As you enter our beautiful school, it is immediately apparent that this is a Catholic school. We wear our Catholicism with commitment and pride. Adorning many of the walls around school are images and quotes from sacred scripture; in every classroom, you’ll find our Lord’s Cross; in and our school courtyard, a huge statue of our patron saint, St Edmund Campion keeps watch over all.
The Chapel is the heart of our school, where students are invited to pray, retreat, be still or spend time before the Most Blessed Sacrament. We are very fortunate that the Blessed Sacrament remains present in the Chapel all day, every day. Through the Blessed Sacrament, the true presence of Jesus is never too far away at St Edmund Campion. The Chapel is always open for pupils to visit and we welcome those of all different faiths and also those of no faith at all.
Every form room has a designated Prayer Point. In most classrooms, this is at the very front and centre of the room. Sacred scripture teaches us to, “Seek ye first the Kingdom of God,” so prayer takes priority in our school day. Every single day begins with prayer and, as pupils listen to and reflect on the Word of God, their attention and praise is directed towards the crucifix and/or candle on their Prayer Point. As pupils go forth from their form groups to enjoy a rich and diverse curriculum, they are constantly in sight of Jesus, who watches from the Prayer Point in every classroom.
As pupils progress through primary education, they are exposed to a great number of prayers. Often, by the end of their time in secondary education, many of these prayers are long forgotten. To prevent this from happening and to ensure that pupils are equipped with all of the words that they might possibly need in order to speak with God, every form group is provided with a new prayer to pray each month. Where possible, these prayers reflect the liturgical season. For example, pupils are invited to seek God’s mercy during the season of Lent by praying the Confiteor. Each month, the new prayer is displayed above the Prayer Point in every classroom and it is also included in the weekly presentation for ‘Sacred Time, Sacred Space’.
During the late 19th century, when the Dominican sisters lived and prayed on the site of our school, Rosary Walk, one of two main thoroughfares into our school, was used as its name would suggest, to pray the Rosary. The sisters would walk up and down this road, enjoying the beauty and serenity of nature whilst praying each decade of the Holy Rosary. During May 2022, the month of Mary, we were keen to re-establish this tradition. With the help of the site team, five wooden plaques were erected along this route, each one depicting one of the five Joyful Mysteries. Today, pupils are invited to enjoy these Mysteries as they enter and leave our school, either by praying to Mary, our Mother, or by simply acknowledging them.