(Prayer offered on the Public Address system for the entire La Salle Academy educational community on Tuesday afternoon, 23 May 2017)
Let us remember that we are in the presence of a loving God.
Our Senior year, and especially these past few weeks at La Salle Academy, have been filled with lasts: Our last first day of school. Our last Beehive tailgate. Our last home football game. Our last theater production. Our last touchdown, goal, race, or three pointer. Our last day sitting at lunch with friends. Our last time hearing, “Good Evening, this is Mr. Kavanagh calling from La Salle Academy.” Our last run in with Mr. McGinn. And this, class of 2017, family of 2017, our final school day, together, at the A.
It is overwhelming to dwell on these lasts, and to think that our time at La Salle is ending. As soon-to-be graduates, it is important that we focus on the firsts we encountered throughout high school and all the memories these accounted for.
Dr. Seuss once said, “Don’t cry because it’s over. Smile because it happened.”
Today we smile because of our firsts: Our first day of school, and experiencing the tradition that is La Salle. Our first Clash of the Classes, and being introduced to the zeal and energy that exists in this community, the palpable school spirit that permeates our hallways. Our first time being exposed to the mission of the Lasallian schools and recognizing our call to serve others. Our first time experiencing the La Salle education, something that is far more extensive than the beautiful campus at 612 Academy Avenue (being part of La Salle means being part of a global community of over 1000 schools in more than 80 countries. Our staff and administrators are among the 90,000 men and women who minister the La Salle education to the next generation of leaders, innovators, and difference-makers. An integral part of the Lasallian education is exercising a preferential option for the poor.) We smile at the memory of our first day going out on Christian service, anxious, nervous, unaware of the challenges and joys that lie ahead. We smile at the memory of our first day being on a mission trip, the formation of bonds with former strangers and engaging in the worlds of people whom most students only read about. We smile because it happened!
So, on this day of firsts and lasts, ends and beginnings, bitter and sweet, we smile. We smile because it happened. Because it happened at La Salle. It happened with remarkable teachers and coaches. It happened with the coolest, most compassionate dean of all time. It happened with supportive families who sacrificed for us. It happened with late nights, early mornings, blizzards, hurricanes, and heat-waves. It happened with laughter. It happened with stress. It happened with tears. Nonetheless, it happened. And for that, we smile.
Let us pray,
Lord, we have been blessed to attend La Salle Academy, a place that has taught us a great deal about how to live compassionately and with zeal. Help us to use what we have learned in all of our life endeavors, and to look back on our time here with gratitude, with fondness, and with a smile.
God Bless the class of 2017.
God Bless The Academy.
Saint John Baptist de La Salle, Pray for us!
Live Jesus in our hearts, Forever!
Jack Hogan–Class of 2017