Snippets of Faith

Giving to Brushstrokes for Lent


Spiritual Council with donated food items for Brushstrokes.

30 March 2017

As well as raising money for the Good Shepherd Appeal, the children at St. Mark’s also wanted to give to others less fortunate by donating food items. The food items will help refugees and those less fortunate in the wider community.

On Thursday 30th March, Teresa Clements from Brushstrokes joined the children for Mass and afterwards kindly thanked them for their donation.

Staff Prepare Meals for Local Homeless Charity


Staff helping with meals for the homeless.

28 March 2017

During Lent we as a school have tried to reach out with acts of compassion towards others, near and far, especially the less fortunate; and show love, not just by our actions but by our forgiving words.

The children at St. Mark's have showed acts of compassion and love to neighbours within our local community by visiting elderly residents, within our parish community by serving tea and coffee to our parishioners and donating to the 'Brushstrokes' charity who aid the vulnerable and homeless in our wider community, across the entire city and further afield.

Our staff have also been compassionate and loving by supporting a local homeless charity; 'Saint Vincent de Paul Society' by preparing and serving 150 meals to those people who are facing daily challenges in everyday life.

The staff also donated money to sustain aspects of this homeless charity for the future and facilitated the acquisition of a passport and the safe passage of a young polish gentleman named Szymon, to return to his homeland so he could be reunited with his family from whom he had become separated.

Vocations visit from Father Chris Yule


Father Chris speaks to the children.

8 March 2017

On Wednesday 8th March, Fr. Chris Yule, who is a past pupil of St. Mark’s visited the school to speak to all the children about their Vocation.

Every class had the opportunity to ask Fr. Chris questions about his calling to the priesthood and the children shared their own thoughts about their vocation.

All the children at St. Mark’s School enjoyed spending time with Fr. Chris and learning more about Vocations.

Lent Fundraising


Learning about the Good Shepherd Appeal.

8 March 2017

On Wednesday 8th March, Lucy Davis from the Good Shepherd appeal visited St. Mark’s to explain to the children how their support can help others less fortunate than themselves.

Last year, we raised an amazing £1087.21 so we are hoping to do just as well this year. The money we raise enables Father Hudson’s Care to continue its work supporting children, adults and families across the Archdiocese of Birmingham.

Every child has been given a Good Shepherd box to take home during Lent to fill with contributions from family members and coins that might ordinarily have been spent on sweets and treats. This is a reminder for us that Lent is a time of giving to others and a time whereby we make some sacrifices.

Year 3 Pancakes for Shrove Tuesday


Year 3 making pancakes.

28 February 2017

On Tuesday 28th February, Year 3 celebrated Shrove Tuesday by eating some delicious pancakes!

Shrove Tuesday is the day before Ash Wednesday which is the first day of Lent. It's a day of penitence, to clean the soul, and a day of celebration as the last chance to feast before Lent begins.

Class Prayer Tables During Lent


One of our class Prayer Tables.

28 February 2017

During Lent, we remember the 40 days Jesus spent in the desert.

Prayer tables are arranged with the colour purple because it symbolizes repentance, and we recognise that Lent is a time to repent for our wrongdoings.

Our class prayer tables also contain a dish with sand in during Lent as this reminds us that Jesus was in the desert during this time.

Spiritual Council Learning Walk


Two schools coming together.

30 January 2017

In January, St. Mark’s Spiritual Council carried out a learning walk at St. John Bosco Catholic Primary School in West Bromwich.

The following week, the Spiritual Council children from St. John Bosco then visited St. Mark’s to carry out a learning walk.

Both visits were extremely useful and the children gave some great ideas on how the Catholic Life of each school could be improved.

Missionaries of Charity


The Sisters speak to the children.

15 November 2016

On Tuesday 15th November, two Sisters from the Missionaries of Charity situated in Kingstanding came to visit the children at St. Mark's.

The Missionaries of Charity work hard to serve the poorest of the poor in the community and this year marked a special year for them because their founder; Mother Teresa was canonized on 4th September 2016 by Pope Francis.

During their visit, the Sisters spoke to each class about Saint Teresa, the work the Missionaries of Charity do and they answered many questions from the children about their vocation, service and mercy. It was a very humbling afternoon and the children were left feeling very inspired to continue some of the great work they have shown during the Year of Mercy.

Harvest Thanksgiving Mass


Teresa from Brushstrokes and St. Mark's Spiritual Council with Mrs. O'Shea.

13 October 2016

On Thursday 13th October, Year 3 led the whole school in a Thanksgiving Harvest Mass which was well attended by many members of St. Mark's School Community.

Well done to Year 3 and to all the children at St. Mark's who brought in tinned and packaged food.

All the food collected was donated to the Brushstrokes Community Project, which supports people in our community to rebuild their lives; settle in to new homes and find employment or education opportunities.

The Children's Pilgrimage


Year 6's pilgrimage to St Chad's Cathedral.

23 September 2016

On Friday 23rd September, Year 6 attended the 'The Children's Pilgrimage' at St. Chad's Cathedral along with nine other schools in the Archdiocese of Birmingham.

On arrival, the children walked through the Door of Mercy and then had some reflection time to complete a pilgrimage shell. It was a spiritual time to think about the Year of Mercy inside the Mother Church of the Archdiocese of Birmingham.

The children had time to explore and encounter fellow pilgrims on the journey and to feel inspired about Christian life today. Dan Callow and Emily Clark from Onelife Music led the liturgy and music for the Mass. All the children had an enjoyable time singing along and using sign language to deliver God's message.

Fr. Jonathan Vesey celebrated Mass and it was wonderful to see children from all the schools that attended take part. It was a glorious pilgrimage and all the children were glad to have taken part in such a special occasion.

Saint Mark's Feast Day


Spiritual Council lead the liturgy.

25 April 2016

On Monday 25th April, on the feast day of St. Mark, the Spiritual Council led the whole school in a special liturgy.

St. Mark was graced with many talents, but one in particular was his gift for writing. Through his Gospel, we are revealed many of the small details of the life of Jesus – his words and actions – that the other Gospel writers did not record.

Well done to all the members of the Spiritual Council for leading such a special liturgy!

Spiritual Council Assembly on the Stations of the Cross


Stations of the Cross Assembly.

24 February 2016

On Wednesday 24th February, the Spiritual Council led an assembly on the Stations of the Cross.

They reverently led the school in some reflection of each image of each station of the cross.

Good Shepherd Appeal


Good Shepherd assembly.

23 February 2016

On Tuesday 23rd February, a visitor from Father Hudson's Care visited St. Mark's School to explain to the children how they can participate in almsgiving during Lent by collecting money in the Good Shepherd Appeal money boxes.

Year of Mercy


The Spiritual Council led the school assembly.

8 December 2015

On Tuesday 8th December, on the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of Our Lady, the Spiritual Council alongside Mrs. O'Shea and Mrs. Linley, led the school with a Year of Mercy assembly.

The Spiritual Council explained to the whole school that Pope Francis wants us all to think about the mercy of God for this year and to consider our relationship with God Our Father through prayer and the way we live our lives.

He is giving us a whole year to do this!

Pope Francis wants us to reflect and pray upon some important messages and the first thing we need to remember is how much God loves us.

God loves each and every one of us and he wants us all to believe in him and follow him.

The Spiritual Council gave many great examples of how God and Jesus showed mercy and they explained how we can learn from their examples and show mercy to others.

The special assembly ended with the whole school singing the Magnificat and saying the Year of Mercy prayer together.

As the Year of Mercy progresses, there will be more special events and activities taking place.

Deacon Chris Visits Year 6


Deacon Chris speaking to Year 6.

18 November 2015

On Wednesday 18th November 2015, Year 6 were visited by a former St. Mark's pupil, Deacon Chris, who spoke with great enthusiasm to the children about vocations, building upon their recent Religious Education lessons about the followers of Christ (Unit 6B).

The children all agreed that Deacon Chris had encouraged and inspired them to explore their calling from God in greater depth.

They were especially intrigued to hear that Deacon Chris was a keen Aston Villa supporter!

Remembrance Day Assembly


Our Remembrance Day assembly.

11 November 2015

On Thursday 11th November, Mrs Dykes and the school spiritual council led a whole school Remembrance Assembly.

The assembly honoured the heroic efforts, achievements and sacrifices made by men and women in past wars. We honoured these with a two minutes silence.

Harvest Celebration


Our Spiritual Council with Louise from SIFA Fireside and some of the many food items donated.

15 October 2015

We would like to thank members of our school community, Parish, parents and grandparents for joining together with us at Mass for our Harvest celebration on Thursday 15th October 2015.

Many thanks to all those who donated food parcels. All the donated items of food have been sent to SIFA Fireside which is a dynamic Birmingham based charity improving health and inclusion for homeless people.

The receivers of these gifts will be overwhelmed with your kindness and generosity.

Sacrament of Confirmation


Bishop McGough and the Confirmandi.

27 January 2015

On the evening of Tuesday 27th January 2015, the Saint Mark's school community joined together as one at Holy Name Church to witness the Year 5 and Year 6 Confirmandi become full members of the Church through the Sacrament of Confirmation.

After many months of preparation, all of the children received the sacrament with thought and reverence and were a credit to both their families and Saint Mark's School.

During the ceremony, Bishop McGough called down the Holy Spirit to be with the children and to guide them on their journeys of faith. We pray that their commitment to the Church will continue to grow, so that they may be witnesses of God's eternal love throughout the world.

A Visit from Bishop McGough


Bishop McGough meets the children.

26 January 2015

On Monday 26th January 2015, the Year 5 and Year 6 Confirmandi were extremely excited to welcome a very special visitor, Bishop David McGough, to Saint Mark's.

The visit of Bishop McGough marked their final day of preparation for receiving the Sacrament of Confirmation.

Following an informal discussion covering all aspects of their faith, Bishop McGough commented on how impressed he was with the children's knowledge and understanding of what it takes to be a committed follower of Christ and to become a full member of the Church.