Welcome to the<br />
Anglican Schools Office

Welcome to the
Anglican Schools Office

Supporting Anglican schools <br />
in Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia

Supporting Anglican schools
in Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia

Welcome to the<br />
Anglican Schools Office

Welcome to the
Anglican Schools Office

Supporting Anglican schools <br />
in Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia

Supporting Anglican schools
in Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia

Supporting Anglican schools <br />
in Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia

Supporting Anglican schools
in Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia

Home SidebarWelcome

to the Anglican Schools Office

The Anglican Schools Office exists to support, resource, provide training opportunities and build fellowship between the Chaplains and Religious Education teachers working in its associated schools in Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia, and encourage interaction between the schools and the church.

 

Term 3

A Word from Anne.

Recently I ran for the first time the “Spirituality and Wellbeing” seminar that is offered in our PD programme. While much of the seminar focuses on “spiritual” areas that have long been recognised as central to well-being (meaning, connection, hope), it’s being increasingly recognised that there is another key area of spiritual well-being for children and youth today: dealing with guilt. Not so much the guilt associated with “doing the wrong thing”, but rather the guilt associated with failure to do the right thing globally and personally. We are all aware of being bombarded with calls for help from those suffering, not only in our own community, but in communities spread across the world. The very real effects of climate change mean guilt is attached to the use of plastic, eating too much meat, using too much energy. And through it all, our students also live with the spectre of failing to meet the increasingly high expectations of parents, schools, peers—and social media. Little wonder that it can all seem overwhelming. What exacerbates the problem today is that while all these opportunities for guilt and failure have grown, those voices which spoke of a way for guilt and failure to be forgiven and healed are increasingly silent. In schools, we know the importance of setting high expectations and doing all we can to help students reach them, but what do we do with the burden of guilt and failure when these expectations are not reached? Yes, it is right and important that we encourage students to engage in acts of service and justice (and much of this newsletter celebrates just that), but how do we do so without placing the burden of the world on their shoulders?

The very real effects of climate change mean guilt is attached to the use of plastic, eating too much meat, using too much energy. And through it all, our students also live with the spectre of failing to meet the increasingly high expectations of parents, schools, peers—and social media. Little wonder that it can all seem overwhelming.

What exacerbates the problem today is that while all these opportunities for guilt and failure have grown, those voices which spoke of a way for guilt and failure to be forgiven and healed are increasingly silent. In schools, we know the importance of setting high expectations and doing all we can to help students reach them, but what do we do with the burden of guilt and failure when these expectations are not reached? Yes, it is right and important that we encourage students to engage in acts of service and justice (and much of this newsletter celebrates just that), but how do we do so without placing the burden of the world on their shoulders?

As Anglican schools, we do have a response to this problem. We can set all our expectations within the framework of God’s forgiveness, hope and renewing love. We can ensure that students know that they are not left to carry the burden of the world on their own shoulders. Jesus is “carrying the yoke” with them. Of course we will fail at times, and it’s right to be sorry about that. Of course the world’s problems are too big for us to solve, but we don’t have to be paralysed by helplessness. In the end, the world is in God’s hands. We have the Good News to communicate to our students that God will carry the burdens of the world, and of our own guilt and failure. We are simply encouraged to do what we can with joy.

Bless you. 

Bishop Justin Duckworth at a Huntley School confirmation