This week's message from Andrew Teale, Diocesan Director of Education
Love in an Asteroid Field
What can I write that will help you today? Would you like me to write about the new government white paper…or the green paper…or climate challenges…or the madness of Russia’s heinous actions in Ukraine? All important. Things we cannot ignore but perhaps those are not for today’s message.
Would you like me to express the continued thanks of a grateful diocese for your incredible resilience and highly skilled work in our schools? I have done that many times and it never seems to be enough.
Many may not even get enough time to read my writings today and will simply be focussed on ensuring that the term ends well for the children and then head for home as soon as they can. That seems like a great plan to me. You’ve probably had a week like an asteroid field where problems hit you from all directions. Where you don’t see them coming, whichever way you turn. In truth the whole term has been an asteroid field in our schools (once again), but the clearing is now ahead of you. Time for some peace and empty space.
As we enter Holy Week, the last week in Lent (or the bit from Palm Sunday until Easter Sunday), there is so much we can write and say about what it all means for us today. So much to say and think theologically. So much we can learn, but I know that school people are a little short on energy, so I thought I’d keep it short today.
On Palm Sunday we think about Jesus arriving in Jerusalem on a humble donkey, cheered by the crowds waving their palm leaves. All the time knowing what awaited him as step by step He drew closer to gates of the city.
Humiliation. Ridicule. Torture. Death.
Friends and loved ones looking on. Looking up at him. Pity. Sorrow.
Click here to continue to read Andrew's message.
Could a Small Grant from St Peter’s Saltley Trust
help make your bright idea happen?
St Peter's Saltley Trust funds and supports creative projects in three main areas: 1) school religious education; 2) faith and the further education sector; 3) Christian learning, discipleship and theological education.
Each year, the Trust's small grants fund offers around 10 grants of approx. £500 each for one-off, time-limited projects in any of the three areas of work listed above. This might, for example, help to cover the costs of running a conference, exhibition or event, developing a set of learning resources, developing training, or undertaking some action research.
To be eligible, projects should have an explicitly religious and explicitly educational dimension, and should in some way be creative and innovative. The heart of the Trust's work is with Christian religious education, but multi-faith or interfaith projects (including multi-faith RE) may be considered within this. The Trust is unable to give grants to cover capital projects. For a full list of eligibility criteria please see their website: https://www.saltleytrust.org.uk/what-we-support
There are four deadline dates for applications for small grants each year, usually February, April, September and November (please check exact dates if wanting to apply). Usual replies are within 2 - 3 weeks.
Carbon Zero Forum Revised Date: 12th May 2022
The next forum meeting will now run on 12th May. So you if you are a Headteacher, School Business Manager, Governor, part of the SLT or an Eco Group Lead that works in this important aspect of our schools, it would be great to see you. We look forward to seeing representation from all our church schools. To book your place on Thursday 12th May 2022 at 3.30 - 4.30pm, please click on this link.
Forthcoming Diocesan Online Training & Development Highlights
SIAMS Training and Support
RE & Christian Ethos
If you would like to talk through any of the support and training on offer from the Education Team, please contact us via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or call on 07539 372748.
The worship video for the first week back after the holidays is ready. We carry on exploring one of the resurrection accounts as the encounter on the Road to Emmaus is retold (Luke 24). We reflect on how we might miss things in front of us due to being too distracted and ponder why Jesus kept his identify secret for the walk. These videos are made available for our partnership schools, who also receive a sheet for pupils to use in class, school or church providing further ideas for prayer and reflection.
If you would like your school community to benefit from our weekly Collective Worship Videos, please contact the Education Team at email@example.com or call on 07539 372748 and we can talk through the Partnership Agreement options available to you.
|Andrew Teale's Message Continued...
Why did He do it? Why did He continue and not just turn around, head away from Jerusalem and seek safety? He knew what awaited him. He knew what they would do, yet He continued into the very heart of the old city.
He did it out of love, of course.
Limitless, unquenchable, abundant, unconquerable, unconditional love.
Love for you and for me.
Love for who you are, as you are.
Love that welcomes you home, no matter what.
Love that lifts you up or props you up or stands you back up.
Love in abundance.
Love that enfolds you.
Love that remains to this day.
Our schools are places of abundant love,
Even in the asteroid field of daily life.
Where it gathers and multiplies.
Love which connects and protects.
Love which motivates and inspires.
Love which develops and enables.
Love which forgives and forgives and forgives.
Love which keeps us turning up for work and do the best we can for them.
Love which fuels unending Grace.
Love which affirms we made the right choice as we dedicate our lives to service of children and young people in our nurseries and schools and colleges.
Love which is there for us too, when we begin each new day.
Love which carries us to the last day.
Lord of all life and power,
who through the mighty resurrection of your Son
overcame the old order of sin and death
to make all things new in him:
grant that we, being dead to sin
and alive to you in Jesus Christ,
may reign with him in glory;
to whom with you and the Holy Spirit
be praise and honour, glory and might,
now and in all eternity.
…but I would also like to express the continued thanks of a grateful diocese for your incredible resilience and highly skilled work in our schools this term. You have been a wonderful blessing to the children and families in your community, whether they all know it or not.
Sincere best wishes from me and the education team to you and yours for a Blessed Easter holiday and a well-earned break from the asteroids.
Canon Andrew Teale
Diocesan Director of Education