Posted by Carla on 14.05.2012
Carla Taylor and Lena Kretschmer write; "We recently ran our second two-day Prayer Space at Gable Hall (secondary) School. After the first one, back in November 2011, we launched an After-School Café, in which we have a few prayer activities. It's been going really well, and we were really excited about how this would support the Prayer Space.
We had an early set up for the Prayer Space, but the school was buzzing with life, even that early in the morning! Straight away the head of R.E was there to greet us, making sure we had everything we needed, not long after one of the pastoral staff who we work with at Café dropped by to wish us the best for the day and the student who came to set up the project for us was one of the regulars from the café. We really felt welcomed.
We did some lessons over the two days with the year groups who come to Café, so it was great to see some familiar faces and well as meeting new students.
The Sorry and Forgiveness Zone was really popular, with a queue outside the gazebo during most of the lessons. One of the students said “I feel like a giant weight has been lifted off my shoulders and I know that I should be grateful for everything.”
During a feedback session, one of the girls said that the Prayer Space had helped her realise how thankful she was for so many things in her life, and that she wanted to be more grateful, and have a positive attitude towards life and people. Another student asked if we could start a club where they could think more about what prayer is.
Our After-School Café could be such a place. Besides giving away toast and squash and selling snacks, and as well as Café being a space for the pupils to hang out and play cards, we also have various prayer activities. The Prayer Spaces are very much a part of Café. And Café is a part of the Prayer Spaces. Each week we set up a gazebo and create a space where the students can reflect and pray, and each week the young people do just that. A couple of weeks ago a student asked me "where are the rest of the zones?" She said that she really enjoys the Prayer Space days.
Here is some other feedback from the students following our latest Prayer Space:
"This made me feel relaxed and free. I will write sorry notes and shred them more often"
"It made me feel that I think I got to change my life around"
"I enjoyed it as it felt like I connected to God!"
"Today I’ve reflected on things and they have made me feel better about life and God"
"I have learnt to think about my actions and who life I’m impacting on I really liked the sorry section. It gave me a chance to apologise for what I have done, and shred it."
"That this was very helpful, but prefer longer. The forgiveness part was the best"
"I feel more peaceful and it has made me think about prayers and what they truly are."
"Prayer is good for you."
Indeed it is.