Catholic Life at our School
At St Thomas of Canterbury, we strive to live and learn through our Gospel values and the teachings of Jesus Christ in all that we think, say and do.
Every day starts with an Act of Worship, we give thanks before lunch and we end the day with a prayer. We believe that Christ is at the centre of all we do and therefore we offer each child a broad, balanced and relevant curriculum of the highest standard to meet their spiritual, emotional, moral, intellectual and physical needs and to prepare them for the responsibilities of adult life.
St Thomas of Canterbury is a school in which each individual grows in the knowledge and love of Christ. In partnership with families, the parish and the whole community, our purpose is to provide a high standard of education, giving the maximum opportunity to realise each child’s potential. Our Catholic faith is experienced and reflected in the way in which all members of our community treat each other. We place great importance on relationships and positive behaviour, encouraging respect, co-operation and consideration.
RE is taught for 10% of the weekly timetable. As a Catholic school our Religious Education follows the Curriculum Directory for Catholic Schools and Colleges in England and Wales. We deliver this using a published scheme of work – ‘The Way, The Truth and The Life’ (Early Years to Year 6). We also teach other major faiths across the school in Multi-Faith Weeks that reflect the diverse world in which we live. Catholic Life is also a focus in our monthly newsletters.
The Christian values at the heart of our Catholic faith incorporate the British Values and we aim in everything we do to further each child's sense of commitment and responsibility to themselves, to others and in the wider world.
Our School's 150th Anniversary Mass with H.E Cardinal Vincent Nichols - June 2023
Founded in 1873, St Thomas of Canterbury School has been serving the community for a century and a half, providing an excellent education to generations of children.
On Wednesday 14th June, we had a School Mass celebrated by His Eminence Cardinal Vincent Nichols. This was a very special honour and a wonderful occasion for our pupils, staff, governors and guests as we gave thanks for the many blessings that our school has received through the years.
In addition to our School Mass, we planned a series of events throughout the summer term, starting with a “History Through the Ages” day. Every pupil in the school went back in time by visiting each classroom hosting a different period in history: the Victorian era, the 1920s, the 1940s and the 1960s. The following day, we invited our school community to an afternoon of celebrations which included Maypole dancing and singing. We invited Councillor Jones to help us plant a commemorative oak tree and bury a time capsule.
Celebrating our First Holy Communicants ~ May/June 2023
Easter - April 2023
Easter is the celebration of Christ's resurrection from the dead. It is celebrated on Sunday, and marks the end of Holy Week, the end of Lent, the last day of the Easter Triduum (Holy Thursday, Good Friday and Easter Sunday), and is the beginning of the Easter season of the liturgical year.
As we know from the Gospels, Jesus Christ rose from the dead on the third day following his crucifixion. His resurrection marks the triumph of good over evil, sin and death. It is the singular event which proves that those who trust in God and accept Christ will be raised from the dead.
During this time, we come together as a school community to reflect on the death of Jesus and rejoice in His resurrection.
Lent - Celebrating Ash Wednesday Mass with Bishop Paul McAleenan ~ February 2023
Lent is a 40 day season of prayer, fasting, and almsgiving that begins on Ash Wednesday and ends at sundown on Holy Thursday. It is a period of preparation to celebrate the Lord's Resurrection at Easter. During Lent, we seek the Lord in prayer; we serve by giving to charities; and we practice self-control through fasting. We are called not only to abstain from luxuries during Lent, but to a true inner conversion of heart as we seek to follow Christ's will more faithfully.
Advent - and Christmas ~ November/December 2022
We prepare for the coming of Christ with our Advent wreath and candles. There are 3 purple candles and 1 pink candle on the wreath, and each candle has its own significance and meaning.
Week 1: Purple Advent Candle, Hope
The first candle lit on the first week of Advent is a purple candle, which represents hope - the waiting and longing for the coming of Christ.
Week 2: Purple Advent Candle, Faith
The second candle to be lit is also a purple candle. This candle symbolises faith and the journey of Joseph and Mary to Bethlehem. It calls us out to prepare the way of the Lord.
Week 3: Pink Advent Candle, Joy
The next and third candle to be lit is the pink candle, which represents Joy. This candle reminds us that Jesus' coming is near as we reach the middle point of Advent.
Pink Advent Candle
In the advent wreath, the color pink represents joy. This particular candle is lit with significant timing that signals that something great is coming soon.
Week 4: Purple Advent Candle, Peace
On the fourth and final Sunday of Advent, the last candle is lit, which is purple. This candle represents peace and reminds us of the importance of Peace as the true saviour of the world is coming.
Every year, Early Years and Key Stage 1 treat us to their Nativity presentation. Key Stage 2 provide us with a wonderful rendition of Christmas carols both old and new.
Remembrance Day - November 2022
During our Shared Act of Worship, we remember all those who sacrificed their lives for peace during times of war. We have dedicated a Book of Remembrance for our school community.
We pray for those they have left behind and for those injured or traumatised by the devastation of war. We pray for peace amongst our nations.