June is traditionally the month that we dedicate to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, in veneration and in gratitude of His redeeming love for us all. As a leader in a Sacred Heart school, a very important part of my role is to bring this love to life, to the forefront of the minds and the hearts of everyone in our community.
In school assembly, I spend time looking at different images of the Sacred Heart of Jesus with students: the flaming heart, the pierced heart, the heart surrounded by thorns, and we talk through the significance of each and what this might mean today to 21st-century teenagers. In my explanation, I always like to link these images with that of our International Network and our own school logo.
Looking at both these ‘open hearts’ it becomes much easier to describe to students the love that Jesus has for us. The heart being open means all are welcome, that we are one community, and we are all enveloped by the deep love of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Feeling that sense of belonging is very important in a school community like ours: to feel comfortable, at home and loved is vital for both staff and students so that we feel nurtured, we flourish and we succeed.
To help embed this sense of belonging and promote that we are one community, held in the love of the Heart of Jesus, we created this mosaic. It includes the fingerprint of every single student and member of staff in our school, bringing us together visually and colourfully in one place.
It seems very fitting that, in the 180th year of the RSCJ in this country, we pause to reflect on the work of this dedicated group of Sisters who have devoted their lives to making known the love of the Heart of God. We are blessed here in Fenham, as we have our Sisters very nearby and we benefit greatly from their closeness. They support us in so many ways, attending School Mass, coming along to our concerts and shows, providing spiritual guidance and a listening ear, sitting in our meetings, promoting wellbeing and sharing Capacitar, offering guidance and, most important of all, we are comforted that they are praying for us as a school community.
The month of June in secondary schools means public examinations, where Year 11 and Year 13 students are studying hard and navigating their way through what can be an anxious time. We pray for all students who are sitting exams and hope they are filled with courage and confidence.
‘Sacred Heart of Jesus, we place all our trust in you’
Sacred Heart Catholic High School
Newcastle upon Tyne