Worship Themes / Big Ideas
Worship underpins all that we do at St Wilfrid’s. Each year we tackle an over-arching theme that directs our form worship, collective worship as well as the faith elements of the ‘Wilfridian’ and ‘Wilfridian Next Level’ Award.

This year's worship theme is 'Identity'.
This year, students have been challenged to SERVE. Based on the example of Jesus, we read in Matthew 20:28,  “Whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be your slave— just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”

In the parable of the Good Samaritan, we see a person who SHARES their possessions, EMPOWERS another, RESPONDS to a need, VALUES someone else, out of a heart of compassion (EMPATHY). This is our challenge, to SERVE like Jesus.

St Wilfrid’s holds worship right at the heart of the Academy and expresses its Christian Distinctiveness not only in the way we live out our lives together but in our collective worship life too. Whilst we recognise each member of the Academy has a different background and story, we seek to create an atmosphere where the God-given potential is drawn out of all, in order for them to thrive wherever life takes them.
Collective Worship
As part of our collective worship, we celebrate together in Form groups, Year groups, as Houses and as a collective for Cathedral services. We present a range of worship styles and experiences for students to discover or develop their faith journey. We invite all students to consider their own spiritual life and ask questions of others.

One of the unique opportunities St Wilfrid's has, is celebrating together at Blackburn Cathedral. Services take place to celebrate and remember St Wilfrid’s Day, Ash Wednesday, Holy Week and Ascension Day. Students take part in a formal Eucharistic service, led by the Cathedral clergy, organist, school choir and music ensemble.

Year group assemblies are led by the Worship team, including the Worship Coordinator, Senior leaders, and staff. These follow the worship theme. Forms also lead Worship assemblies, where they look deeper into the vision statement and values of the Academy, offering their own faith-filled perspective.

Form groups are invited termly to the Chapel, our purpose-built reflective worship space in the heart of the Academy, to reflect on their own faith journey and consider how it affects their lives, both now and in the future. Themes covered include ‘Soul Keeping’, ‘Mental Strength’ and ‘Living God’s Way’.
Form Worship
Form tutors are an integral part of the faith experience at St Wilfrid’s. They build close relationships with their group, helping them both academically as well as emotionally during their time at St Wilfrid’s. Form worship often involves purpose-made video resources, discussion points and individual reflections. Students are then reminded of their responses, as we build on previous sessions.

Each form presents a theme from our vision statement or values to their year group in assembly. The time and effort spent in preparation for these is evident and students often comment how much they have grown in confidence through taking part in public speaking in front of larger groups.
“I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.”
John 10:10
Worship Team
St Wilfrid’s benefits from a large number of key partnerships within the local church community. The Academy represents a cross-section of faith traditions and we celebrate these in our worship experiences.
Church Partnerships
Our Cathedral connections continue to develop, both in our whole-school celebrations that take place there as well as in special partnership opportunities with the education team.

St Wilfrid's is situated in the parish of St Luke's and St Aiden's, located within close walking distance to the church. This means that links are strong and continue to grow from strength to strength. The team at St Luke's, led by Rev Jason and Rachel Gardner, supports the Worship in school, offers a range of lunch-club opportunities and offers out of school support. There are also opportunities for students to grow in their faith, through group discussions at the 'Youth Alpha’ courses.

Other churches within the local area too offer significant support to us as we deliver faith opportunities to students. Pastor Stephen Norcross from Community Church Blackburn and the team from Brave Church Oswaldtwistle, offer ongoing prayer and practical support throughout the school year. Saint Wilfrid’s is blessed to have a right variety of faith experiences and traditions join together, as students from the whole range of backgrounds create our colourful and rich community of faith.  

We are also supported well by the Blackburn Diocese board of education, in which partnerships and collaboration make inter-connection strong within the secondary schools. Worship Coordinators and Chaplains from partner schools across Lancashire share ideas, resources, fellowship and offer prayer support regularly. Youth leaders too are keen to build a strong network of support, friendship and prayer.
Other Partnerships
PAIS is an international organisation that provides gap year volunteers with the opportunity to serve in churches and schools. We continue to benefit from their excellent generosity in our faith clubs at St Wilfrid’s. These have included assemblies, lunch clubs and lesson support. The PAIS team bring their unique gifts, talents and experiences and use these to enrich our students whenever they are given opportunity. PAIS have been a regular support in school and in praying for our school community. This has involved mentoring, leading talk-writing workshops and engaging students in the 'Rise Up' talent show, which was won by a member of the St Wilfrid's community in 2022.
Student Leadership
Student leadership within the worship context of school give students the opportunity to put their faith into action. This is evident throughout the pastoral system, where students are encouraged to serve as Form Reps, Anti-bullying Ambassadors and House Captains. Within the Worship context, we are building a core team of students in each year, representing each form, to help plan, deliver and evaluate worship experiences in school. Within Year 8, our students take an active lead in communicating the news from our sponsor children, as well as writing letters. Students in older year groups take an active role in leading lunch groups and sharing thoughts from the Bible and their personal experiences.
Faith Journeys and Testimonies
St Wilfrid’s offers opportunities for students, no matter where they are on their faith journey, to question and reflect on their own understanding of God. All students are encouraged to think carefully how the words of Jesus and the teachings found in the Bible can apply to them in their lives.

‘Living life to the full’ is evident in the range of extra-curricular activities that we offer for students who are keen to journey further in their faith. These vary each year, based on the vision and experiences of the team that we have to work with from PAIS and St Luke’s. All activities are designed to create a community that supports each other to fulfil the call of Jesus, to “Love God, and love others.”
Faith Clubs
Let us praise!
Led by the wonderful worship team from St Luke’s, students meet each week to learn more about praise and worship. They play games, explore the meaning of song and practice, ready to lead others in worship. Currently the band includes piano, guitar, kahon and horn.

Chapel Eucharist
Open to all members of the school community, we meet in the chapel to celebrate with Rev Jason Gardner. Students play an active role in this service, through leading worship, prayers and readings. This is a reflective time for students and staff to gather together.

PAIS Discipleship
This year, the PAIS team have had the vision to support, nurture and train a group of students to be confident to share their faith with others.  They have taught students how to study the Bible according to the Haverim tradition and have coached them on how to present a thought or talk to others.

St Luke’s / PAIS lunch club
Due to the large number of students attending, both PAIS and St Luke’s work together to build a community of students each week who learn to play together. They always include a thought around their own personal faith journeys and encourage students to share about their own beliefs.

Youth Alpha
During the academic year, St Luke’s have led after-school clubs, where students can explore the Christian faith more deeply and engage in discussions around their questions.  
Faith in Action
Students across the academy are encouraged to put their faith into action, serve their families and communities and become courageous advocates. We frequently provide opportunities to raise money for Compassion, our five sponsored children, their families and their projects. Students continue to develop their understanding of the conditions in which families in Rwanda live. This helps us all understand how we are called to ‘Share’ what we have and ‘Respond’ to needs that arise in our world.
The Wilfridian Award - Faith element
As part of the Wilfridian Award in Year 7, students are encouraged to play their part. This is not restricted to a certain act or action but can be thought of imaginatively and creatively. For many students, sharing their 'Me Box' to their form allows them an opportunity to share part of their story and their faith. For others, they choose to write prayers or lead prayers in form or lesson. Other students take a prominent role in their form assembly to demonstrate their contribution to the faith aspect of the award.
The Wilfridian Next Level - SERVE
Jesus taught his followers to be doers and not just hearers of the word. This is the foundation of the SERVE strand of the Wilfridian Next Level award. We read in the story of the Good Samaritan, that the example of showing kindness was given when the person showed kindness to a stranger. We see in the story that the person Shared, Empowered, Responded, Volunteered and Empathised with the person in need. We ask students in Year 8 to plan, execute, review and record the opportunities they have taken this year to SERVE those around them. We encourage them to raise money for the work of Compassion through SERVING others. We celebrate at the end of the year, the impact our gifts and our service have on our children, families and projects in Rwanda.
Student Voice
(Coming Soon)
St Wilfrid
When we look into the life of St Wilfrid, we see a saint who lived to establish the church in the north of England against many oppositions. His determination and strong confidence in his beliefs led to him facing lots of opposition from all sides. But he showed resilience and character and stood strong for what he felt was right.

James, the writer in the New Testament offers a gift money cannot buy. In James 1:4 it says, “…so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.”

What an offer! Who wouldn’t want some of that maturity, completeness and a life without lack? James precedes this offer with what it takes to achieve such rewards by saying,“Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.”

St Wilfrid faced many trials and struggles as he sought to follow God’s will for his life. Are you facing a trial at the moment? Whatever you are up against, my prayer is that you will see the fruit of your determination as you grow perseverance that leads to completion. If it is persecution from others because of your determination to do what is right, then take heart, rejoice and be glad, because God has reserved a reward for you.
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