Hello to everyone at St Mary’s primary school Gosport and many thanks for raising the wonderful amount of £154 for the Lent appeal. Patrick, our school volunteer went along to present the school with a Thank You certificate and attended the May procession and mass in honour of Our Lady.
He told us “We were invited to present a Thank You certificate, on behalf of CAFOD, for the donation made following the Lenten fundraising. It was a great pleasure to be back in St Mary’s and we were delighted that everyone remembered CAFOD and the importance of “Bob” and his friends to Florence and others in her community.
The children had taken a cut-out of Bob (the fish) and then decorated him or wrote a prayer or a message of support before having him mounted on their huge display which resembled a large pond similar to that of Florence. Everyone got involved and the fabulous sum of £154 was raised.
The Holy Sacrifice of the Mass was celebrated in the open air by Fr Serafino on a beautiful May morning. Following the Mass there was a short break for refreshment before everyone lined up outside in their classes. Everyone was given a fresh flower and then the procession followed the statue of Our Lady and everyone sang hymns to Our Lady as we processed around the playing field and playground. It was a fabulous sight to see the whole school and dozens of parents with younger children strung out around the grounds and the ripple of the angelic voices as the wind carried the sound of “Ave, Ave, Ave Maria: Ave, Ave, Ave Maria” and later, “Ave Maria, gratia plena: Dominus tecum, benedicta tu” reminded us of days of yore when such processions were regular features of “The Month of Mary”. At the end of the procession the children sat in their classes while all the flowers were collected and placed around the statue. A prayer of dedication was offered to Our Lady by all the teachers and children and the celebration concluded with everyone reciting the Hail Mary and the Hail Holy Queen. Father Serafino gave everyone a special Blessing to send us safely back to school and to our daily work. It was a fabulous experience and an honour to have been invited together with many parents, the local elected councilor and School Governors to celebrate this special day in the life of St Mary’s School.”