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Ecclesfield School, Friday Feast and Real Lives

Thursday 10th September 2015

The Archbishop of York Dr John Sentamu is to visit Ecclesfield School, the largest school in Sheffield, to talk to Year 9, 10 and 11 students about matters of faith and justice on Friday 11 September.

 During his visit, the Archbishop is to lead a discussion with around 350 students in Year 9.  He will also join the students in Years 10 and 11 as part of their GSCE Religious Studies lesson where he will explain his own story of faith and what it means to live out the Gospel in every-day life. The Archbishop will be accompanied by Rev Rick Stordy, vicar at St John’s Chapeltown, Ben Tanner, a youth minister and two Ordinands who are in training for ordained ministry in the Church of England.

Joel Wirth, Headteacher at Ecclesfield School said: “We are immeasurably proud and excited to welcome the Archbishop to Ecclesfield School. It is our earnest belief that open dialogue about matters of faith and justice is critical in helping students develop a rounded understanding of the modern world. Where so many communities are being torn apart by dogma and ignorance, the Archbishop’s visit is an opportunity for our students to participate in the activity of civilised society.”​

The Archbishop said: “In asking questions about faith and justice, we often find out more about ourselves in the process.  I want to encourage these young people to know that they are loved by God and that they each can make a difference. I am looking forward to sharing my story of faith with the students at Ecclesfield and also later on at the Real Lives event at St John’s Chapeltown.”

Following his visit to Ecclesfield School, the Archbishop will attend the Friday Feast, High Green at 4pm with Maureen Greaves.  Friday Feast is especially aimed at tackling poverty and was set up by Maureen, and her husband who was murdered on his way to play the organ on Christmas Eve night in 2012.  Maureen said: “We hope to open a community allotment and tool bank later this year as the next step in the work of the project.  Helping to fight poverty through the Friday Feast is a key part of our work and shows that Christian faith is both meaningful and practical.  I think that is great that the Archbishop wants to come and meet people who often feel that they live on the edge of society and don’t feel they are important.”

Dr Sentamu will then visit St John’s Church, Chapeltown for the Real Lives event, from 7pm onwards. At this event, the Archbishop will talk about his own faith and how Jesus is part of his life – with an open question and answer session. 

This forms part of a four-day historic ‘Crossroads’ mission across Sheffield Diocese involving 21 Bishops of the Church of England.  Hundreds of events will take place as part of the Crossroads Mission across the region in schools, pubs, universities, colleges, shopping centres, community centres, cafes and churches. For more details on the Crossroads Mission, please visit: 


For media enquiries relating to the Archbishop of York or for photography following the visits, please email: or contact mb. 07738 354491

For media access to attend Friday Feast for photos with the Archbishop and Maureen Greaves at 4pm at St Saviour’s Church Hall (Mortomley Lane, S35 3HS), please contact Vicar Simon Bessant at mb. 07957 211319

About Ecclesfield School,  S35 9WD

Ecclesfield School, Chapeltown Road is an all-ability, co-educational 11-16 comprehensive school. The school’s intake is drawn largely from north-east Sheffield, including Ecclesfield, Chapeltown and High Green, though many students travel from further afield. The standard student number is 350 and our current roll is 1774, making Ecclesfield the largest school in the city. For more information about the School, please visit:


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