I am certainly glad that in the dark and cold days of winter, which can be gloomy and often depressing, that there is a focal point for some fun and celebration. Christmas provides us with a time of holiday and relaxation. I hope that, when it comes, your Christmas celebration with be happy and full of enjoyment.
Christmas to me…
Why is the 25th of December considered to be the most important day of the year? It seems obvious, yet it is a question few of us actually answer.
Christmas to me is…….a reminder of a childhood filled with happiness and joy...of open fires, woolly jumpers, hats and gloves, warm drinks and hot food, warmth against the harsh winter months....being tucked up in bed on Christmas eve full of anticipation,... of decorations and lights that sparkle and shine,.... watching Laurel and Hardy each morning on TV, having an abundance of food & treats……my sister always up first, shouting, “its Christmas”…..opening stocking’s with whoop’s of joy at the amounts of chocolates and little surprises.
Christmas to me…
Being brought up in Poland, Christmas has always been the most ‘family’ event in the whole year. As a kid I used to stare at the sky to catch a glimpse of the first star which was ultimately a sign to begin our ‘Wigilia’ (Christmas supper) - on 24th December around 5pm.
Growing up Christmas was about magic. I remember sleepless Christmas Eve nights, barely able to contain my excitement, me and my sister hatching a plan to catch Santa in the act of eating his mince pies and drinking sherry. The ritual of Christmas Eve as a child, new pyjamas, grandparents sleeping over, a Chinese takeaway (tradition in our house!) and a surprise early present from Santa. Every year without fail a mysterious gift would appear; under our pillows, dropped at the front door, delivered with the Chinese – I still to this day don’t know who did it and how, and I don’t want to know….it was magic.
Christmas to me is all about wonder and amazement. The traditional Midnight Mass, preceded by the singing of Carols, is the best way I can enter into the mystery of Christmas. From being a small child I was always brought to Midnight Mass (which was actually at Midnight), by my Mum and Dad, and, although I could barely keep my eyes open, the night always seemed so full of hope and excitement.
What is Christmas for you?
After all the rushing around shopping and preparing the house, Christmas for me starts with the children’s mass at St. Charles. It really feels like Christmas when the primary children dressed in nativity costumes, and the occasional superhero, are gathered around the altar.
Christmas to me is taking any opportunity to eat and drink with friends just because, “it’s Christmas!” Putting cinnamon on top of everything to make it festive and not being allowed to eat any food at home because apparently it is all for Christmas day. Sharing food with all your favourite people and getting a bit merry is my favourite kind of Christmas activity. Everybody makes even more of an effort to make plans and gets into the Christmas spirit.
Christmas to me…
Christmas is usually seen as a time when colds plague us, yet we're still as jolly and merry as we can be. Fairy lights are strung above a cosy fireplace and wrapped around a pine tree interlocking with tinsel and vibrant bubbles. Wrapping paper gets turned into confetti as smile stretch from cheek to cheek as presents are opened and stomachs grow full of turkey and Christmas puddings.
Christmas to me spurs me on to think about how Christmas is cold on the outside and warm on the inside!
Christmas to me is the time of year for giving, for creating memories, the time of family gatherings with old women you have never seen in your life, claiming that you have grown since ‘last time’. The time for silly arguments about which bauble goes where and ‘who ate my advent chocolate’.
Christmas to me is all about Christ – it’s in the name. What God has done in sending his son Jesus to live on this earth has changed everything, for now the one who made us has become one of us.
My dad was a great man – as tough and strong as they come (a former paratrooper) but as soft as can be. He had inherited from his mum the notion that children can do no wrong – except when they did! Nothing was too much trouble for him on our account – that was his love.
Christmas to me is …
I love Christmas. Christmas trees, the roast dinner, pulling crackers, staying in your pajamas until late afternoon…oh, and don’t even get me started on the presents; that’s the best bit! Inside we all know that the presents are the best bit, well, that’s what I think.
During Advent I prepare my Nativity: I stick on the wall my starry sky, make the mountains with empty boxes and old newspapers, a small river, the grotto, few lights, then I start filling the scene with my little statues: shepherds, sheep, donkey and ox, the Angel, Mary and Joseph. I prepare the crib with straw, and at last I place baby Jesus. Everything is just perfect, and I find myself looking often at this scene, in
silence and wonder.
Christmas to me is … Nowadays, Christmas is so much different to when I was a child. Special people are missing from around the table and the mad rush to open your presents just isn’t the same, however, Christmas Day still remains really special in the Riley household.
Christmas to me is Family. That’s the first thing I think of when someone mentions
Christmas. Of course being Mum to two young daughters I suppose that is to be
expected. But it’s not just about them, it’s the time of year my parents and sister
stay over so we can all wake up together on Christmas morning. It’s the traditions
that you set as a family.
Christmas to me is….prompted by my first memory of Christmas - sitting in front of a big blazing coal fire in our very modest two-up two-down terraced house. A big Christmas tree was in the corner of the room with some modest gifts underneath it (and no television in those days!).
Christmas to me has a variety of meanings! As a Cristian, Christmas is one of the most important times in my year! It’s a time to stop and reflect on what God did for me and the rest of His children. God loves us so much that He sent His only Son - Jesus down to earth so that we could be saved!
Christmas turns in a moment from anticipation of the day to the sadness of presents opened and feasts consumed. The smallest details are of great significance at this time of year. I remember the worn, years-old and faded tissue paper that crinkled off the ancient German tree decorations with which my mother would dress the tree on Christmas Eve.
We hope that all our pupils and their families have a safe and happy summer and are able to make the most of time together in July and August.
The summer holidays can, however, be a difficult time for some families and can also be a period during which the good weather, long days and free time can lead young people to take risks that they would not otherwise entertain at other times of the year.
You might find the following contact numbers and advice useful for this summer.
It’s all Cricket!
ST AMBROSE BARLOW RC HIGH PARENT SCHOOL COUNCIL
St Ambrose Barlow RC High Parent School Council is hosting an evening of cricket, accompanied by drinks and a BBQ.
Come and join us to celebrate the end of another successful school year. Fancy taking on the teachers? Or, just want to meet up with fellow parents, carers and pupils?
Dear Parent, Carer or Friend of St. Ambrose Barlow,
I am sure that, like our staff, you have been deeply affected by the terrible events in Manchester city centre. As a school community we are fortunate that although some pupils and staff were present at the concert, all are alive and well. Our staff have provided as much support as possible to young people who are upset by recent events and we will continue to do so over the coming days. On Tuesday we said prayers as a staff and in each form group in memory of those killed and injured and as a gesture of solidarity with all affected by the attack.
At St. Ambrose Barlow RC High School we intend to make some changes to our school day from 1st September, 2017. These changes have been discussed with the Governing Body and we are now putting them to a consultation with parents, carers, staff, pupils and other stakeholders.
We would like to thank all parents who supported the Curriculum Evening held on 2nd March 2017. Many parents have requested copies of the presentations/ Booklet used on the evening.
Year 9 pupils at St Ambrose Barlow High School have been teaching Year 4 pupils from local primary schools how to use industry standard Architecture software – possibly a world first!
Dear Parent or Carer,
Additional Training Day: January 9th, 2017
I am writing to you to inform you that we will be holding an additional training day for staff on January 9th, 2017. This means that on that day the school will not be open to pupils and students. I apologise for any inconvenience that this causes you, but I hope that you appreciate the urgency of this day in the light of our recent inspection report. I also hope that by giving you sufficient notice of the change that you are able to put in place childcare arrangements. School will open to pupils and students at the usual time on Tuesday, January 10th...
Dear Parent or Carer,
Thank you for attending Year 11 or 13 Parents' Evening last night. The attendance for Y11 was 75% and for Y13 was 47%. I would be grateful if you could take a few moments to complete a short online survey that will allow us to judge the effectiveness of the evening and put in place improvements.
Dear Parent, Carer or Friend of St. Ambrose Barlow RC High School,
Today we were forced to evacuate the school at 12:40 pm due to a non-serious chemical spill. I am pleased to say that, as of 5:45 pm the fire and rescue services have left the building and we will be open tomorrow at the usual time. This decision has been taken in consultation with Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue and SPiE, our facilities management company, prioritising the safety of all in the school...
St Ambrose Barlow RC High School and Sixth Form welcomed students and parents, past and present to this year’s Presentation Evening at Maxwell Hall, Salford University. The evening was a fantastic celebration of the pupils’ achievements, particularly those who have just received GCSE and BTEC results, but also an opportunity to praise individual successes in different subject areas and excellence in Sport and the Arts.
Video produced by the St Ambrose Barlow RC High School Council 2016.
We were delighted to welcome English National Ballet and the Manchester International Festival to work with pupils from St. Patrick’s and our own students on dance based on the forthcoming performance of Giselle.
Thursday 7th July 2016 4:00pm - 7:00pm
I am writing to inform you that on Tuesday 5th July, members of the NUT teaching union will be taking strike action and I shall have no alternative than to close the school to pupils...
We would like to thank all parents who supported the Curriculum Evening held on 2nd March 2016, it was a huge success and many parents have subsequently requested copies of the presentations used.
As we reach the end of our 60th anniversary year we have taken the decision to update our school badge and introduce a Latin motto.
On 24th September all year 7 pupils took part in Retreat Days. These were led by RE teacher Mrs Dwyer-Moores. Pupils explored their gifts and talents, their hopes and aspirations and the unique role of a Catholic school. All pupils had a great time and even had an opportunity to rehearse their singing for the Welcome Mass that evening. Thanks for a great day year 7!
On Monday 23rd March, members of Sidney Sussex College, University of Cambridge Student Access Initiative delivered a presentation to all of our Year 10 MAPs.
Four Year 11 pupils from St Ambrose Barlow RC High School are the National Winners of a prestigious design competition.
A wave of enthusiasm is flowing through the Diocese of Salford. Nearly 900 young people have responded to the call from the bishop to be leaders in the Faith, witnesses to Jesus Christ proclaiming that the prevailing culture of our time is just not good enough for them.