- Past pupil starts soup kitchen for the homeless in Xi'an
- Lessons from Auschwitz
- Black Death Piri Piri Projects
- Independent Learning Opportunities
- Faith in Action
- Nugent - Good Shepherd
- Eucharisitic Ministry
- Liverpool Pilgrimage
- Archdiocese Student Media Competition
- Charity Work
- Knights of St Columba
- R.E. Interhouse
- U13 Girls' Touch Rugby
- Sports Day & P.E. Interhouse
- GCSE P.E.
- Rugby League
- Year 11 Football Cup Final
- Sports Tour
Past pupil of St Mary's Catholic High School, Leyland receives a Citation in the Birthday Honours list : Anthony DAY, Founder and Head, Yellow Soup River Kitchen, China for services to the homeless and underprivileged in China.
British man starts soup kitchen for the homeless in Xi’an
An English businessman named Tony who started a charity in Xi’an, has been the focus of various reports in the Chinese media throughout the years. He recently gave a talk about himself and his Yellow River Soup Kitchen organisation on YiXi (China’s equivalent of TED talks) on July 3rd, which brought him renewed attention.
Tony’s story, as he himself relates it, goes like this: an electronic engineer by profession, he used to own two companies in the UK, and worked 16 to 18 hours a day. At some point he decided to give up his stressful life, sell what he owned and travel around Europe, volunteering as he traveled. He then decided to go to India, getting there via train through Russia; a travel agency recommended that on the way there he visit Xi’an, China’s ancient imperial capital. Once he got to Xi’an, Tony stayed and tried to find charities that he could work for in his free time. This was 12 years ago however, and at the time he was unable to find any charitable organisation in Xi’an.
After looking around, Tony heard that a Catholic church in Xi’an would often hand out food or money to the city’s homeless. He went to talk to the local priest, Father Chen, and asked whether he could help. After serving food to the homeless for over a year, Tony gradually developed a small team and had some volunteers to help him out. Father Chen then offered to build him a room for free where he could perform his charity work. This is how the Yellow River Soup Kitchen began. Tony and his team gradually got larger and more professional, going from serving food every Sunday to doing so twice a week, and they now serve over 1000 meals a month. Even though they have a serving room, they still do city walks to provide food for people who are unable to come to the room. Besides serving food, as more people came to Tony and his organisation for help, they also started to assist people with more diverse needs, like looking for medical treatment.
As Tony said in his talk, the Soup Kitchen aims not only to help people in need, but also provides people an opportunity to participate in charity and help others.
Here is a link to an interview with Tony Day on YouTube.
Mrs Blundell and Ms Wilson went on a CPD course to look at ways of teaching the Holocaust and what we can learn from death camps like Auschwitz. It was very interesting and emotional day at Auschwitz, considering the impact of the Holocaust and walking the path of those who were persecuted.
These are some of the Year seven pri pri history homeworks on the black death. Pupils were asked to create a project based on their learning of the black death. Here are some examples of the excellent work, which included a severed hand and a rat cake!
‘Summer of Selfies’
Take 10 selfies with you and some geography or history over the summer holidays. Print them out and bring them in to school in September. Be prepared to tell us why there is geography & history in each selfie.
Your parents can also tweet them to school
Prize of a book token for the most original.
The Faith in Action Award has been created by the Liverpool Archdiocese to facilitate an exploration of scripture and Church teaching, with an emphasis on translating this into action. The programme rewards active service in schools and parishes, encouraging students to take their service into the wider community and accept greater responsibility for their faith in action. It encourages them to shine the light of faith upon their experience, reflecting upon how this shapes and moulds them as young people. After a year of supporting charities; leading liturgies; reflection and active participation within our local parishes; it was a great joy to witness 47 of our students achieve this award. 36 students received their bronze award with 7 receiving silver and 6 receiving Gold.
Each year, we celebrate as an Archdiocese, the wonderful work that Nugent does for our local communities.
The origins of Nugent Care date back to Victorian Liverpool and the pioneering work of Father James Nugent (1822-1905) in relation to child welfare, relief from poverty and social reform. Through his ministry, Father Nugent witnessed first-hand the suffering caused by poverty and appalling conditions and took action to remedy the situation.
By the time of his death, Father Nugent had given homes and valuable skills to thousands of childrn, and laid the foundations for the work currently undertaken by Nugent Care.
Allied to the Archdiocese of Liverpool, Nugent Care continues to provide care and support for those in need and has done so for over one hundred and thirty years. Catholic schools within our Archdiocese do various charity events to raise money so that Nugent can continue to provide support for the most vulnerable in our communities. This year, our choir was invited to participate in the Good Shepherd Mass in the cathedral along with leading a drama in our own church, St Mary’s. The picture below shows His Grace, Archbishop Malcolm McMahon with our school choir.
At the beginning of the year, three year 11 students approached Fr. Jonathan requesting to be confirmed into the Catholic Church. As a group, we met for several weeks beforehand, praying and discovering what it means to receive the Holy Spirit during the Sacrament of Confirmation. It was such a privilege to journey with the students, especially as they decided upon their ‘Confirmation Name’. The common advice for the students trying to decide on a name was to research saint names and find one that fitted their personality and spiritual goals. The students shared with each other, the reasons to why they chose their ‘Confirmation names’ and it was such a joy to listen to the interesting facts that they learnt about the Saint also.
As a result of work being completed on the roof of our Church, Bishop Tom Williams kindly agreed to hold the Confirmation Mass in our school chapel. During the Mass, Bishop Tom laid his hands on the heads of each of the candidates. This is to serve as a sign that he is appointing them to be true witnesses to Christ. Bishop Tom and the congregation then prayed that each person will receive the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit: reverence, understanding, courage, knowledge, wisdom, awe and wonder and right judgment, and most importantly, to use them wisely. At the end of the Confirmation service, Bishop Tom made the sign of the cross on their foreheads with holy chrism oil. This is a sign of strength and a reminder of their commitment to follow Christ even to the cross. Pictured below is Bishop Tom with our three confirmed students.
It was such a great opportunity to work with the Chaplain from Holy Cross to train and commission several students from both schools, into the ministry of being an Extraordinary Minister of the Blessed Sacrament. We met during one weekend in May at St Mary’s Church to lead the training course and students were officially commissioned by their parish priests. It is such an important ministry and for students that have been guided by the Holy Spirit to fulfil this ministry is a true blessing to both school and parish communities.
This year, we took 90 Year 8 students on a pilgrimage to Liverpool. The aim of this educational visit was to enhance their faith and get to know each other and God along the way! Instead of the usual two day pilgrimage, we ‘crammed’ most of the activities into one day, all underpinned by scripture and spirituality. Feedback from the students was a great testimony that this is one of the most favourite ‘trips’ to be had whilst being a student at St Mary’s, Leyland. With such great positive feedback, it is envisaged that we will return to our two day pilgrimage next year!
The theme this year for the Archdiocese Student Media competition was ‘Scripture and Song’. As a school we submitted three artwork entries and it was such a blessing to be invited to Hope University Chapel for a showcase of all the high school entries. We have not yet been advised of the outcome of the competition, but I know that our students thoroughly enjoyed the morning at Hope.
Throughout the year, both the Chaplaincy and Faith in Action teams have worked tirelessly to raise the awareness as well as money for various charities such as: Derian House, St Catherine’s, Nugent, Macmillan, CAFOD, MIND, Multiple Sclerosis and Cancer Research, to name but a few. The many cake sales, sponsored walks and runs along with sponsored silences have really helped these charities that are close to many students hearts. Special thanks to all those involved in these wonderful events.
Special thanks goes to the Leyland Knights of St Columba who have sponsored several students that have participated in either the Faith in Action course or individual retreats. Their prayers and generosity is greatly appreciated.
All pupils at KS3 entered our ‘Be cREative in RE’ Interhouse, with 5 winners from each year group. The pupils had several themes to choose from including ‘Making Peace’, ‘Sacred Space’ and ‘Where is God?’ The entries were outstanding, making judging extremely difficult. (See winners below). Well done to everyone! We look forward to launching next year’s competition, and wait with baited breath for more stunning and imagination pieces of work.
On Thursday, 14th June, Mrs Weston, Mr Kelly and some year 8 lovelies: Miya Dean, Amy Stephens, Mimi Balshaw, Rebecca Swann, Cara Booth, Jess Griffiths, Karli Jo Stott, Izzy Tennant and Erica Murphy, set off to Leyland Warriors at Moss Side for an inter schools rugby tournament.
With only 2 practises under our belt and a couple of novice players we weren’t certain how we would fair…If I say we did excellently, that would be an understatement. 7 games in total against: All Hallows A and B teams, Brownedge A and B teams, Balshaw’s A and B teams and a team from Priory, saw us only let in 1 try against Balshaw’s A team. With tries throughout the competition from: Jess, Miya, Karli, Cara and an impressive 7 tries from Rebecca (who had to leave us early or undoubtedly would be in double figures), plus excellent attacking skills from fledgling Murphy, Balshaw (fast off the mark) and quick touches from Tennant and Stephens – it’s no wonder we saw ourselves as the day’s champions! An excellent effort by a new team who gelled quickly and showed each other excellent support.
Woman of the match went to Erica Murphy for her constant quick tagging of the opposition and speedily picking up an entirely new game for her. Amazing effort ladies Mr Kelly and I were very proud!
Next was our adventure to Stanley Park on Tuesday, 4th July for the Lancashire School Games event. Minus Stephens today but with Hannah Snape in tow (finally no cricket commitments!) The girls, Mr Kelly and I set off for Blackpool (there was concern Murphy wasn’t going to make it but in the nick of time she arrived – phew!) Laden with plenty of drinks, lunch, a treat or 10 and 2 umbrellas (Booth and Weston thinking ahead – sun not rain protection) we were fully prepared for our day.
We arrived in 25 degree heat and headed for the opening ceremony with around 10 boroughs taking part and hundreds of pupils aged between 7 and 15; the atmosphere was fantastic.
We played 3 games in the heats against: Rossendale, Blackburn with Darwen and Ribble Valley winning 1, drawing 1 and losing another – the heat definitely didn’t help for continuity of play and consistency but the girls held their own and defended well against some intense competition.
In the knockout stages we beat our first opponents Chorley 2 – 0 then drew 2 -2 against an amazing Pendle team. It then went to golden try, so to speak, and they were able to sneak one in.
No silverware this year and not as many games played as in last year’s tournament but a great effort from all involved. No rain, ice cream and dancing to finish – what more could we have asked for!
Wednesday, 27th June saw this year’s sports day and wow, what an event! Over 400 pupils participating in a number of events across the entire day! Javelin, shot put, discus, long/triple jump were on the agenda for the morning along with Curling and Archery – our 2 new inclusion events held in the Drama Theatre! After lunch the entire school were out on mass to cheer on and celebrate their houses achievements! Factor 50 and sun hats at the ready, even an umbrella or 10 made their appearance. Anselm were the worthy winners this year as the 2 house captains received the Sports Day Trophy off Mr Mooney.
Year 9 and 10 competed in this year’s South Ribble District Rounders competitions, placing respectively in all. The girls all performed wonderfully, demonstrating the St Mary’s spirit throughout, with constant praise and encouragement to each other. As always, the girls were an absolute pleasure to coach and umpire. Well done girls.
Year 9 Rounders team
Year 10 Rounders team
We said goodbye to our Year 11 GCSE PE pupils at the end of May. The pupils have worked really hard, especially over the last few months. Let’s hope that their hard work and revision will have paid off when they get their results in August. The Y10 pupils have just completed their end of year exam and as way of thanking most of them for their dedication to the course, a celebratory meal took place at the Ley Inn restaurant in Clayton le Woods on Thursday 12th July. After the meal a number of trophies were given out to celebrate outstanding individual achievements.
The U13 & U15 rugby teams have in action this term, playing a number of league games against other South Ribble schools. Both teams have played with spirit and courage and have done the school proud. It has been a great to see so many Year 7 pupils gain experience on the rugby field too. A special mention to both R. McMeikan and L. Weston (U13 captains) and J. Clark and J. Gregson (U15 captains) who have demonstrated fantastic leadership skills.
The U15 Team after their game v Worden away, which they narrowly lost 30-28.
Athletics practice has been incredibly well attended this term! Over 30 pupils each evening have stayed behind after school to run, jump and throw to their hearts content. Year 7 and 8 in particular have been down practising ready for sports day and Robyn Park, where our Year 10 GCSE PE pupils have been getting some last minute technique skills under their belt before Year 11 gets underway.
Robyn Park was on Friday, 29th June this year and saw Year 7, 8 and 9 pupils participate across the South Ribble District. A number of excellent individual and team performances, which when you consider the extremely warm weather, was no mean feat! St Mary’s spirit was well and truly out in form. Congratulations and well done to all!
During the Easter holidays, 47 pupils accompanied by 6 staff went on a netball and football tour to Malaga. The group stayed in a beautiful hotel, were coached by elite netball and football coaches and played competitive games against local and international clubs, including a football team from Japan! The group also explored the beautiful harbour of Puerto Banus, were fortunate to have a stadium tour of Malaga CF and have the opportunity to watch a La Liga game, where Malaga beat Villarreal 1-0. Plans will be submitted for another potential sports tour at Easter 2020. More information to follow early on in the next academic year…