Andy Bathgate (SU Scotland CEO) and Elizabeth McDowall (Prayer Coordinator) recently visited the weekly prayer service held before school at St Bartholomew's Primary, Coatbridge. The prayer service is organised and led by a group of pupils under the leadership of teacher Mrs Catherine O'Neill and is open to parents, staff and pupils. There was standing room only! Here Andrew, a P7 pupil, shares why he thinks prayer is so important:
"Prayer is a very important part of our life here at St Bartholomew's Primary. It gives us a sense of belonging and makes us feel connected to the whole church throughout the world. Praying together in class, at our weekly prayer service or at Mass helps to reinforce our identity as Catholic Christians. When we pray for each other in school, we are showing that we love and care for each other and that we are concerned about what is happening in the lives of other people. Quiet prayer time in our school is particularly important as this is when we are most open to God's word. We pray as a class in the morning, before and after lunch and before we go home at 3 o'clock... This reminds us to be thankful for God's gifts to us on a daily basis. Prayer has always been important in St. Bartholomew's and always will be."
The front row of the photo shows Mrs Claire O'Neill (Class Teacher), Catherine (P6), Mairead (P5) and Andrew (P7), with Headteacher Graeme Young (back, middle), Elizabeth and Andy.