We are so grateful for all the wonderful support given to CAFOD by the entire school community of St Ethelbert Primary in Slough! Thank you all so much! This week, our Education Volunteer, Margaret gave a special assembly to mark the start of Advent. The assembly looked at the true meaning of Christmas and focused on the Nativity story.
Margaret recounts her visit :
“I told the children that we were going to hear some stories from CAFOD’s partners and help build a Nativity scene. As we were doing this, some of the pupils were going to read passages of the Christmas story.
Each of our five helpers introduced each section of the Nativity story and read their passages beautifully. As the story progressed, a new addition was added to our scene and this was watched with full attention as the children waited to see what would unfold.
I talked about the donkey in the Bible story which carried something very special; Mary and Jesus and then told the children that in Ethiopia, donkeys are a valuable asset for families. They are also often the only means of getting sick people to health clinics, many of which are miles away.
The next part of the story moved to the Holy Family having no room at the Inn. However, as Mary was about to have her baby, the family was allowed to stay in the place where the animals were, including the oxen.
I explained that in Ethiopia, cows are very important and shared the story of Afera, a young mother who lives in northern Ethiopia with her six children and her husband, an injured war veteran, who is unable to farm the land. CAFOD partners provided the family with a cow which gave birth to calves a few months later. The cows produce about 8 litres of milk a day which Afera uses to make butter to then sell at the local market. The cow is just one of many other World Gifts which people can buy and give at Christmas time to their friends and family.
The children were excited about the idea of buying a gift that would change someone’s life for the better. The school will soon hold a Mufti day and the money collected will be used to buy World Gifts. Each class will decide what they would like to buy so every pupil in the school will be involved in making a decision. It’s possible that some classes will make a combined decision so that a more expensive gift can be bought. Some children had their minds set on buying a camel !
The assembly finished with a prayer thanking God for the greatest gift of all – His only Son.”
Teacher Laura McAlpine said, “The children really enjoyed the assembly and are looking forward to choosing which World Gifts to purchase. They have a much deeper understanding as to the impact and difference these gifts can make. Margaret was an absolute joy and engaged brilliantly with the children.”
Thank you very much St Ethelbert for all their ongoing support and thank you to Margaret for delivering this lovely assembly.