Worship at St Marylebone
We believe that the whole curriculum should promote the spiritual and moral development of all pupils, although it is in school worship that the opportunity will be given for the spiritual dimension of school life to find its major expression.
As a Church of England Academy with a multi-faith and ecumenical intake, we believe that our worship, whilst in the main reflecting our Anglican tradition, should also mark the major festivals of other traditions and celebrate the spiritual and cultural diversity of our staff and pupils.
The ethos behind worship and its wider implications is based upon Colossians 3.12-17:“As God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience. Bear with one another and, if anyone has a complaint against another, forgive each other; just as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in the one body. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly; teach and admonish one another in all wisdom; and with gratitude in your hearts sing psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs to God. And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.”
In our worship we aim to:
- show reverence for God.
- express and give direction to our experiences of awe, thankfulness, humility, dedication, hope and responsibility.
- reflect the values of respect, admiration, devotion and gratitude.
- give expression to our common values and purposes.
- affirm the worth of every individual within the School community and in the wider community.
- provide experiences which strengthen attitudes and disposition so that those with a religious commitment may worship more adequately and those as yet uncommitted may develop a capacity to approach the threshold of worship.
- provide occasions when those who have a degree of commitment can express it, while those whose commitment is less can learn what an act of worship can mean to those who take an active part.
- provide an educational experience for all pupils.
- avoid exclusivity or prosyletisation.
Worship begins in St Marylebone Parish Church, our School Chapel, but then permeates the whole life of our school community. We have a Theme of the Week for each week in the school year, which is explored first with Whole School Assembly on Monday morning, with a Sixth Form Assembly or Service at Blandford Hall for year 12 or 13. We have a Whole School Eucharist once a month, enabling us to be rooted in our Anglican tradition, and to mark celebrations and commemorations throughout the year, such as Harvest, Remembrance Day, Advent, Lent, and Easter. Every day at morning registration, we have Thought for the Day, led by senior staff and students, broadcast over our school tannoy. We hold special services throughout the year, such as Founders’ Day, Student Leavers’ Services, our annual Festival of Lessons and Carols, and Choral Evensong. The Chapel also holds all major community events, such as Prize-Giving and Year 9 Celebration Evening. All worship is collaboratively led by our School Chaplain with our teachers and students across all subjects and phases, and is explored in every lesson, every extra-curricular activity, as well as in additional opportunities for prayer, discussion and reflection throughout the week. Every act of worship features cross-curricular contributions, the Performing Arts, and taps into important themes and aspects of faith and the spiritual life of our school, enabling us to reflect upon what we believe and what nourishes us in our whole lives in chapel, the classroom, the wider school and beyond, centred in a community which worships God and seeks to serve and develop the “whole child.”