The students of St. Bonaventure Catholic School on March 29 entered into the liturgical season of the Triduum by participating in a Holy Thursday Morning of Prayer. The morning was a prayer experience led by the 7th graders as the head of their Faith Families that day. The school’s Campus Ministry Committee, comprised of the school’s administration, teachers, and parent volunteers, made this day possible for all students.
“Then he said to them, “My soul is sorrowful even to death. Remain here and keep watch.” —Mark 14:34
At Jesus’ Agony in the Garden, He asked His apostles to keep watch and pray with Him. This scripture passage is the inspiration and heart of St. Bonaventure’s Morning of Prayer. As the Church entered into the season of the Triduum, students from transitional kindergarten to grade 7 participated in this solemn period of prayer. The Morning of Prayer began at approximately 8:15 a.m. after all students unpacked in preparation for the day, and it ended at 12 noon, prior to dismissal. At the same time, this day was a rite of passage for the 7th graders because they led their Faith Families for the first time as the 8th graders were on their Washington D.C. trip.
The morning began with the gathering of Faith Families, clusters of students consisting of a representative from each grade. All assembled at the front of the school as the 7th graders reenacted Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem with palms and praise. Then, each family convened into their assigned classroom, and the 7th graders led the students in an Agape Meal Prayer Service, where flatbread and grape juice was served. Following the service, each student participated in a craft commemorating the day. After a short morning break, the students were led by the teachers to various prayer stations to be with Jesus in prayer.
Various stations were set up around campus. Faith Families were welcome to adore Jesus in the Most Blessed Sacrament. Two rooms were set up with candles and bibles for Lectio Divina, focusing on passages of the Passion of Christ from the Gospels. Another section was set up with bibles, candles, and Gregorian Chant for a Taize meditation on Psalm 22. In Mary’s Courtyard, rosaries were available to meditate on the mysteries of the rosary. Outside, Faith Families were invited to walk laps while praying the Chaplet of Divine Mercy. On the small field, Stations of the Cross were set up for those who wanted to walk with Jesus on His way to Calvary. In one of the pavilions, art stations were set up for doodling prayers. The goal was to open the students to the various forms of prayer to be able express their faith in Christ. In experiencing this morning of prayer, the students and teachers had an opportunity to encounter Christ in new way.