Following the Pope’s call
It is one year since the publication of the papal encyclical ‘Laudato Si’: On Care for our Common Home’, a call for us all to care for our planet.
In the spirit of this encyclical we have been marking the anniversary at St Augustine’s Priory with ‘Laudato Si’ week. We have filled the week with positive action that speaks of our commitment to our planet.
Monday 20th June began with something that hit all of us – ‘no paper day’! No worksheets to be used in classrooms, no printing, no photocopying. School Office Manager, Mrs Tina Sumpter commented, ‘No paper day really made us think about the way we use paper. For example, instead of printing forms for teachers I scanned and emailed them, so that the process could all be done online.’
Tuesday saw the Lower VI taking up the baton with a Walk to School day. Anastasia Petrovic sets a good example by walking to and from school every day but on this day was emulated by many of her classmates. Nicoletta Bencka and Amy Dhindsa joined forces by walking together while Rebecca Shoesmith triumphed by walking eleven kilometres during the day. Amy said, ‘a lot took part in this day – it was good exercise’.
Wednesday saw the test of ‘no electricity day’. The day was dull with the sun only making an appearance in the afternoon, but we rose to the challenge by keeping off the overhead lights. Only essential lights were put on in the Chapel for Mass and were switched off afterwards. Interactive whiteboards have replaced ordinary whiteboards in classrooms but we took this in our stride and again printing and photocopying were not done, although we were allowed the use of our computers and phones. Mrs Gill Vymeris, Assistant Bursar, took the challenge to heart and refrained from making her usual number of cups of tea.
Thursday and Friday saw Junior Outside Lessons Day and Senior Outside Lessons Day respectively and Ms Bhatti, IT Department, was looking forward to taking her GCSE Computer Science group outside to the grounds and studying decoding. The codes they were aiming to break are those of Otfrid of Weissenburg (a ninth century monk and author) and Hildegard of Bingen, an eleventh century German Benedictine abbess, writer, composer and philosopher.
This week has seen St Augustine’s Priory make a small step towards Pope Francis’ invitation, one which we hope to increase with practice.
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