St. Mary’s Church, Eastry

Eastry Church and school have had a close and fruitful connection since the foundation of Eastry Church of England School in 1853.

The history of Eastry Church goes back a lot further, with the building of the present structure having started at the end of the 11th century. Eastry Church will in fact be celebrating its 900th anniversary in 2020 although there was probably an earlier Saxon Church on the site.

Eastry Church has been added to over the years and unbroken Christian worship has continued to this present day.

Links between Church and School in Eastry are as strong today as ever. The church is currently in the process of appointing a new priest who will lead weekly worship and members of the congregation serve on the Governing Body. In return the school regularly visits the Church for services including Christmas, Easter and the School Leavers’ Service, as well as other major festivals.

The clergy participate in and support curricular activities in school which are exploring areas of Church life, for example marriage or baptism, and the school use the Church building as a resource both in their direct learning and in their spiritual, social and cultural development. Visits this year have been limited due to the restrictions associated with Covid-19 but in previous years children across the school attended 'spiritual days’ in Eastry Church exploring prayer stations based upon the senses, and year 6 participated in a pilgrimage to the Church on the Diocesan Day of Prayer and Pilgrimage.

Joys and concerns in both school and church are shared and held in common and mutual support is given to each other’s events.