Reflection and Prayers
At St. Richard's, reflection time is a really important part of our school day. All year groups lead and participate in reflection on a regular basis, allowing them to take a moment with God. Each week the children focus on a theme, thinking about how they can embed this in their daily lives and use it to live out our School Mission.
"I call on you, my God, for you will answer me; turn your ear to me and hear my prayer." Psalm 17:6
Advent Prayer Breakfast - December 2023
On Friday 8th December we invited all of our families in to share an Advent prayer breakfast with us. The morning began with a reflection, all about the Nativity story and how this story is one of hope, humility, love, joy and peace. There was time to sit and reflect quietly and then we enjoyed breakfast together. It was so wonderful to see so many families to attend, we had over 45 families.
"Do not be afraid Mary, for you have found favor with God." Luke 1:30
Blessing of Advent Wreath and Christmas Tree - December 2023
On Monday 4th December Fr John came to school and blessed the Advent Wreath and Christmas Tree. It was so lovely to bless these and Fr had prepared a blessing for each one.
Advent Mass - December 2023
On the 1st December, we celebrated Advent with a mass with Fr Leo. It was such a lovely way to start the beginning of Advent. Fr Leo told us all about the candles on the advent wreath and what each one represents. He reminded us that Christmas is all about Hope, Peace, Love and Joy. Year 5 led the mass with the readings, prayers and offertory. Parents and governors were invited to our special advent mass.
Staff and Governors Deanery Mass - October 2023
On Wednesday 18th October, staff, governors and Clergy from the Deanery gathered together for the annual Deanery Mass. Mass took place at our school and was celebrated by Fr John Panario. It was a lovely occasion and so nice to come together to celebrate the work that we all do within our schools. Pupils from St. Edmund's Catholic Secondary School, also sang in the choir which was beautiful.
"And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them altogether in perfect unity." Colossians 3:14
Year Three Class Assembly - October 2023
Year 3's class assembly was all about the reflection theme for the week, sharing. The children read the story of Elijah and the Widow, who shared her flour with a starving Elijah, and they also acted out the story. The children sang a song of bringing gifts to the harvest table. They learnt the sign language for 'Joy, Joy, Joy.' The class finished their assembly by sharing their artwork and reading their prayers, thanking God for the world, whilst remembering the importance of sharing with others. What a wonderful message to share!
Harvest Mass - October 2023
On Friday 6th October, we celebrated Harvest, coming together for mass with Fr Leo. During Mass, the children led the prayers and readings and we thought about all that we have and all that we can do to help others. During mass we thought about God's faithfulness in continuing to provide for Humanity.
"Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up." Galatians 6:9
Welcome Assembly - September 2023
To welcome our new Reception children into our school family, we gathered together to celebrate our new children. The Year 6 children introduced their new buddies to the school and they lit a children. The candle is a reminder that we are all responsible for keeping their candle burning whilst they are at St. Richard's. It was a wonderful assembly, and our new parents were also welcomed in to our school family.
"Contribute to the needs of God's people and welcome strangers into your home." Romans 12:13
KCSP Welcome Mass - September 2023
On Wednesday 27th September, we took part in the KCSP Welcome Mass at Aylesford Priory, alongside all the other schools in the Trust. The sun was shining and it was wonderful to come together as one family, to pray, reflect and give thanks.
"Let all that you do, be done in love." 1 Corinthians 16:14
Welcome Back Blessing - September 2023
To celebrate our return to school and the beginning of a new academic year, Fr Leo joined us for our Gospel assembly and gave us all a blessing. It was a lovely start to the year!
The Lord says "I will guide you along the best pathway for your life." Psalm 32:8
Father's Day Mass - June 2023
On Friday 16th June we celebrated mass together with Samphire class leading the readings and prayers. Fr Jamie and Deacon Barry came to school to celebrate with us and parents were also invited.
"For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only son." John 3:16
Blessing for the New King - May 2023
Fr Leo came into school to share a blessing with us for the new King. We said some prayers together and prayed for the the new King's reign and the life of our nation.
Mass for Mary - May 2023
On Friday 19th May we celebrated Mary with a mass in school led by Fr Jamie. The mass was beautiful and allowed our community to come together to think about Mary, Our Mother. The Year 6 children led the prayers and readings. The children were invited to bring in flowers to lay beside Mary during the offertory and songs were sung.
And the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God." Luke 1:30
Peace Prayer - April 2023
During our Gospel assembly, Hettie wrote this beautiful prayer all about peace. The prayer was written with such thought and care and was shared with the school.
The story of the crucifixion - March 2023
On Wednesday 29th March Year 5 and 6 retold the story of the crucifixion during a whole school assembly. The assembly really made us think about the events that took place and reflect on how Jesus died to save our sins.
"It was now about the sixth hour, and there was darkness over the whole land until the ninth hour, while the sun's light failed. And the curtain of the temple was torn in two. Then Jesus, calling out with a loud voice, said, "Father, into your hands I commit my spirit!" Luke 23:44
The Story of Palm Sunday - March 2023
On Monday 27th March, EYFS and Key Stage 1 told the rest of the school all about the first part of the Easter story, Palm Sunday. Their story telling was amazing and as well as telling the story, songs were sand and prayers were read.
“They took branches of palm trees and went forth to meet him, and cried, Hosanna! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!” John 12:13
Lenten Prayer Breakfast - March 2023
On Thursday 23rd March, children and parents were invited to school to share in a Lenten Reflection and prayers, as well as having breakfast. It was such a lovely way to start the day, thinking about the Easter story, with around 65 families joining us.
Donations were made for the Lenten Breakfast and all of the money raised was used to support our chosen charity Cafod.
Mother's Day Mass - March 2023
We invited all our mothers and grandmothers to school for a very special Mother's day mass. Fr Leo came to help celebrate all mothers and it was wonderful to see so many people at mass. The Year 5 class led the prayers and readings. During mass we also remembered Mary, Jesus' mother and mother to all of us.
Ash Wednesday Mass - February 2023
On Wednesday 22nd of February we celebrated Ash Wednesday as a whole school. Deacon Barry came to school to distribute ashes and celebrate this special day with us. Deacon Barry told us that Ash Wednesday marks the beginning of Lent and how Lent is a time for sharing, fasting and praying.
"Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord." Psalm 27:14
Reflection at St. Richard's
Year 6 and Year R share Reflection Time - February 2023
During the last week of term three, Year 6 and Year R decided to share reflection time with each other. It was so lovely. The theme for the week was Honesty and when the children were asked what this means to them, this is what they said:
Honesty means telling things that are true.
Honesty means you do not lie.
Honesty means you do not make up stories but you say what happens.
You can be honest with yourself by being truthful.
If someone says "you are perfect", be honest and admit that you are not perfect because no one is.
If you argue with your friends, be honest about what happens and admit you might have done something wrong.
By sharing our reflection with Castle Class, we can teach our buddies.
Our buddies will pass on knowledge when they become Y6 buddies.
Candlemas - February 2023
On Friday 3rd February we celebrated candlemas with Fr Leo. Each class took their class candles to Fr Leo to be blessed. Candlemas is also known as the celebration of the feast of the presentation of Jesus which can be found in the Gospel of Luke 2:22 - 40.
"When Joseph and Mary had done everything required by the Law of the Lord, they returned to Galilee to their own town of Nazareth. And the child grew and became strong; he was filled with wisdom, and the grace of God was on him." Luke 2:39
A prayer for Pope Benedict - January 2023
During reflection time, the whole school took a moment to pause and reflect upon the life of Pope Benedict on the day of his funeral. Afterwards, this lovely prayer was written by one of our pupils, who shared it with the whole school.
Advent Prayer Breakfast - Thursday 8th December 2022
On Thursday 8th December we held our very first Advent Prayer Breakfast and it was lovely. Children and parents were invited to come and share in our Advent reflection and to enjoy breakfast together. It was wonderful to see so many people at this special time.
An advent prayer to share at home:
God of Love,
Your son, Jesus, is your greatest gift to us.
He is a sign of your love.
Help us walk in that love during the weeks of Advent,
As we wait and prepare for his coming.
We pray in the name of Jesus, our Savior.
Celebrating St. Nicholas - Monday 5th December 2022
On Monday 5th December, year 4 told us all about St. Nicholas in a whole school assembly. This was really special and we then knew lots the following day, ready for when we celebrated the feast of St. Nicholas.
We learnt that St. Nicholas is the patron saint of sailors, travellers, clergy and school children, having devoted his life to serving the less fortunate and those in need. Celebrating St. Nicholas Day offers a time to reflect on that spirit of caring for others by exchanging gifts and surprising loved ones with little unexpected signs that you care!
Advent Mass - Friday 25th November 2022
On Friday 25th November Fr Jamie came into school to celebrate Advent with us. The whole school celebrated together in mass and it was a time to reflect on the meaning of advent.
Advent is the time we prepare and wait and for the celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ at Christmas.
Celebrating Harvest - October 2022
In October we came together to think about and celebrate harvest. The children and staff were invited to donate items to the local food bank, as we thought about the importance of sharing. So many items were donated, such kindness and support from our school community. Fr Geoff came into school to celebrate with us.
"Though it is the smallest of all seeds, yet when it grows, it is the largest of garden plants and becomes a tree, so that the birds come and perch in its branches." Matthew 13:32
Celebrating with our Partnership Schools - September 2022
On Wednesday 28th September pupils from our school attended mass at Aylesford Priory with all of our friends from the Kent Catholic Schools' Partnership. Archbishop John Wilson celebrated mass with us and it was such a beautiful day. Some of our pupils took part in the welcome procession. It was so wonderful to come together with other schools to celebrate the beginning of a new academic year.
Reflection and Prayer for HM Queen Elizabeth II September 2022
Today, we marked the passing of the Queen with a time of silent reflection in the hall together. The children created a beautiful and thoughtful prayer which was shared with the whole school.
Lord our Father,
We thank you for the Queen and everything she has done for us.
We thank her for her sacrifices and her love for all of us.
Please bless her and welcome her into the light.
We pray for her family and ask that you keep them safe.
We hope that some of you may find this prayer useful.
A Blessing For Our New School Year - September 2022
On Wednesday 7th September, Fr Jeff led a blessing of the school. It was a wonderful moment where the children listened carefully to his message. He showed them a plant from his garden which had some of the flowers in bloom and others still as buds. He told the school it represented the different stages of their learning and that to bloom fully they needed to think carefully about their learning and the opportunities school had to offer. The flower was then laid at the feet of Mary on our alter in the hall.
Prayer Vigil for the Ukraine Crisis - March 2022
On Tuesday 1st March we had a peaceful and reflective prayer vigil involving St Richard's families and staff. It was a wonderful moment led by Fr Jamie. A prayer was shared (written by Mr Taylor) which had been shared across the KCSP to be used in assemblies in every KCSP school. Afterwards, many families wanted to help those in need and Mr Taylor told us that he had been helping with aid where he lives. Since then families have donated lots of goods. Another member of staff (Miss Jordan) has a brother travelling to the Ukrainian border to share aid collected locally. The school has shared this information and has become a temporary collection site for this delivery. The aim is to send this physical aid on Tuesday 8th March 2022.
Holy and Gracious God
We pray for the people of Ukraine and the people of Russia; for their countries and their leaders.
We pray for all those who are afraid; that your everlasting arms hold them in this time of great fear.
We pray for all those who have the power over life and death; that they will choose for all people life, and life in all its fullness.
We pray for those who chose war; that they will remember that you direct your people to turn our swords into ploughshares and seek for peace.
We pray for leaders on the world stage; that they are inspired by the wisdom and courage of Christ.
Above all, Lord today we pray for peace for Ukraine.
And we ask this is in the name of your blessed son.
Thanksgiving Parish Mass - January 2022
On Sunday 30th January Fr Jeff led a wonderful Thanks Giving Mass for the teachers, Support staff, S.L.T., Grounds staff, K.C.S.P. and Office staff of all the Catholic Schools in the Deanery. Many staff members and Academic Committee members were present for this thoughtful and touching Mass. It was lovely to come together to give thanks and praise for our schools.
Thanksgiving Mass - October 2021
On Tuesday 19th October Mrs Huotari, Mr Taylor and 2 of our Year 6 pupils went to St. Simon Stock Secondary School to celebrate mass together with the other 23 schools within our Trust. Whilst the remainder of the school were not able to attend in person, we were able to live stream the event across the school and join in.
As part of the mass, each school was given a special School Candle to commemorate the celebration. It was a lovely to meet others from the schools in our deanery.
Mary our Mother - May 2021
On Tuesday 11th May 2021, the children and staff of St. Richard’s celebrated Mary, Our Blessed Mother, with a short prayer service that was streamed live from St. Paul’s Church with Fr. Leo. The children learnt many things about Mary, namely Fr. Leo's key message which was that Mary represents 4 key things to us. She is: Our Mother, Our Model, Our Queen of Heaven and she Shows Us Her Love and Prays for us.
As part of this celebration, all children were invited to bring in fresh flowers that were blessed during the service and then laid with Mary on our school altar, the front office and outside the building. The school was full of beautiful flowers which we thank all of our wonderful families for!
These are the prayers that we say together in School. Why not try saying some at home too.