'Drop Down' Day in December
Last term the RE 'Drop Down' Day focused on the refugee crisis and how the world is responding to it. We looked at this within a Christian context and examined how the Catholic Church is responding to those most in need. We considered our Christian duty to ‘love our neighbour’ and ‘treat others as you would like to be treated’. The pupils enjoyed debating this issue and deciding whose responsibility it is to look after asylum seekers and refugees. We are especially grateful to Paul Gauntlett (our vice-chair of governors) who has set up an organisation called ‘Pendle New Neighbours’. He kindly visited the school and worked with our Year 11 pupils, sharing with them his work with Syrian refugees in the Pendle area. The pupils very much enjoyed hearing about his work and how they provide furniture, clothing and support for 95 refugees and 49 asylum seekers in the Pendle area.
We discovered how Christ himself was a refugee, having to find safety for a time in Egypt to escape persecution in Israel. We learned about how Pope Francis is encouraging all churches to open their doors to refugees and how Bishop John Arnold, the Bishop of Salford, has launched a new initiative, Refugee Dine with Me:
‘It is a very simple but effective way of welcoming people into our parishes who have left their homes and families to seek refuge and safety amongst us. When people sit together to share a meal, especially people from different cultures and life experiences, there is an opportunity to share more than just food. They create what Pope Francis has called a ‘culture of encounter.’
The day was a real success as it gave us the opportunity to inform our pupils about this crisis that the world is facing today and consider our moral and Christian duty to help those most in need.