Many of our young people are graduating from either high school or college this spring. It’s filled with many emotions. There’s satisfaction in having accomplished one’s goal and achieved success. There’s gratitude for the many people who have been a support along the way, people who have helped in the learning and growth process – teachers, coaches, parents among others. There’s some sadness at leaving the familiar surroundings, the friends made at school, and the extracurricular activities enjoyed these past few years. There’s the excitement at the prospect of new beginnings and opportunities ahead. And, there’s some anxiety over the uncertainty of what it will be like and how things will turn out. Change is not easy. Still, it is a natural part of every stage in life.
Times like these are most conducive for personal reflection and prayer. Invite the young graduates in your life to take advantage of this opportunity. Suggest that they look back, and see where God has been present even in the challenges as well as the triumphs. Ask them how those memories make them feel. Share how you marvel at the evidence of their growth and development over time, and point out some of the ways you have witnessed God’s faithfulness and love for them. Then, invite them to look ahead. In the midst of the excitement and anticipation of new beginnings, suggest that they invite the Holy Spirit to enlighten, inspire and guide them as they look with hope to the future.
We extend our congratulations to all our graduates. May they be blessed with God’s grace, peace and protection as they begin a new chapter in their lives. I share with you a prayer for those graduating which I came across a while ago in a parish bulletin from St. Ignatius Church in Hickory, Maryland. You might pass this along to a graduate you know.
Father, I’ve been blessed with knowledge. Please show me how to use this knowledge to make the world I live in a little better place. I want so much to make life with its problems a little easier to face. Grant me faith and courage, and put purpose in my days. Show me, please, how to serve you in effective ways. I pray my education, my knowledge and my skill may find their true fulfillment as I learn to do Your will. And may I be aware, in everything I do, that knowledge comes from learning and Wisdom comes from You! All this I ask through Christ the Lord. Amen.
God bless you!
Fr. BobBACK TO LIST