Children, Youth and Families Blog: Annual Leaver’s Services at Gloucester Cathedral.

Published: Thursday June 20, 2024

ConnectLisa-Jayne, our Stewardship and Giving Advisor, shares her first experience of attending the annual Leaver’s Services at Gloucester Cathedral.

What an unexpected joy it was to join colleagues from the Education Department and the Connect, Children & Youth Ministry Team last week for the annual Leaver’s Services in Gloucester Cathedral.

As someone who doesn’t have children, so has very little reason to engage with anything to do with schools and education, you might have thought I would be the last person to be interested in seeing how children’s education, and particularly the faith aspects of education come together in worship, but not at all.

Although I don’t want to sound like an ‘in-my-day’ sort, this was not something that I had experienced and, genuinely, we didn’t have that sort of thing ‘in my day’! So, I was curious, to see what happened and gain a little insight into the work that goes on in church schools across the diocese.

The school uniforms and special ‘Leavers ‘24’ hoodies made the cathedral a riot of colour as the children and teachers entered to some upbeat worship music and the buzz of excitement of what was to come. Of course, there were no old hymns played on the organ, the worship and music were lively, led by the creative brilliance of iSing Pop making action songs and dancing in the nave perfectly normal.

The banner bearers dutifully carried their school banners up the aisle… what a special moment to carry your school’s banner in the service. I remember always feeling a certain amount of joy and honour when carrying the flag for parade service, I imagine this creates a similar feeling.

The service was led by Senior Youth Connector, Barrie Voyce and Archdeacon Phil Andrew, with some of the young people giving readings and leading prayers. This was such a lovely way to acknowledge a milestone moment for those transitioning to a new school in the autumn, a lovely way to thank the teachers and supporting staff in our schools, and to continue to ensure God is the focus of all we do.

Oh, and my highlight of the service? The youngsters on the end of the aisle trying to high-five the Archdeacon as he walked down the aisle at the end of the service, and being the cool chap that he is, Phil obliged and high-fived them back!

I am looking forward to next year, very much.

The word Leadership spelt out, with Committed to Transformation written underneath.

Leave a Reply

Most popular articles today: