On Friday 6th May 2016 children, teachers and staff came from schools across the diocese to celebrate the Catholic Care annual Good Shepherd Appeal Service, at Saint Anne’s Cathedral, Leeds, with Bishop Marcus Stock and the Rev Deacon Joseph Cortis.
As always, schools and Catholic Care staff alike look forward to this special annual event.
During the period of Lent staff and children in schools are always busy finding fantastic ways of raising money for Catholic Care. This year we have seen the popularity of the smarties challenge continue, with children swapping smarties for coins in the tubes.
The service commenced with the procession of banners around the Cathedral, with seventy eight schools taking part; and as children and staff processed they sang the opening hymn, ‘Let There Be Love’.
Mrs Carol Hill, Director of Catholic Care, welcomed everyone to the event and shared with the pupil representatives that the money raised would go to support those in need and vulnerable. The Director thanked all present for taking part in the annual event and spoke about the works of Catholic Care in the different service areas.
This year pupils and staff from St Francis and St Cuthbert and the First Martyrs’ Catholic Primary Schools, Bradford presented the theme for the Good Shepherd. The schools were led by Mr Daniel Copley, Executive Head Teacher, and Mrs Anne Rowen, Head of School.
The theme of this years liturgy was ‘Love and Mercy’. Following the opening Prayer from Bishop Marcus, children from St Cuthbert’s performed the ‘trumpet surprise’. This was followed by the Gospel reading, the Parable of the Lost Sheep, which was led and dramatised by children from St Francis Catholic Primary School.
The children from St Francis School had also created a wonderful jigsaw to represent the ‘Year of Mercy’. Children from schools across the diocese were given a piece of the giant jigsaw and asked to place their piece in the puzzle as they came up to present their cheques to the Bishop. Bishop Marcus placed the last two pieces of the jigsaw revealing the completed picture representing the theme of ‘Love and Mercy’
As the children presented their cheques to Bishop Marcus and the Rev Deacon Joseph Cortis, the Bishop was very interested to hear about the different ways the children had raised money. Along with the smarties challenge, Bishop Marcus heard about the many wonderful ways children had been raising money, which included: silly hair day; wear your pyjamas to school day; guess the name of the teddy; talent competitions; and throwing wet sponges at teachers!
After the service, children and teachers joined staff from Catholic Care in Wheeler Hall for refreshments and some lovely opportunities to have photographs taken with Bishop Marcus.
Catholic Care received £43,196.88 from donations on the day.
A huge thank you to all who contributed and attended on the day!