Events & Speakers | Posted 14.12.2016

Campion Day

Campion Day 1st December 2016 –

Campion Day has always been an important Feast Day in the Stonyhurst calendar, where the whole school comes together to celebrate the life of Edmund Campion.  It provides an opportunity for the school to pause and grow in knowledge and understanding of this great Martyr.  This year on 1st December, its celebration became a retreat day for the whole College, including pupils from Figures and Rudiments at Stonyhurst St Mary’s Hall.

Edmund Campion is a hugely significant figure of Elizabethan times and, as an inspiration to our founder Robert Persons, of particular significance to Stonyhurst.  He was an eloquent speaker who sought to debate religious issues with the leaders of the Elizabethan Church.  In the light of the re-telling of his story, pupils were given time to reflect upon their own faith and what they stand for, so they could think about where they have come from, where they are now and where they are going.

The day started off with a whole school assembly in St Peter’s Church, where the story of Campion was reinacted by staff and pupils from across all age groups.  The pupils then followed a retreat programme of workshops and activities in their respective lines.

As with all celebrations, there was feast day fun as pupils took part in a dance fitness session in the Ambulacrum.  This proved quite a challenge for some, co-ordinating 80’s dance moves alongside Bollywood, Irish and Arabian steps!

Jan Graffius, our resident curator, and her team explained the significance of some of the items from the Collections that are linked to Campion’s story.  Pupils then moved on to spend time with John Moffat, a Jesuit priest, who reflected on the legacy of Edmund Campion and how this is lived out in Jesuit work today.

In another workshop, three O.S were welcomed back to join in the reflections with pupils.  They shared their experiences, telling students how following the Jesuit principles absorbed during their time at Stonyhurst has left a lasting impression and guided their lives since leaving. As Will Jones, Rhetoric commented, “The retreat gave me great insight into how Jesuit history can still have meaning today for the younger generation.”