A big thank you to everyone at St Saviour’s Catholic Primary in Freshwater on the Isle of Wight for all their fab support for CAFOD. The school even has their own special CAFOD Leaders! Here they are sporting their special badges!
Earlier this month, Education Volunteer, Liz Burden visited the school to explain why we’re asking young people to ‘Brighten Up’ this Harvest and how everyone can help bring about a brighter and more peaceful world.
Liz started the assembly by promising to share a little about the lives of two children – one here in the UK and one in El Salvador in Latin America. Both these children – Luke and Diego – have had their lives ‘brightened up’ by living in peace with people.
But before Liz talked about Luke and Diego, she explored a little more about what peace really means, asking the children what they do to keep the peace. As the children knew, to have peace we all have to get on, be kind to one another and share. If we don’t do this and we fall out and argue with each other, then there is conflict.
Liz then asked the children to imagine what ingredients they might use in a ‘Peace Pie’. Two children came to the front and had to pull out an ‘ingredient’ from a mixing bowl. The ‘right ingredients’ ranged from ‘being kind’ and ‘forgiving someone’.
However some ingredients such as ‘falling out’ and ‘fighting’ were quickly discarded as the children felt they would create a ‘Conflict Cake’ instead! Liz then asked the children if they’d ever fallen out with anyone. Most of us have! But what’s important, as she said, is that we make up and we forgive the person.
As Liz said, those of us who have received the sacrament of reconciliation know how it feels when we admit we have done something wrong and know that God has forgiven us. Jesus taught us to be peacemakers. He said ‘Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God’. [Matthew 5:6] We try to follow the good example that our parents and our teachers give us and as children of God we look to Jesus to show us how to live our lives.
Liz then said that this is what Luke (from the UK) had done. He fell out with his friends one break time but made it up with them afterwards. He was a peacemaker.
CAFOD works with our partners to try to be peacemakers too. Liz showed the children a picture of Diego, a young boy in El Salvador in Central America. Diego lives in a part of San Salvador, the capital of El Salvador, that can be very violent. There are lots of gangs in the area. CAFOD is working on a peace-building project to help the community and children like Diego to live together in peace. Diego’s school runs lots of different sport, music and dance activities for children to join in and he plays the drums in a peace band. When he is doing so he feels safe.
Take a look below at a short film of Diego and his experiences of living in San Salvador.
Liz then explained that this Harvest, CAFOD was asking young people everywhere to ‘Brighten Up’ this Harvest to help CAFOD build a brighter world and help other communities like Diego’s, find more peaceful ways of living together. As Liz said, Luke, Diego and CAFOD are all peacemakers. Jesus was also a peacemaker. They all show us, that in order to be peaceful, we have to act. Click on our special film about this below.
Liz also gave special classroom sessions on Children’s Rights during her visit. Firstly the children thought about what ‘rights’ meant. They then looked at five children’s stories and chose a particular right they believed the story best illustrated, thinking very carefully whilst doing so about the right to play, to live in safety, the right to education and how CAFOD partners are working to ensure all children have the same rights. The children have now gone on to create their own special posters.
Thank you so much to all the teachers, parents and children at St Saviour’s primary for all your brilliant support for CAFOD. We really appreciate all you do. Thank you too to Liz of course for carrying out this fab visit.
Find out more about our ‘Brighten Up’ for Harvest appeal.