Trinity School Our Christian Identity
Our vision is inspired by the words of Jesus in John’s gospel:
“I came so that they could have life, and have it full to overflowing” (John 10:10)
We believe that every young person in our care is uniquely valuable, important and deserves the chance to flourish. Our vision is of a hopeful, compassionate community which provides every student with the knowledge, skills and opportunities to enable them to lead a full and fulfilling life.
Our vision is built upon our five Christian values:
At the heart of our Christian identity is the belief that each of our young people is uniquely made in the image of God. We take seriously our responsibility to nurture them as they grow in heart, mind, soul and strength.
We describe ourselves to students, staff and parents as a family, team Trinity. This ethos of care affects all we do to support students with their academic education, their personal learning and future ambitions. We are full of hope that we can make a profound difference to the lives of young people.
Recognising the importance of our calling to care for the marginalised and vulnerable, we pride ourselves on our exemplary pastoral support and invest both time and resources into this area of our work.
We believe that every member of our community is ‘fearfully and wonderfully made’ (Ps. 139:14). As a result we are unashamedly inclusive.
We understand the transformative power of grace and forgiveness. Relationships between staff and students are key to providing a good atmosphere for learning. We treat each other with compassion but take a firm line when needed, restoring relationships and making sure that lost sheep are returned to the fold.
Our school chaplain, Mr Burdon, provides pastoral and spiritual guidance for our school community and leads our collective worship. Our school chapel was opened by the Bishop of Carlisle in 2021. It is a place on peace and sanctuary where everyone is welcome. The chapel provides a physical space within school for prayer, reflection and worship. It is a visible sign of our Christian identity, a place of encounter and spirituality at the heart of our school. The chapel is open most days at breaktime and lunchtime. Sometimes there are set activities (Christian Union, discussion groups, meditation, games), at other times students are free to drop-in as they wish. There are interactive prayer stations, and a place to leave prayer requests. Cards with set prayers and Bible verses are available for students to take away. A simple weekly service of prayer and worship is held every Monday after school. Next to the chapel is the ‘Living Room’ – an informal and sociable space for discussion and other activities.
Collective Worship: Inclusive, Invitational and Inspiring
Within the busyness of the school day, collective worship at Trinity provides a valuable space for spirituality for all members of the school community. It is rooted in our Anglican Christian identity and draws deeply on our school’s Christian values. Collective worship encourages participants to look both inward and outward. It points them beyond themselves and their own experience to that of others, to the world around them and, for many, towards God. The Church of England, through its worship and mission, seeks to serve the whole community, not just those who identify as Christian or gather in the church building. In the same way, the worshipping life of Trinity School is for the benefit and enrichment of all.
Being inclusive means that worship at Trinity is available and accessible to all. It recognises and honours the breadth and diversity of our community. While it is distinctively Christian and rooted in our Anglican identity, this is not expressed to the exclusion of those of other faiths or no faith.
To say that our worship is invitational means that it is offered to, but not forced upon participants. Students are expected to be present and respectful during times of worship, but is no compulsion to (for example) pray or assent to religious beliefs expressed. The metaphor of ‘warm fires and open doors’ is helpful. Worship, like a warm fire, has a life-giving quality. The door is open for all to come in, enjoy its warmth, sitting as close to it as feels comfortable.
Our worship aims to inspire. It is not a neutral experience, but one through which participants may grow and develop. We aim for it to be uplifting, and an assurance of the hope that sits at the heart of our school values. It should also inspire action. In pointing participants to the world beyond themselves, collective worship can be a starting point for courageous advocacy, speaking-out and acting for a fairer and more just world.
Our pattern of worship
Times of worship are shaped by the rhythm of the year, with weekly themes reflecting important seasons, key moments (both religious and secular) and the seasons of the Church’s year. They are planned in advance and link to our five Christian values.
‘Amos’ time – (A Moment Of Stillness).
A daily time of focus gives students the chance to reflect with their form tutor. A set pattern is followed, using a focus for reflection which relates to the weekly theme. This is usually a picture and verse, but is sometimes a short video or piece of music and is used by forms across the school.
Thought for the Week.
This is led by our chaplain via Microsoft Teams during form time. Students are invited to reflect deeply on the weekly theme, and respond in a variety of ways, for example through prayer, discussion or action.
Each year group has a weekly assembly, led by their head of year or a member of the senior leadership team. Time is also set aside within assembly for collective worship and assembly leaders draw their focus from the weekly theme.
Throughout the Year
A various points during the year the school community gathers for moments of collective worship. These include:
Year 7 welcome service at Carlisle Cathedral
Whole school Act of Remembrance for Armistice Day
Year 7 Nativity
Whole school Christmas Service (streamed from the chapel to form rooms)
Christmas Carol service at Carlisle Cathedral
Year 11/13 leavers’ services at Carlisle Cathedral
Our School Prayer
God of Adventure,
You call us to follow your Son,
in transforming the world:
inspire our minds by your Spirit
and fill our hearts with your love,
that we may grow into the people you intend,
reflect your life in the world
and bring all those we love to you
for the sake of Him who gave His all for us, Jesus Christ.