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Re: Should Christ’s Hospital Stop Being a Faith School?

Posted: Thu Apr 23, 2009 5:16 pm
by minihobo89
I don't know where this is all coming from but Chapel is still compulsory, unless it changed in the last week!?!?

Re: Should Christ’s Hospital Stop Being a Faith School?

Posted: Thu Apr 23, 2009 5:43 pm
by kerrensimmonds
http://www.christs-hospital.org.uk/27-school-chapel.php

How often is 'Full School Chapel'? As far as I can see from the website, that's the only time it is compulsory...but maybe I am reading it wrong?

Compare that with our day, when it was once every day and three times on Sunday (once you were confirmed...).

Re: Should Christ’s Hospital Stop Being a Faith School?

Posted: Thu Apr 23, 2009 6:09 pm
by Barnes Mum
There is either a full school chapel or choice chapel (compulsory to choose one of the two choices) every Sunday and junior chapel (also compulsory) on a Wednesday or senior chapel (compulsory) on a Tuesday. So compulsory chapel for all twice a week.

Re: Should Christ’s Hospital Stop Being a Faith School?

Posted: Thu Apr 23, 2009 9:20 pm
by NEILL THE NOTORIOUS
I suppose Chapel was compulsory, in my day, but it never crossed my mind.
It was part of School Life.---- I sang in the Choir, from Treble to Alto to Bass, and enjoyed it. (I still sing -- guess which !)
As part of another Topic ---When I was being Confirmed -- I had to wash my hair TWICE --- Matron Watts-- so that the Bish of Chich didn't get dirty fingers !

Re: Should Christ’s Hospital Stop Being a Faith School?

Posted: Thu Apr 23, 2009 10:29 pm
by 99yorkpj
I'm baaaack!! :lol:

Chapel was deffo compulsory when I was there three years ago. I don't necessarily know whether its a good thing or not. It definitely did nothing to strengthen my faith. In fact I think it made it worse. And it's had a sure negative effect on many students - once they leave CH they choose never to set foot in a church again.
So I donno... for traditions sake maybe - but all in all, I never thought much of it. It did bring students together tho!

Re: Should Christ’s Hospital Stop Being a Faith School?

Posted: Thu Apr 23, 2009 10:46 pm
by kerrensimmonds
Welcome back Philippa!
I'm sure that we've all been where you are. I was forced into a very upright Church in London when I left school, by contacts enforced by my parents. It didn't take me long to say 'stuff that' and to turn away and to indulge in all sorts of unspeakable things which meant that in all conscience I could not go to Church at all. However, now, speaking from a position of aeons after school, I'd say that if at some later point in your life something happens to make you think about turning back to the Church (as it did to me) you will find that the grounding you got at school will have stood you in good stead. In the meantime, be true to yourself!

Re: Should Christ’s Hospital Stop Being a Faith School?

Posted: Fri Apr 24, 2009 9:16 am
by michael scuffil
Fjgrogan wrote:How do you justify the claim that Jesus was rabidly anti-family?

Look at Matthew chapters 10, 12 and 19.


Same approach as modern "cults".

Re: Should Christ’s Hospital Stop Being a Faith School?

Posted: Fri Apr 24, 2009 10:51 am
by Angela Woodford
I don't see that CH could "stop" being a faith school without abandoning too many of its traditions.

I, speaking as a voice of a long ago Hertford Old Girl, feel that chapel gives structure and focus to the school day. It gets everybody together. One can be mentally there, or not. In a packed day, there is the opportunity to sit, stand, sing or just think about stuff. Chapel can develop your Christian belief or your personal doubts.

Chapel can showcase the musically gifted, or give somebody a chance to read to a (captive) audience. Of course, I have no idea what the current services are like - ancient or modern?

When I was in the Horsham Chapel last, I greatly appreciated the chance to admire the wall paintings. It would be nice and peaceful to see them daily. I thought the chaplain who preached (Rev Mitra?) was a bit of a sweetie; "concerned", "compassionate", and a chaplain who would respect confidentiality. But I'm guessing.

Here's my personal experience of C of E CH. My family lived and breathed Evangelical Christianity. I found it a real pain. I was christened with names that hopefully would propel me to the Mission Field. From tiny tothood onwards I was under constant pressure to give my heart to the Lord Jesus, read a Scripture Union passage in a daily bedside meditation, dress modestly as befitted a Lovely Christian Girl , remember at all times that He died for my sins... you get the picture.

I was the daughter of a South London organist and choirmaster. The family's entire life revolved around Morning and Evening Prayer + Explorers and Pathfinders on Sundays, Young Peoples' Fellowships, Billy Graham, the London City Mission, the Barbican Church Mission to the Jews, Friday Choir Practice, Ladies Prayer Meetings. Never shall I forget the hectorings, the weepings, the wailings over a cousin who converted on marrying a Roman Catholic, women in trousers, the Beatles and the mini-skirt.

My mother was jubilant that the first requirement on the CH list of Stuff To Bring was "The Holy Bible". But, in fact, the Religious Royal and Ancient Foundation was positively a holiday from Jesus as far as I was concerned. Nobody checked on whether you Believed. I enjoyed Chapel on the whole because I liked the ritual,I loved to sing and appreciated a bit of status from being selected for the choir at an early age. Sometimes, I thought about Christianity and other faiths. I developed a love of the old hymns and of choral excellence. I never dared reveal at home that the choir turned eastwards for the creed. I welcomed the extreme dullness of the Rev Walker because it was an opportunity to sit and think quietly. It was a break from having to be funny, my survival technique Several girls got away with wrapping a treasured novel in a Biblical cover to read during the lessons. Although I decided not to be confirmed myself, I liked the celebratory ritual of Confirmation - the service, the Confirmation Cards laid out on the Dayroom tables, the girls looking happy and special in their veils proclaiming their faith.

And, at CH, I could enjoy previously forbidden pop music - oh the thrill! No maternal tears, rantings and reproaches!

I found it strange that we, in a Christian environment, should encounter unrebuked cruelty and vitriol from a few of the members of staff. Strange that the conservatively devout DR should not have been sensitive to unreasonable and unChristian treatment of the girls for whom she professed to care.

The real waste of time was Prayers in House at 07.20 and 17.20. We just went through the motions as quickly as possible.

I'm sorry to type on here, in a sort of stream of consciousness. But no - let CH continue with it's religious traditions.

I value them more now than I did at the time.

Re: Should Christ’s Hospital Stop Being a Faith School?

Posted: Fri Apr 24, 2009 3:38 pm
by AKAP
Angela, thankyou, your post summarises much of my spiritual experience of life at home, then Horsham and now.
My sisters (both slightly older than me) never had the chance to escape to boarding school and to see things from a different perspective. They found their teenage years very difficult. We are a close family and my father is still alive, we love him dearly but I know there is still some resentment about the clashes they went through in their teenage years.

Re: Should Christ’s Hospital Stop Being a Faith School?

Posted: Fri Apr 24, 2009 3:54 pm
by NEILL THE NOTORIOUS
This Topic gets more and more interesting ---reading the opinions and memories of Old (And not so Old ) Blues and how Chapel changed , or failed to change them , is fascinating.
Apropos events in your life which have affected your Faith --- I seem to remember a few "Battlefield Conversions"
Was it not Oscar Wilde (?) who remarked that "When a man is about to die -- it concentrates the mind wonderfully !" :lol:
I am an avowed Christian and tend to defend my Faith (Of whatever Denomination) when needed
Due to circumstances I have been a) Sprinkled (Parents) b) Confirmed (CH)---- and c) Dunked -- (Married a Baptist Missionary !) I don't think any of them make One a Christian - That is a matter of Conviction, Witness and Lifestyle !

Re: Should Christ’s Hospital Stop Being a Faith School?

Posted: Fri Apr 24, 2009 4:37 pm
by sejintenej
I should be a ba** breaking over-zealous rabidly anti anything which is not Cof E if one looks at my background. It started at about 3 months - I honestly can't remember the bath! - just outside Windsor in about as high church C of E as you can get. Skip forward 4 years and I am in the school loosely linked to that chapel. Skip forward a few years and I am at another very very high church C of E church - altar boy (mother';s employer's demand) etc etc. If that wasn't enough, if the family was away I used to have to go with the gardener (who was the preacher) to the local Methodist church (which I found a even greater bore)

CH with chapel only once a week was a blessed relief. I didn't even have to attend communion twice a Sunday (and often a few other days as well) so it was no problem.

To those who don't like being forced to go to chapel a couple of times a week I would say:

- nobody is forcing you to accept as perfection what is said but there is usually a lot of good sense there so digest what is said and try to absorb the good / moral side.
- when you get outside CH there will be infinitely more times when you will have to do things which you actively dislike so consider chapel a lesson in patience

Re: Should Christ’s Hospital Stop Being a Faith School?

Posted: Fri Apr 24, 2009 5:01 pm
by 99yorkpj
kerrensimmonds wrote:Welcome back Philippa!
I'm sure that we've all been where you are. I was forced into a very upright Church in London when I left school, by contacts enforced by my parents. It didn't take me long to say 'stuff that' and to turn away and to indulge in all sorts of unspeakable things which meant that in all conscience I could not go to Church at all.
Yup, I know a lot of people from my year at CH who dropped the faith act as soon as they left - if indeed they had it all in the first place.

Re: Should Christ’s Hospital Stop Being a Faith School?

Posted: Fri Apr 24, 2009 8:46 pm
by midget
I had no particular faith when I started ay CH. My parents were nominal Methodists, and I was baptised into that church, which caused a bit of a headache when I decided to be confirmed. Miss Page (history, and also Church history) was rabidly anti-Catholic, which made it seem something possibly desirable. In my late 20s I discovered that I had been misled about a lot of Catholicism, read a lot about it and decided to convert. I don't think my father was particularly pleased, but it was one of the few things we didn't argue about.

Re: Should Christ’s Hospital Stop Being a Faith School?

Posted: Sat Apr 25, 2009 7:44 pm
by Jo
I'm not going over my views on religion again as I've probably upset a few people on here already :evil:, but just wanted to add that Angela's post was one of her classics. Angela, you have such an ability to evoke the atmosphere of CH in the 60s and 70s with all it's varied influences. Wonderful stuff.

Re: Should Christ’s Hospital Stop Being a Faith School?

Posted: Sun Apr 26, 2009 9:13 am
by michael scuffil
Angela's post is interesting because she must be one of a fairly small minority whose life at CH (and CH Hertford, to boot!) was more liberal than life at home.

For me, CH was an eye-opener in terms of religion because for the first time in my life I found that there were people who took religion seriously and/or seemed to think it was a good thing. My father was an Irishman who came to England not least to escape from the Roman Catholic church. He was vehemently anti-Catholic, but seemed to think that other religions were innocuous. My mother was entirely indifferent. Once, when watching some service on television, she said: "When you see grown men behaving like this, you begin to wonder if there might be something in it." I don't think she ever did more than begin.

So to actually meet a man with a dog collar was new for me. At CH I watched middle England at prayer. I watched and listened carefully. This was English culture, after all. When I am in England, I make an effort to attend Choral Evensong if I'm near a place where they do it. This is unadulterated C of E, fulfilling its "public ritual" role (and mostly, you get an outstanding free concert out of it, too). I don't believe a word of it, but then neither did educated ancient Greeks when they made their sacrifices.