Our links with the parish of St. Cuthbert and St. Joseph are very strong and well established, and we are supported brilliantly by Fr. Chris and Fr. Michael. We also have great links with St. Thomas More, St. Joseph’s and Christ Church schools, and this year all four schools joined each other for our Easter Passion at Northumberland Square in North Shields. Despite heavy rain we had a fantastic support again as children from all four school re-told the story of Jesus’ Easter Passion. St. Thomas More students provided singing soloists as everyone joined together in prayer, singing and liturgical dance. Music on the day was provided by Celia Bryce on acoustic guitar which added another dimension to our day. During Holy Week we had prayer stations each morning at St. Cuthbert’s and families and parishioners joined us each morning to reflect on the events of Holy Week and how they impacted on our own lives.
We were delighted and privileged once again to work with our Filipino families planning, preparing for and leading our May Procession together. We celebrate our diversity every single day at St. Cuthbert’s and our school belongs to all our children and families. Parents taught children traditional Filipino songs and dances and they taught us all about the traditional May Procession in the Philippines. Each class in school celebrated a different aspect of Our Lady and children were dressed in traditional Filipino clothes and carried beautifully decorated umbrellas, signs, and banners made by the children. We gathered together in Church and our procession stopped the traffic throughout North Shields again as we made our way to Northumberland Square to join in prayer before processing back to school via The Beacon Centre. Our whole school community then joined together as we placed our crowned Mary in our prayer shelter and prayed and sang together.
First Holy Communions were celebrated at St. Cuthbert’s Church this year and the children and families had a fantastic day. Our parish, families and school work very closely to prepare children for this most special of days and it is was fantastic to see so many children back at Mass for their Sending Forth Mass at the start of July. St. Cuthbert’s Mini Vinnies continue to lead the way for children at St. Cuthbert’s and further afield this year. The children made up the core of our RRSA steering group and they were instrumental in St. Cuthbert’s becoming the only primary school in North Tyneside to currently hold the UNICEF Rights Respecting School Silver Award. They have also led a lot of our fundraising at school this year, planning, preparing and running our Macmillan Coffee morning and food collections at Harvest Festival.
Our Mini Vinnies were delighted to join St. Thomas More at St. Columba’s Church for their celebration Mass earlier this term. They children took a full part in the Mass and were very excited to be working so closely with staff and children from the school they will be moving on to. Year 6 have had another busy end to the school year which included a day of song, dance and praise with the Youth Ministry Team at the Youth Village in Consett. The class are also involved in a joint end of year Mass with children from our family of Catholic schools and will be leading our end of year Mass with St. Joseph’s during our penultimate week, and on the last day of the school year.
We welcomed Richard Moore, his brother Noel and friends from Children in Crossfire for a third visit this year. Our children were very excited to meet Richard’s brother Noel after hearing so much about him in the past. Noel and Richard told the children they were very excited to be taking part in the Coast to Coast bike ride with St. Cuthbert’s and that the money raised would be going to support children in Tanzania. Thrive has become a massive part of school life at St. Cuthbert’s this year and it complements our approach to learning, holistic care and attention to the emotional and spiritual needs of our children, families and staff.