b'THE ELLESMERIAN 20Chapel Notes Sadly we were unable to fill the chapel to bursting, as we usually do for carol services, due to rising COVID numbers in Shropshire during December. We opted, instead, for two internal services, both This years Chapel report will be a term by term overview ofrecorded and shared so that others could join us in heart and sermon themes. It will be more concise than most years because,mind and go even unto Bethlehem and see this thing which has after COVID, the usual round of chapel activities is being built backcome to pass. The Chapel and Chamber Choirs provided music for gradually. Many familiar landmarks in the schools yearly liturgicalthe firstcandlelit service, attended by members of staff and the journey were absent and though there was joy in being able toSixth Form. The Lower School Service took place during the day. gather together more regularly, the lack of House Chapel services and House Carol Services, the Remembrance Requiem, and otherHaving listened to stories about the Angel Gabriel and the heavenly waypoints, meant that there was less confidence at our gatheringshost over Christmas we returned to school asking: Is a Christian and a newly (re-)forming familiarity with our forms of worship.supposed to be like an angel? I was trying to get at the common idea that people who call themselves Christians are often just trying to be We began the year by reflecting on being human, in a series calledgoody two-shoes. Hence, we looked at ways of describing the Human Blueprint. Much as we look to the schematics of a machineChristian life which countermand common misunderstandings. For to see how it is supposed to function, and for what purpose it wasinstance, we looked at Life as Worship not point scoring, we looked constructed, we looked to the insights of biblical authors to exploreat being committed to transformation rather than just self-the nature of humanity. We discovered that humans are: made to feelrecrimination, and the freeing idea that life is not an attempt to forge safe, made to be heard, made to be generous, made to be sustainedour own identity, purpose, or self-worth but rather the response to a by hope, made to listen, and made to be grateful.call, summons, or commission.After half term we moved on to look at spirituality. Over the last tenThe collapse of familiar patterns during the pandemic meant that we years or so there has been a steady increase in interest aroundalso needed to turn our attention to the meaning and purpose of spirituality and concurrent commodification of the same. In all areasthe services and rituals that we share in chapel. Consequently, the of life at the College we aim to prepare students to be discerning.next half-terms worth of services was given over to an examination Much as we teach them to be on their guard when consumingof the various parts of the Eucharist, what they are, what they mean, media we also need to help them to be critical in their approach toand how they encode wisdom for our daily lives. Our school was spirituality. Therefore, this half term we looked at what you might callfounded by a priest who was convinced that the Eucharist should be the basics of a healthy spirituality: staying awake, owning up toat the heart of every educational community that he established. We personal failures, staying humble, responding to opportunities,saw how the Eucharist is bread for the journey and that spoke to us building courage, and being prepared to learn from an elder. Myof Gods care for us and the importance of self-care. We saw how contention was that without these un-glamorous factors anythe Eucharist is a way to share Jesus life and that led us to examine spirituality is probably self-involved, self-serving, and groundless.the ways that we share life with others, and reflect on being intentional about how we do that.'