The Church of England Bishop of Salisbury and Roman Catholic Bishop of Plymouth have jointly blessed a chapel in a school under the joint management of both Churches. The new chapel in St Edward's RC/CofE School in Poole was blessed and open during the annual Week of Prayer for Church Unity, kept by Christians across the world. St Edward's is one of only around twenty schools under joint Roman Catholic/Church of England management nationwide.
Michael Antram, Head teacher St Edward's RC/CofE School, said: "It's really special that both bishops came here to dedicate the chapel as a further expression of unity, especially this week. This was the fulfilment of a promise they made just over a year ago when they both came here to commission me as head teacher.
"St Edward's has always had a chapel, but the existing one doesn't accommodate a whole class, so we decided to convert a classroom into a chapel.
"On Wednesday, the new chapel spent its last day as a modern foreign languages room. People have been working hard to install the Christian symbols which will mark it out as a place of prayer. This original will become a chapel of legacy and foundation, to remember all those students who epitomise what St Edwards is about."
The Rt Revd Nicholas Holtam, Anglican Bishop of Salisbury, said: "It is a particular delight that Bishop Mark and I are blessing the new chapel in this week, as St Edward's is an ecumenical school in every sense.
"St Edward's embraces not only different Christian traditions, but as a comprehensive, it teaches children of all abilities, maintaining academic excellence in doing so."
The Rt Revd Mark O'Toole, Catholic Bishop of Plymouth, added: "As we recall the prayer of Jesus that all his disciples be one, I am delighted to be here at St Edward's School during this Week of Prayer for Christian Unity.
"It is good to be able to celebrate the Joint Service with Bishop Nicholas and to bless the new chapel. St Edward's rightly has a strong reputation for academic excellence and it is good to see that its deep Christian spirit pervades the whole school."