Catholic Life 2020/ 2021
Lenten Prayer Spaces
Children were asked to create a Lenten prayer space at home. We are so delighted with your efforts children:
As we are in the liturgical season of Lent pupil and staff have been busying preparing school by changing their prayer areas and creating beautiful Lenten displays:
Captain Sir Tom Moore
We were very sad to hear of the passing of Captain Sir Tom Moore. We all remembered him and his family in our prayers in class and during assembly. We all wrote prayers for Captain Sir Tom Moore and put them into a book to send to his family. RIP Captain Sir Tom Moore.
Knights of St Columba Nativity Competition
Children took part in the Knights of St Columba Nativity painting competition. Children had to paint a scene that portrays the Nativity of the Lord. We had some wonderful entries and we await the result!
Each class in school acted and told a different part of the Christmas story in the school hall. They created art work for each part of the story and this was all put together in a film for children and parents to watch. Well done children, you reminded us all of the true meaning of Christmas.
We celebrated Bambinelli Mass. For the past several decades, each year on Gaudete Sunday, the Third Sunday of Advent, children (and adults) bring their Baby Jesus figures from the crib at their homes to St. Peter’s Square where the Pope will bless both the people and the figurines .All pupils made a figure of Baby Jesus and a child from each class brought these to the altar a Father Srinu blessed the figures and children will take them home.
Our Advent Prayer Garden
During Advent we have used our prayer garden as an Advent wreath. We have a tree labelled hope, peace, love and joy. We will light a tree up for each week of Advent and the children will be attaching their Advent prayers to the tree.
Advent Service of Light
To mark the beginning of Advent, we held a whole school service of light liturgy. Father Srinu joined Year 3 in the hall for this very special service. All other classes participated via zoom with liturgy leaders leading the prayers. It was a beautiful service where we all reflected on how we can prepare our hearts for Jesus.
Advent at St Columba's
Monday 30th November
Wear Purple/ Advent Craft Afternoon
To mark the beginning of Advent, on Monday 30th November children came to school wearing an item of purple clothing. All pupils were involved in an Advent craft afternoon and they prepared their class prayer focal points for this part of the liturgical year.
Please learn and say our Advent prayer with your children each day.
God of light, shine forth, Show us how to bring hope to others. God of mercy, help us to comfort your people And shine in their joy. God of hope, make us an Advent people, Preparing the way for life in all its fullness. Amen
Mini Vinnie Fundraiser
In India, for the poorest children attending school is not a given. The SVP is running its student sponsorship scheme to support children through their studies. On Friday 13th November we wore our own clothes and brought in donations to help children in India to receive the education they deserve and to help build a brighter future. Thank you for your support.
All children now have a prayer buddy from a different class in a different key stage. Year 3 pupils will have a buddy from Year 3 at St Brigid's. The children have all made a prayer card for their buddy and will continue to pray for them throughout the year.
National Youth Funday
National Youth Sunday 2020 (NYS)takes place on Sunday 22nd November, the feast of Christ the King. National Youth Sunday represents an opportunity to recognise young people -their gifts, talents and uniqueness. The theme for NYS was 'together'. On 20th November, we joined the 'Catholic Youth Ministry' for their online National Youth Funday. The day was hosted by youth ministry teams from across the country who lead us in prayer and fun activities. Cardinal Vincent Nichols began the day in prayer with music led by Joe Wells of One Hope Project. It was a wonderful day.
Remembrance/ Holy Souls:
November is the month of remembrance where we take time to remember the fallen soldiers from all wars, including those that continue today. It is also the month of Holy Souls where we remember all those who have gone before us. We celebrated a beautiful Remembrance Mass and had class Collective Worship services based around remembrance and Holy Souls. We all made an individual poppy which has been placed in our prayer garden to make our own poppy field.
In this, the month of October, we have been learning about the Rosary in our RE lessons and have been praying the Rosary during collective worship.
CAFOD- Brighten Up This Harvest
To support children globally, we ‘Brightened Up This Harvest’ by fundraising to support communities in deprived parts of the world. All money raised will support CAFOD to provide seeds and training to farmers, teaching people to build greenhouses to grow produce that isn’t destroyed by the weather. The children were encouraged to wear as many colours as they could on this day and donate some of their small change to help children like themselves globally. Thank you for your donations.
Extraordinary Missionary Month 2020
In October, Pope Francis is asking the Church to pray for this especially dedicated month to Missionary discipleship. The Pope has agreed 4 main themes for us to consider:
Below is the Activity Calendar that the children will be looking at each day in class:
October is the month dedicated to the Holy Rosary, it is a beautiful prayer and is powerful too! Please try to recite some of the prayers of the Rosary with your children. This week our Collective Worship theme is the Rosary, Children will be saying and learning about the Rosary.
We began our Sacred Silence in school. As we are unable to all gather together as we usually would, a class at a time will come to the hall each week for their Sacred Silence service. Year 5 behaved so reverently and all enjoyed this quiet time for Prayer and reflection. Well done Year 5.
Goodbye and thank you Father David
Fr David celebrated Mass as our parish priest for the last time on Wednesday 30th September. We have been so blessed to have Fr David as our parish priest and school standards committee member over the years. Thank you, Fr David, for all you have done for us as school. We will all miss you but wish you well as you begin your new role as Bishop. You will always be in our thoughts and prayers.
First Holy Communion
On Sunday 13th September our Year 4 pupils made their First Holy Communion. We were so proud of our pupils who took the next steps in their journey of faith. They were all brilliant and so beautifully presented too. Well done children.
On Wednesday 16th September the children celebrated their Going Forth Mass in school with Father David. The children had a slice of cake and cup of squash after Mass to celebrate.
Knights of St Columba
Key stage 2 children entered a Prayer competition with the Knights of St Columba. The theme of the prayer was “Protecting Children in the World today” This seemed very appropriate at this current time of the pandemic. We had some wonderful entries so lets hope we have a winner- watch this space!
Service of Commitment
On Friday 11th September our whole school community gathered together via Zoom for our Service of Commitment. It was a lovely opportunity for the whole school community to dedicate themselves to the Mission of the school. Father David joined us and the service was beautifully led by our liturgy leaders. All classes shared their new class prayers.
Catholic Life 2019/2020
29th June 2020
Good Shepherd Mass
Today we celebrated a live streamed Good Shepherd Mass with Archbishop Bernard from St Chad's Cathedral for those in school and those learning at home. The pupils and staff in school really enjoyed watching the Good Shepherd Mass . Staff from across Father Hudson’s Care also joined in this special celebration of the vital fundraising work of children with the support of their families and staff at their school.
In the month of May we pray to, and honour Our Lady. This month we encourage you to take this time to set up a May altar in your home. Set aside a special time to pray the Hail Mary, or the Rosary, as often as you can. Below are pictures of the Mary altar created by the key workers group in school:
12/13th February 2020
ST COLUMBA’S IS AN OUTSTANDING CATHOLIC PRIMARY SCHOOL’ Section 48 Inspection
We are delighted to inform you that our school has been judged as ‘OUTSTANDING’ by the Archdiocese of Birmingham. Our inspection took place on 12th/13th February 2020 and was a very thorough process. We were inspected in the following areas: Collective Worship/ Catholic Life and Religious Education – all areas were found to be outstanding! This is a brilliant achievement and accolade for our school and we are so pleased and very proud. Thank you, children, parents, staff and governors, for being so wonderful- this is as a result of everybody’s hard working efforts and the huge contributions everyone makes on a day to day basis . Time to celebrate our success!
Tuesday 11th February 2020
This morning, Year 6 were quizzed on their knowledge of their chosen Saint by their parents and teachers in preparation for their Confirmation. The children's knowledge was incredible, they handled the quick fire questions really well showing the extent of their knowledge. The children put so much time and effort into completing their research projects and the pride they showed in displaying these was wonderful to see.
A huge well done to Year 6 and a big thank you to all those who came along to make this possible and so much fun!
Friday 7th February 2020
On Friday 7th February we celebrated our golden jubilee. Archbishop Bernard Longley came to celebrate Mass with the whole school, parents, past members off staff and parishioners. It was a wonderful event celebrating the life of journey St Columba's has made over the last 50 years.
Wednesday 15th January 2020
Our Year 3 pupils have a year 7 prayer partner from St Thomas Aquinas Secondary school. Today the year 7 children joined us to celebrate Mass. After Mass the children got to meet with their prayer partner and share prayer cards that they had made for one another. Year 3 look forward to meeting their prayer partner again and remembering them in their prayers.
Wednesday 8th January 2020
The church has a custom of blessing homes on the Feast of the Epiphany and the weeks following. Family and friends gather to ask God's blessing on their homes. After Mass, Father David visited all classrooms today to bless them. We have a sign above each door with the year and initials of the wise men's names.
The God who speaks
Scripture is at the centre of everything the Church does. The word of God shapes our prayer and worship. The Bible shows us how to understand the world, how we are called to live and relate to each other.
2020 is the 10th anniversary of Verbum Domini – Pope Benedict XVI’s Apostolic Exhortation on ‘The Word of the Lord’ and the 1,600 anniversary of St Jerome’s death. These dates have inspired the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales to dedicate 2020 as a year of focus on the Bible and ‘The God Who Speaks’.
During the year, we will be celebrating, living and sharing God‘s word with an exciting new Scripture initiative. It’s an opportunity to enrich current practice and to develop and explore new ways of responding to ‘The God who Speaks’.
In our school we will be looking at ways for the children to explore and develop their familiarity with scripture and understand the relevancy with their life. All children now have a Scripture buddy who they meet with to share a Bible story with. We will be saying the prayer in all assemblies and collective worship services:
House Saint Projects
During the Christmas holidays children have been asked to research their house saint and create a project about them.
Wednesday 18th December 2019
Today we celebrated Bambinelli Mass. For the past several decades, each year on Gaudete Sunday, the Third Sunday of Advent, children (and adults) bring their Baby Jesus figures from the crib at their homes to St. Peter’s Square where the Pope will bless both the people and the figurines .All pupils made a figure of Baby Jesus and a child from each class brought these to the altar at the beginning of Mass. Father David blessed the figures and children will take them home. We also invited parents with babies to Mass and they were also blessed.
10th &13th December
Suzanne O'Malley, our three parishes co-ordinator, visited school to lead Advent retreat sessions with pupils as part of their Advent faith journey.
Festive Homeless Packs
The Mini Vinnies have been working with the SVP at Our Lady’s to come up with ideas of how we can help the homeless this Christmas. On November 29th each class wore their own clothes to school and bought in toiletries that could be put together to make a festive pack for the homeless. The Mini Vinnies put the items and put a Christmas card in the packs. Young Vincentians from St Thomas Aquinas school came to help prepare the packs. Staff distributed these to homeless people in Birmingham city centre.
Wednesday 13th November 2019
The children came to school dressed in their pyjamas today to raise money for ten sewing machines for families in India to set up businesses. This was organised by our Mini Vinnies. Thank you for your contributions children.
11th November 2019
Vocare is the Latin word for 'to call' - and as a Catholic school we believe the biggest calling we hear is from God. We are called to be holy, called to follow God in our lives, called to use our gifts at work.
During week beginning 11th November the children from St Columba’s took part in Vocations week. In this time, we think about what we are called to be. Vocations is not simply about jobs and the future - it is living out our calling to serve God in every day. Every human is called by God. Our gifts are not just for us; the gifts that God gives us are there to be shared. This is where vocations come from - we believe that every one of us has a calling to share our gifts. The children had lots of exciting visitors in school to talk about what God had called them to be. The children were visited by: a midwife, nun, civil engineer, a member of the SVP, a police man, the head of our academy and Father David. The liturgy leaders lead us in a beautiful whole school prayer service on Friday afternoon.
Wednesday 13th November 2019
November is the month of remembrance where we take time to remember the fallen soldiers from all wars, including those that continue today. We celebrated a beautiful Remembrance Mass, which year 1 beautifully led, and have had several Collective Worship sessions based around remembrance. We all made an individual poppy which has been beautifully put together to make a class wreath. These were brought to the altar at the beginning of Mass.
Thursday 24th October 2019
Mini Vinnie parish afternoon tea
On Thursday 24th October our Years 5 and 6 Mini Vinnies attended an Autumn themed afternoon tea for the elderly in our parish. The afternoon tea was held in the parish hall and the children served the cakes and enjoyed chatting to those who came. They also performed a range of songs for the visitors and helped with the raffle. The Mini Vinnies enjoyed getting to know members of the SVP and parishioners from Our Lady’s. The visitors were very impressed by their hard work, good manners, obvious enthusiasm and beautiful singing It was a truly wonderful afternoon enjoyed by all.
Sacred Silence Prayer Station
Feedback from the children about our prayer garden has been very positive and the children said that they have enjoyed having a different quiet space to pray. We decided the create an indoor quiet area for the children to go to for prayer and reflection. This can be used during break times, lunchtimes or after school. Children can place their prayers in the prayer box and these will be offered up during Mass every Wednesday.
Monday 14th October 2019
Blessing of the Newman Room.
On Monday 14th October we celebrated the Canonisation of John Henry Newman. The whole school gathered together with Father David and children from St Joseph’s, St Brigid’s and St Thomas Aquinas joined us. Our Newman room was blessed and a new plaque was put on the door. The children wrote prayers to John Henry Newman, created displays about his life and learned hymns for the celebration.
Rosary Live Link
The month of October is dedicated to the Rosary and on Wednesday 9th October, Archbishop Bernard led a very special prayer service at St Chad’s Cathedral in Birmingham.
We were able to view and participate in this event via a live video stream and we joined together in prayer and reflection as Archbishop Bernard led the Rosary and the sharing of the Joyful Mysteries.
The children used their own Rosary beads and thoroughly enjoyed participating in this very special event.
Monday 7th October 2019
Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament
On Monday 7th October, pupils from Reception to Year 6 were given the opportunity to adore the Blessed Sacrament, experiencing the real presence of Jesus Christ in their lives. It was a beautiful, prayerful day and our pupils and staff were extremely reverent during this special experience. Throughout lunchtime, staff adored the Blessed Sacrament, offering their own thoughts and prayers in quiet reflection. Thank you to Father David who brought the Blessed Sacrament to school
This is what some of our children said about their experience:
This is what some of our children said about their experience:
Y2 - Lucy, “It was so peaceful and calm and I felt like Jesus was with me’
Y4 - Ashleigh,. "Adoration made me feel happy because I could spend more time praying alone. I felt I was lucky because I have my family and friends who love me. I will try to be more kind to my family and friends
Y6 - Sid “I felt alone and only God was with me. It felt very holy. I felt like Jesus was sitting right next to me.”
Sunday 6th October 2019
Mini Vinnie Mass at Our Lady's
On Sunday 6th October our Mini Vinnies celebrated Mass as Our Lady's. After Holy Communion the children stood at the Altar and read their prayer and pledge. Anisa informed the congregation of the projects that we are undertaking this half term and how we are supporting the parish SVP. After Mass, the children collected money for the SVP. They raised £45. Well done children!
Year 5 cake sale:
Year 5 children organised a whole school cake sale to raise money for Queen Elizabeth Hospital. They chose a date, created posters to put up around school and organised the sale on the day. We raised £136! Well done year 5.
Monday 30th September 2019
The children met with their prayer partners and had some time to pray together. They then made a Rosary ring and spent time together in the chapel. During the afternoon the children met with a photographer from The Sower magazine (diocese magazine) and had photos taken to accompany an article about the MAC.
A Prayer bag has been put together for each class. Prayer bags are sent home every Monday with a child to use for prayer together as a family. A prayer journal is included for parents and children to include their thoughts, feelings, prayers and intention’s before returning it to school for the next family. On Wednesday 25th September Father David blessed the prayer bags before they are sent home.
Mini Vinnie Commissioning Mass
After Mass on Wednesday 11th September 2019 we welcomed and commissioned our Mini Vinnies for this year. Father David presented the children with a certificate and they shared their prayer and pledge with the school. They informed the school on upcoming projects for Autumn term which will include raising money for ten families in India to buy sewing machines to set up businesses, organising a parish afternoon tea and creating Christmas gift packs for the homeless. Congratulations children on your commitment to Mini Vinnies and we look forward to seeing your works throughout the year.
Service of Commitment
On Friday 6th September our whole school community gathered together for our Service of Commitment. It was a lovely opportunity for the whole school community to dedicate themselves to the Mission of the school. Father David joined us and the service was beautifully led by our liturgy leaders. All classes shared their new class prayers.
We have decided to transform the grassy area at the front of school into a Prayer Garden. Our intention is to create a beautiful, spiritual and sacred space where children and staff can get close to God and nature. We will be holding a lunchtime time prayer group in our prayer garden every Wednesday and all are invited. Classes will also be timetabled to use the prayer garden throughout the year for their class prayer services. Parents and visitors are also welcome to sit in our prayer garden for a time of quiet prayer and reflection.
Catholic Life 2018/ 2019
During the year, the Liturgy Leaders from Key Stage 2 have joined together with the Liturgy Leaders from across Lumen Christi MAC. During the sessions the children have explored their beliefs, their own faith, shared ideas and taken activities back to school. The children have developed friendships with other schools and regularly remember these children in their prayers.
First Holy Communion
It was wonderful to join as a school community, parish community and with families to celebrate the children's First Holy Communion. We will continue to keep them in our prayers as they continue on their journey of faith.
First Holy Communion
Parents have joined their children in school for a First Holy Communion workshop and Prayer Service. Keep our children in your prayers as they prepare for their First Holy Communion on Saturday 8th June.
During Lent, our Year 3 children met with their Year 7 Prayer Partners from St Thomas Aquinas Secondary School. Year 7 came and joined us for mass and then spent time with their Prayer Partner getting to know them.
During Lent, each class is holding a Class Liturgy. Parents are all welcome to join their children for a quiet time of reflection during their Lenten journey.
Lent - Ash Wednesday
As well as celebrating mass today, children and staff came to school in purple to represent the start of Lent.
As we prepare to start our Lenten journey, we have made promises to help us following Jesus during this special time. Our prayer tables have also got purple cloths on to represent this time of repentance and preparation.
Over the last few weeks we have been collecting food donations for the foodbank collection. Thank you for your generous donations again for the B30 Foodbank. It is wonderful to know that donations from school will go to help those in need.
This afternoon, Year 6 were quizzed on their knowledge of their chosen Saint by their parents and teachers in preparation for their Confirmation. The children's knowledge was incredible, they handled the quick fire questions really well showing the extent of their knowledge. The children put so much time and effort into completing their research projects and the pride they showed in displaying these was wonderful to see.
A huge well done to Year 6 and a big thank you to all those who came along to make this possible and so much fun!
Staff and children decided that as the festive homeless packs were such a success last year, we wanted to do the same again. So, each class and staff donated items to put in packs for the homeless including chocolate and toiletries. Then Liturgy Leaders and the Mini Vinnies helped put the packs together and classes made Christmas cards to go in the packs too. Staff and members of the SVP at Our Lady's went out onto the streets of Birmingham and handed out the packs.
November is the month of remembrance where we take time to remember the fallen soldiers from all wars, including those that continue today. Year 5 led the whole school in a beautiful prayer service. During the prayer service each class laid the wreath that they had made. These were then displayed in school during the month of November.
We will be learning about the Liturgical seasons in the churches year, these seasons are reflected in our prayer tables in every classroom. We have a new display in the hall which each class helped to make and put together. We will spent time looking at the display during our Gospel assembly. We also have a Liturgical calendar in our classrooms that we can refer to during the year.
On Tuesday 22nd May we held a fundraising activities afternoon to raise money for a new prayer garden. Thank you for all your generous donations.
During the week of the 21st May the children took part in Vocations Week. The children had lots of exciting visitors in school to talk about what God had called them to be. The children were visited by a social worker, a nurse, a professor, a policeman and Father David.
It was a thoroughly enjoyable time and the children had the opportunity to really evaluate their purpose in life and think about their own future. The week ended with a whole school vocations prayer service led by Father David and the Liturgy leaders.
On Sunday 20th May St Columba's and St James primary took part in a May procession. The children bought flowers to crown Our Lady. We joined together in the school playground to say prayers and sing hymns dedicated to Mary.
First Holy Communion workshop
Father David and parents were invited to school to take part in a First Holy Communion workshop with the children.
The liturgy group have met with Mrs Simmons to discuss how we can improve collective worship in school. They would like there to be a prayer garden outside. As part of a homework competition children have been asked to design a prayer garden. A winner will be chosen.
In class the children have been learning about their school Saint; St Columba. During the Easter holidays, children were asked to create projects about St Columba. Some wonderful projects were produced and are displayed near the entrance to school.
Every two weeks we gather together for a whole school silent prayer service. The candles were lit, quiet music was playing and we listened to a reflection. Then we had time for our own private prayers and intentions.
Stations of the Cross
During Lent we walk with Jesus on the road to Calvary as we take part in a key stage liturgy of Stations of the Cross. Father David joined us and children wrote and led the reflections.
Mini Vinnie Easter Packs
As our festive homeless packs were such a success, the Mini Vinnies decided that we should make some easter egg packs for the homeless. They held a cake sales during Lent and asked children to bring in easter egg donations. We had lots of eggs donated and were able to make lots of packs. Staff and members of the SVP at Our Lady's went out onto the streets of Birmingham and handed out the packs.
SVP Festive Afternoon Tea
Members of our Mini Vinnies met with Pauline from the SVP at Our Lady's and decided to host a festive afternoon tea for elderly members of the parish. In order to raise money for the food, the Mini Vinnies suggested that we hold a whole school own clothes day and donations could be made. Miss Gibson and year 5 were asked to organise the event by making invitations, table decorations and learning Christmas hymns and songs to perform. We had a great afternoon!
Mini Vinnie Festive Homeless Packs
Our Mini Vinnies decided that they wanted to help and support the local homeless people during the festive season. They decided that we should have an own clothes day and ask children to donate toiletries. The Mini Vinnies put the toiletries into packs and made Christmas cards to go in them. Staff and members of the SVP at Our Lady's went out onto the streets of Birmingham and distributed the packs to the homeless.
Our Liturgy Leaders met with all of the Liturgy groups from our Lumen Christi Academy school. They took part in a retreat afternoon and shared liturgy. The children discussed ways in which they can work together this year and plan shared liturgies.
November is the month of remembrance where we take time to remember the fallen soldiers from all wars, including those that continue today. We celebrated a beautiful Remembrance Mass and have had collective worship services based around remembrance. Each class made a poppy wreath. On their poppy they wrote the name of a deceased loved one or wrote a prayer. We have also been keeping a remembrance book in our school office and staff, parents and children have been writing down the name of a deceased loved one that they would like to pray for.
St Columba's Mini Vinnies made their commitment to supporting the work of SVP by receiting their pledge and prayer in our whole school Mass. Father David, our Parish Priest, led them in their mission and then handed the children a certificate and badge. We congratulated them as they continue their work by 'turning concern into action'.
Pauline from the SVP came into school to talk to the children about the work of the SVP.
This evening, Year 6 were quizzed on their knowledge of their chosen Saint by their parents and teachers in preparation for their Confirmation. The children wowed us with how they handled the pressure of the quick fire questions, the knowledge they have learnt since completing their research project and the pride they showed in displaying these.
A huge well done to Year 6 and a big thank you to all those who came along to make this possible and so much fun! See some of the photos from the evening..
We will be learning about the Liturgical seasons in the churches year. We have a new display in the hall which each class helped to make and put together. We will refer to this each week during our Gospel assembly. We also have a Liturgical calendar in our classrooms.