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Spare a thought

To think about the war-torn parts of the world and to give thanks for what we have.

by Jan Edmunds

Suitable for Key Stage 2


To think about the war-torn parts of the world and to give thanks for what we have.

Preparation and materials

  • This assembly can be taken by the children. Individuals could speak the lines and the last line of each verse could be used for choral speaking.
  • An OHP would allow the audience to share the words.


Speaker 1:  Good morning, everyone. I wonder if we really appreciate just how lucky we are. We live in a country where war is not an everyday occurrence. We take so much for granted. We can feel safe in our homes – yet at this very moment there are people fighting, suffering and dying in places where they cannot agree.

Speaker 2:  We see reports of such things happening on our televisions, but do we ever stop and think that this is real and not some war film where no one really gets hurt? Let us spare a thought today for all those who are suffering in places like Afghanistan, Iraq and parts of Africa.

Speaker 3:  Here in a garden bird song fills the air. Trees and flowers bloom. There is peace all around. We are safe away from it all.

But let us remember, somewhere there’s a war going on.

Speaker 4:  We go about our daily lives, rushing here and there to get things done. Sometimes discontented, irritable, oblivious to others. We can close the curtains and shut out the world.

But we should not forget there’s a war going on.

Speaker 5:  Snug and warm in our comfortable homes, we have plenty to eat and drink. We have our choice of clothes to wear. We are cocooned in comfort.

Yet somewhere there’s a war going on.

Speaker 6:  Someone’s father or mother, someone’s daughter or son, someone’s brother or sister, someone’s husband, wife, partner, neighbour or friend, engaged in mortal combat, perhaps buried in the rubble. They suffer and fight. Why? What for?

Sadly, somewhere there’s a war going on.

Speaker 7:  We are far away from it all. Far removed from the lawlessness and anarchy. We do not see the desperation, disorder, doubt. We do not understand the looting. We cannot hear the cries of pain.

Why, oh why is there a war going on?

Speaker 8:  It’s so easy to shut out the suffering, the strife. We can turn a blind eye and pretend it’s not there. We can shrug our shoulders in the knowledge that we are unable to help. We are powerless.

Spare a thought for today and let us all pray.

That soon there’ll be peace and all wars will cease.

(Some discussion could follow depending on the age of the audience. It could be linked to the National Curriculum work on the First and Second World Wars.)

Time for reflection

For hundreds of years, men and women have waged war over religion, power and territory.

So many people have died unnecessarily in pursuit of their ideals.

Today we think of all those people who are trying to bring peace in places like Afghanistan and Iraq.

We ask God to keep them safe.

We ask that the governments of these countries can have a better understanding of their people

so that a peaceful settlement can be achieved.

God be in our hearts and in our minds, this day and always.



‘We ask that we live and we labour in peace’ (Come and Praise, 146)

‘When I needed a neighbour’ (Come and Praise, 65)

Publication date: November 2009   (Vol.11 No.11)    Published by SPCK, London, UK.
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