With excitement, wonder and an air of mystery the Year 6 class from St Chrysostom’s school went to see the college and visit the monastic community at Mirfield.
Met by former Parish Assistant Jack and welcomed by Br. Jacob (the youngest in the community by 20 years!) the children were quickly made to feel welcome. We started with a tour of the grounds ending with a visit to the wonderfully refurbished church to see the brothers. Unfortunately for them though the chickens proved to be far more popular, however most would agree the monks were far better at singing!
The juxtaposition of the community grounds compared to the area of Manchester we come from made us think. Many wished to return or failing that, hoped to try and live their lives in a more peaceful and respectful way.
Aiswarya wrote: I learnt a lot about Christians at Mirfield. After we arrived some of the students welcomed us including Jack who is now a student. We were split into 3 groups and carefully we explored the wonders inside the community. We met some honey bears; cute lovely chickens and some colourful fish. After that we gathered in church to listen to some music and sing songs. We went to a quiet room and Jacob told us that they discuss things there and we could ask him questions. I loved the fact that we were able to ask any questions we want and discuss our opinions. I hope I can visit Mirfield again and again!
And Daniaal: As I entered the Mirfield centre I knew it was not an ordinary church, it was unique. As I looked at my surroundings I realised it was the beginning of a new life. As I entered the festival room I saw something I had never seen before, a monk! I felt amazed inside. They all wore robes and taught us about Christianity including 12 signs to help us remember what they do. As we left it was the end of a new beginning.
Some things we learned about monks
· They have to pray 5 times a day,they have to meditate and study
· They have to stay silent as often as they can – which no one in the class could ever do!
· They only get two hours recreation a day – which is ok as they are allowed to play football and cricket
· They have to get up at 6:00am
· Their lives are run by bells
And finally you don’t have to be bald to be a monk!