Father Mark Smith is our Chaplain and he is a full-time member of staff who lives with his family on the school campus. The Chaplaincy is regarded as a vital touchstone for everything that happens at King's and, as a Woodard School, the role of the Chaplain is an incarnational one - reminding the school community of the loving presence of God permeating all we do.
The Chaplain teaches all pupils for at least three years and interacts with them formally and informally in a wide range of other ways. Some examples include:
- Confirmation classes
- Leading our membership of Citizens UK, providing training in community organising for staff and pupils
- Friday afternoons working in the school mini-farm which is run by the Chaplain
- The Philosothon – a philosophy competition discussing the 'big' questions
- Mindfulness meditation practice
- The Year Group Forum
- Individual counselling
King's College Chapel is primarily a place of worship for the whole school community. However it is also the finest concert venue in Taunton, seating up to 400, with excellent acoustics for the performers. We also have a theatre complex that houses the theatre, conference room and additional areas for lessons and meetings.
The Chaplain is also responsible for all chapel services. There is a weekly Eucharist for the whole school community, a Friday morning reflection, and evening prayer in the St. Francis chapel on Sundays. During the year there are special services in our chapel like the Confirmation, Remembrance Sunday, Leavers' Eucharist, two Carol Services and Christmas morning Eucharist.
Father Mark is always available for any member of the community, with weddings and baptisms common at King's College. He can be contacted on tel: 01823 328211 or by email: firstname.lastname@example.org
St Francis Mini-Farm
The mini chapel in the farm is dedicated to Saint Francis, the patron saint of the environment and is used for Meditation on Sunday evenings. It began with Father Mark rescuing five hens from a battery farm in North Devon.
The mini-farm has included many animals including pygmy goats, alpacas, Netherland dwarf rabbits, ducks and various exotic birds. We even had guinea-fowl at one point – but that's a long story...
The farm is now exclusively devoted to growing food.
A Fourth Form activity group helps with maintenance, weeding the vegetable garden and other maintenance tasks around the farm. The children from the King's Schools community and beyond visit the farm often. It gives them the opportunity to learn and provides a quiet place in which to enjoy God's generous creation.