More than 600 primary schoolchildren from across the Archdiocese came together at St Oswald's Church in Old Swan, Liverpool before Christmas to mark the end of the Year of Mercy.
The children from a range of schools had taken up the challenge to undertake corporal and spiritual works of mercy throughout the year, as requested by Archbishop Malcolm Malcolm, and they now gathered for a celebration of their efforts led by John Burland, a musician and religious educator from Sydney, Australia, who had previously visited schools in the Wigan area of the Archiodiocese.
At the host school, St Oswald's, each class had to perform a work of mercy – from collecting unwanted clothes and taking them to a charity shop, to making cards to send to sick people in the community, to creating a remembrance garden. The activities at other schools included the following:
• Pupils at St John Fisher, Widnes collected clothes for charity and the homeless, as well as food for the hungry, and wrote prayers for the sick.
• At Bishop Eton, Childwall, pupils made a spiritual bouquet of prayers for sick people in the parish and gave them to the SVP to deliver.
• Children at St Mary's, Newton made a model of Pope Francis and wrote down all the things they hoped to achieve during the year on his vestments.
• St Michael and All Angels, Kirkby pupils retweeted Pope Francis's words on the Year of Mercy, wrote prayers for prisoners on a chain of freedom, took part in Cafod's Make a Splash campaign, raised money for refugees and went on a pilgrimage praying for the homeless.
• At Our Lady of the Assumption, Gateacre, pupils gathered items to donate to the British Heart Foundation's charity shops.