At 6:15am on Friday 10th March, a dedicated group of 17 students boarded a coach to London for the Flame trip. Along with our friends from Cardinal Allen School, Fleetwood, we made the long journey down to our Capitol City for an intensive 2 days of sightseeing and attending the Flame Youth Congress in Wembley Arena. Mr Conway expertly led the group around all the sights of London, informing us of the history of many great monuments and buildings . Our tour included a visit to St Paul’s Cathedral, the Natural History Museum and an evening walk past the Houses of Parliament, the River Thames & London Eye and Buckingham Palace. We were all worn out after a long day of travelling and exploring, and the burger at Planet Hollywood for dinner was welcome reward!
Our day on Saturday was spent in Wembley Arena for the Flame Congress. We joined 10,000 other young people in the arena, and the atmosphere was electric! We heard from many great speakers, including Cardinal Bo from Myanmar (Burma), who spoke of the difficulties his country is having with the birth of democracy, civil war and the persecution of minority groups. He reminded us of the power of hope in the face of difficult times, and to remember to value our diversity. We also heard from Fr Augusto from CAFOD, who shared his story and his memories of Pope Francis with us and told us of the importance of listening to the cry of the earth and the cry of the poor. Rise theatre performed some moving drama pieces, including a story of hope told from inside a real boat that had carried 32 refugees to safety, and award- winning musician Matt Redman performed many of his songs in between the speakers and during our time of prayer. It was a wonderful, uplifting and inspiring trip. We hope the lessons learned will encourage our students to continue helping others & share the important messages we heard with others.