Friday was another good day with just the right number of people visiting at break time and lunch time. We also had quite a few staff through during the quiet moments, including most of the office staff, who loved it! At the end of the day we had four young people come, some for the first time, and the ensuing conversations meant it was well past 4pm before we could begin packing up.
We had over 150 visits during the week, loads of conversations about God and prayer, and many opportunities to share our faith naturally in response to questions. So what have learnt from this, our second Sanctum prayer room in school?
Young people accept and respect what's going on, even if they struggle to engage with it beyond the superficial. There's no doubt that just about everyone recognised it as a 'special place'.
Most young people struggle to articulate the spiritual because they do not have safe opportunities to do so. But when presented with something like 'Sanctum' they readily speak up about their thoughts and experiences. Some expressed a genuine gratitude to us for running Sanctum in their school.
An obvious point, but students get greatest benefit from the activities when someone explains it to them and then chats to them about it afterwards, developing a greater depth of understanding and reflection.
If we're to do a Sanctum 2, as some staff and students requested, we're going to have to work on some new material. This is also true of the possibility of taking a version of Sanctum into the Sixth Form College.
We don't yet have any further bookings, beyond previous expressions of interest. But from our experience of two very different schools I know we're doing the right thing.