Well… it’s been a long time since we were doing a schools week! In fact, the last one we did was back in the first week of April in Salisbury! It was so exciting to know that we were going to be back amongst the young people again in this way.
Mayflower High School is relatively close to where I live in Billericay and I know quite a few faces from Billericay Baptist Church who attend there. We were working alongside Schools Ministries Billericay (SMB) with the invitation to the schools from themselves and Churches Together Billericay. The way the timetable had been worked out was that we were to do Thursday and Friday and then the following Monday and Tuesday in Mayflower before moving on to another school on the Wednesday.
Mayflower did come with a few challenges! We were given a classroom to use for our lessons which we have done in the past. It meant that we were performing acoustically which was fine as we had done it before. However, the classroom we had been given was the THIRD floor, up several flights of stairs! Luckily, we were able to use the lift, but setting up and packing down was a slight challenge because there was such a long distance between the van and the classroom!
We also were very privileged to be able to have such nice weather for our time in the school. It did mean that the classroom became very hot very quickly with the amount of bodies that were in there and with all of our equipment running!
However, the time we spent in that school was BRILLIANT! We had a full timetable of RS lessons and got to see a wide range of the year groups, from the year 10s to the year 7s. Recognizing that this week was our last week of teaching RS/RE as a team we were taking the opportunity to try new things in the lessons; different individuals leading different parts and maybe stepping out of their comfort zone.
I shared a lot over that week my testimony in the ‘Forgiveness’ lesson. Talking about how hard some situations can be to forgive when you are so hurt and feel let down by someone you love but how God is helping me in my life to start to think about it. They really listen as a share and some even look shocked to hear my story. I feel it really resonates with many lives as being from a broken home seems to be quite common now.
Throughout our time in Mayflower, we were visited and assisted by the SMB team who came and advertised Fun In The Park which is happening on the 29th June. They have a great connection with the school and it is great to hear of the things they are doing to reach out to the young people. Please pray for them, that after our visit in the school they will receive more questions from the young people in the school and will continue to create a good friendship with them. It was great working with Liz, Ruth and Gary during our time Mayflower High School.
Some of the students had some interesting questions that they asked after our lessons and we are praying that it won’t be the end of their questioning, that they will keep wondering about what we have said and want to know more. The teachers were very appreciative that we were doing what we were doing and they seem to hint that they would like us to return. God was moving in that school and it is exciting that I was able to be part of that this week.