Message from the chaplain - 3 August 2018

From 22 to 27 July, I was privileged to attend the annual National Independent Schools Chaplains’ Conference (NISCC), hosted by the KwaZulu-Natal chaplains and schools in the Midlands. The conference is a time of fellowship, rest and restoration for the chaplains, who come from Anglican, Methodist, Lutheran, Roman Catholic, and non-denominational schools and backgrounds. We were treated to zip-lining in Karkloof, a talk on and an opportunity for healing prayer, a retreat day in Hilton College’s game reserve, and each night one of the schools in the area hosted us for a meal. In connecting with other chaplains, we gain a sense of common issues with which we are faced, as well as creative ideas for our own schools. Each day, we listened to speakers on topics such as “Looking after Generation Z”, “Resilience”, and a talk on creating spaces for ourselves and for the girls and boys in our schools to find their identities in Christ, called “the Cathedral spaces of childhood”. We were honoured to listen to the Revd Canon Alan Smedley, chaplain to Michaelhouse for 25 years this year, reflect on his time as chaplain and impart what he has learnt of chaplaincy to us.

I have come away from the NISCC 2018 feeling rejuvenated and with a sense of community with my fellow chaplains across the country. I also have a renewed sense of the incredible blessing it is to work as a chaplain in schools such as ours, and am inspired to reflect further on my own approach to chaplaincy and to implement some of what I have learnt.

Revd Claudia Coustas

Chaplains from around the country attending the NISCC 2018 in KwaZulu-Natal