Group of friends

Can you believe that it’s been over a quarter of a century since the world was first introduced to Ross, Rachel, Monica, Chandler, Pheobe and Joey?

Last year, was a big year for Friends. Not only did the show celebrate its twenty fifth anniversary, but it also celebrated being the most streamed programme in the UK, for the second year in a row. Fourteen years after the show finished, viewers in the UK still cannot get enough of the six friends hanging out in Central Perk, and a whole new generation of fans have become obsessed with the show.

It might seem obvious but the popularity of this show, both globally and across generations is undoubtedly due to the fact that it is about a group of friends, which makes it the perfect introduction for our assemblies this month, which focus on friendship.

As part of the assemblies we explore the impact of the show friends with pupils as well as what makes a good friend, and how several famous people have tried to define friendship.

Following on from this, we examine a Biblical approach to friendship and explore passages such as Proverbs 27:9 “A sweet friendship refreshes the soul” (MSG) , Proverbs 17:17, “A friend loves at all times” (NIV) and John 15:13 where Jesus says “Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” (NIV)

We also explore the implications of 1 Corinthians 13:4-8 and ask pupils to consider what it would look like to treat their friends with patience, kindness, or to keep no record of wrongs against them.

Finally, as we think about the theme song of Friends, with the famous line “I’ll be there for you”, we highlight the work of the Bethany Christian Trust by sharing Nadine’s story with pupils. Nadine was sixteen when she found herself homeless and through the work of Bethany, she was able to find a safe, warm and friendly environment to stay, filled with people she knew were there for her.

If you want to see two of the videos we show in the assembly, including Nadine’s story, you can find them below:

I’ll finish this post with the same questions we ask pupils at the end of the assembly…

Who are your friends and how can you show them you’re grateful for them?
How can we make sure that our friendships demonstrate the love of 1 Corinthians 13:4-8, friendships of patience, kindness etc…

Do you know someone who could use a friend right now? How can you be that friend for them?