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London bomb blasts

To provide a response to the bomb incidents in London on Thursday, 7 July 2005

Suitable for Key Stage 2

Aims

To provide a response to the bomb incidents in London on Thursday, 7 July 2005.

Preparation and materials

  • Care and sensitivity will be needed, since anyone from anywhere in the UK, or beyond, could be affected or know someone affected by these events.
  • Please note that, in order to post this assembly as rapidly as possible it is being written as the news is breaking and while the facts are uncertain. Please update the information accordingly.
  • If someone known to the school has died in the tragedy, please see our assembly A death associated with the school community although you will probably want to respond to this at a later time once the original shock has passed.

Assembly

  1. Sensitively recap the events in London on Thursday, 7 July 2005.

  2. Emphasize the responses of people to these events – emergency services on hand quickly, very little panic from ordinary people, underground services suspended to prevent further atrocities.

  3. Although it is not certain at the time of writing, it seems highly likely that these were coordinated explosions set off by terrorists. Ask – why did it happen? Explain that although we don’t know exactly who did this, it was caused by terrorists – people who can’t get what they want by normal means so they seek to hurt and kill people. We don’t know what they want or what point they are trying to make, but we do know that the people they have killed were just ordinary people.
  4. Ask for a minute’s silence to think about all those who have died and those who loved them; and those who are injured.

  5. Introduce and read this paraphrase of part of Psalm 102.

    Introduction

    When terrible things happen it can help to remember that people throughout the ages have suffered terribly but have still managed to recover. This old poem (Psalm) from the Bible was written about three thousand years ago. Sometimes it just helps to know that other people have been through the same sort of experience and felt the same kind of things. Ask the children to think of the people involved while they listen.

    Hear my prayer, O Lord,
    O lord hear my cry.
    Do not hide from me, O Lord,
    Hear me and answer me, I pray.

    My days are grey and sad like smoke,
    My bones hurt,
    My heart is sad,
    I don’t want to eat,
    I can’t do anything.

    I feel so sad, so lonely:
    I am like a little bird that pecks around a wasteland:
    Nothing to eat, nothing to drink,
    A shadow is over all my life.

    But, whatever, you’re still God,
    You go on and on and you don’t change.
    Things will change for me,
    They will get better.
    Like the sun you will rise and help me,
    I know you will.

Time for reflection

Reflection

Think again of the people killed and injured in these terrible events…

Now think also of all the people who responded calmly and sensibly, determined that terrorists will not get their way…

Think about all the people who risk their lives to help the victims – police, army, doctors, nurses and hospital staff.

Terrorists want to hurt and kill people so that the rest of us will be afraid. What do you say to that?

Prayer

Dear God,

We pray for all those hurt and killed in the London bomb blasts and the people who love them. Please help them to be strong and help us not to give in to fear which is what the terrorists want.

We pray that people everywhere will learn to give up war and terrorism and seek peace.

Amen.

Publication date: January 2005   (Vol.7 No.1)    Published by SPCK, London, UK.
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