Jesuits' eloquent juniors

The St Aloysius winning team with the judges
The St Aloysius winning team with the judges

Last week, St Mary’s Hall (SMH) hosted Eloquentes  - the inaugural Jesuit Junior Schools' Year 5 debating competition  - in Theodore House, the recently opened Christian Heritage Centre at Stonyhurst.

Pupils from six Jesuit junior schools took part  in the speeches and debates. Hosts St Mary’s Hall were joined by their friends from St John's Beaumont Windsor, Donhead Prep School Wimbledon, Barlborough Hall School Chesterfield, St Aloysius' Junior School Glasgow and St Joseph's, Hurst Green. Tim, Bebe, James and Hannah (Lower Elements) represented SMH with a prepared speech on the theme of "Curious and Active"from the Jesuit Pupil Profile.  The motions for the debates were: "school uniform should be compulsory", SMH speaking for the motion and SJB against; "every child should learn to play a musical instrument", St Aloysius for and Donhead against and  "every class should have a pet", Barlborough Hall for and St Joseph's against.

Fr Tim Curtis SJ and Mrs Jane Chitnis acted as the guest judges and Mr David Leigh, Head of English at Stonyhurst College was the chair. The judges were impressed by the teams' respectfulness, attentive listening, expression of arguments, vocabulary and eloquence. Along with Barlborough Hall, the SMH team were commended for reflecting best, the virtues of the Jesuit Pupil Profile in their speech and debate.


Film night at Theodore HouseThe children stayed two nights in Theodore House. As well as participating in the speeches and debates, the children relaxed in the Jesuit Gardens, visited St Peter's Church, went for a swim, had a film night and a tour of the Stonyhurst Collections. The visiting staff also enjoyed a supper at the Aspinall Arms.

Congratulations to the team from St Aloysius' Junior School who won the 2019 Jesuit Junior Schools' Year 5 Eloquentes competition.

SMH Lay Chaplain Mrs McCullough said, “We look forward to taking a Lower Elements team from SMH to next year's competition! Thank you to the staff at Theodore House, the domestic and catering teams, our judging panel, the visiting school staff and pupils, and to all who contributed to this wonderful event.”