A group of children who were due to make their First Holy Communion have taken part in a lockdown video to mark the occasion.

Twenty-three children in Year 3 at St Gregory's Catholic Primary School, Stratford-upon-Avon, were due to receive the Sacrament on the Feast of Corpus Christi (Sun 14 June).

But due to Covid-19 and lockdown restrictions their special occasion will now take place when they are in Year 4, when they will also make the Sacrament of Reconciliation.

The children were due to receive the Sacrament at the parishes of Our Lady of Peace, Shottery and St Gregory the Great, Stratford-upon-Avon.

Laura Cole, class teacher, said making the video was the children’s special mission – to ensure the occasion was marked and not forgotten.

In addition, parish priest Fr Alex Austin filmed a message and blessing for the children and their families, which features in the video.

“Our parish priest and I have been encouraging the children to see the postponement as more time to prepare and draw closer to God before they will receive the gift of the Blessed Sacrament, Our Lord,” said Laura.

“The children have filled the hearts of the community at St Gregory's with their incredibly reflective attitude towards the gift of the Eucharist that they will receive in the future.

“We are extremely proud of the joy, compassion and faith that they have shown throughout this time; shining as a light in the darkness for all to see.

“Their words and actions have encouraged us to see time as a blessing, not dwelling on the occasions that have been lost, but drawing together in faith with each other with the Lord by our side."

For the video the children were not given parts or scripted sections, but instead were asked to prepare by saying a prayer, speaking the word of the Gospel or singing a hymn.

“As their class teacher, I was truly blown away by the ideas and tremendous reflection that they showed,” said Laura.
“The children are being set weekly RE tasks as part of their home learning and the activities for First Holy Communion are part of those tasks to ensure that they can be prepared for this gift, in themselves and with their family.”
In addition to the special video the whole of St Gregory’s have used this time in lockdown to draw closer in prayer through a range of activities.

The school recently took part in the Maisy Milk: Rosary for Peace Initiative in the month of May and as a school prayed 1,075 decades across the week.

The children have also been sent specific religious home learning tasks for Easter and half-term focusing on the Liturgical events.