What did the trip involve?
A group of seven AS and A2 students visited St. Cassian’s Centre in Kintbury, Berkshire, during the last weekend of February 2012. The centre is run by the De La Salle Brothers and is a retreat centre for young people. Our students took part in a programme which focussed on the themes of ‘Awareness’ and ‘Reconciliation.’ The programme involved presentations, small group work, walks in the countryside, time for silent reflection and prayer times. Four schools took part in the retreat and they were from various parts of England. The group from Lampton were a ‘pioneer’ group; it was the first time we have taken Lampton students on a retreat.
What did staff at the centre say about Lampton students?
The staff at St.Cassian’s Centre commented on how well our students participated in the retreat and integrated with students from different schools. They said that they were extremely impressed by our students, and particularly the maturity and generosity that they demonstrated.
What did Lampton students say about the trip?
Here is a selection of some of the comments that students wrote about the trip, with a comment from each of the students who took part in the trip.
‘Before I came on the trip I did have doubts about what to expect because when I heard religious retreat, I just thought it was going to convert me. Once I got here and saw what it was like it was nothing like what I thought, they are so open and they do not judge at all. The whole experience was just the best time of my life and I would recommend it to anyone.’ (Year 13 student)
“It is a ‘Christian retreat’ but it is not exclusive to just that, it is so much more. I came here very reluctantly and I have never been so wrong about something in my whole life. I can tell you that I left this place a different person, honestly. I had the most laughs ever and I actually cried (not ashamed to say). This trip is the best thing that has happened in my life so far.’ (Year 13 student)
‘The Kintbury retreat was possibly one of the best experiences of my life. It made me see the world in a new perspective…I have loved every minute of the experience…I really felt at home and I loved that I was appreciated and accepted. I shall never forget the experience’ (Year 12 student)
‘It was the social experience of a lifetime. You are meeting people you wouldn’t normally meet and its fun….a great place to be and I would love to come back,’ (Year 12 student)
‘I think that everyone should come to visit Kintbury because it is an awesome place. You get the chance to meet lots of nice and funny people. The team teach you lots of new things, they teach you how to reconcile, how not to judge. Other people teach you about faith. We were able to be ourselves and share our thoughts and be open with each other.’ (Year twelve student)
‘They are accepting of everyone and the leaders are like bundles of energy because they are so enthusiastic and great at leading…The experience is life changing.’ (Year twelve student)
‘The Kintbury experience is absolutely amazing…take it from me, one of the pioneers of the trip…Don’t worry if you aren’t Catholic or even if you are an atheist (like me) they welcome everyone and respect you for who you are.’ (Year 13 student)