. And they do. They really do.