We were thrilled with the turnout for our first-ever Grandparent Day, with more than 220 grandparents turning up. The boys provided a warm welcome to their grandparents on what turned out to be a cold summer’s day.
It was the responsibility of the grandsons to host their special guests for the morning and it was heartwarming to see the way in which they did that. Our visiting grandparents were welcomed outside the Chapel and escorted to the gymnasium for morning tea and a welcome by Rector Jon McDowall. They were then taken on a tour of four areas of the college.
In Grimes they witnessed first-hand some wonderful cooking in action and viewed some of the artistic talents of our art students through their display boards.
The Dining Hall was also a popular stop on the tour with our very special art installation, a pictorial history of St Bede’s. The guests of Grandparents Day were the first to view this artwork, which was only installed the day before.
The beautiful Chapel of St Bede was also a favourite stop for many grandparents, the heart of our college, which we are very proud of.
The Boarding Hostel brought back memories for some of our old boys on the tour also.
Thank you to the prefects who did a wonderful job of leading the tour groups around.
To complete our first Grandparents’ Day we gathered in the gym for a liturgy led by the students. Grandparent and grandparent figures who were unable to be with us were remembered in the opening prayer and through the lighting of the Easter candle.
The boys acknowledged the Advent season and our preparation for Christmas by reading the Gospel of St Luke, The Birth of Jesus, followed by these words:
The birth of Jesus brought such joy and hope to the world. The beginning of this holy family reminds us of how important family is in our lives and especially at this time of Christmas.
Today we honour our grandparents and grandparent figures who love us unconditionally.
Reasons why the boys love their grandparents were recorded in a brief video, which you can watch here: https://www.stbedes.school.nz/2023-grandparents-day-video.
To finish the liturgy, the following prayer was prayed:
God of love,
We thank you for our wonderful grandparents and those who play this role in our lives.
They bring such joy and happiness to us.
Thank you for all the special times that we have with them.
Please watch over them, protect them and care for them wherever they are.
May they always know our love and Yours.
We look forward to hosting our second Grandparent Day in 2024. This special occasion will now be an annual event on the St Bede’s College Calendar.