(Prayer offered on the Public Address system for the entire La Salle Academy educational community on Friday morning, 27 October 2017)
On Thursday morning an accident in the neighborhood (lightning strike) destroyed a transformer and caused an electrical outage in the area, including the school. The building was in darkness for more than an hour, except for emergency lights. Students were dismissed early.
Let us remember that we are in the holy presence of a loving God.
So sometimes the lights go out. One second the world is bright and warm, then suddenly it’s not. Perhaps you have experienced this recently. Yesterday when La Salle went dark something very interesting happened, but maybe you didn’t see it, and perhaps you missed something special.
As I walked the hallways of the dimly lit school and peered into classrooms what I saw was, well, illuminating. With cell phone flashlights and white boards, teachers continued to teach. Students huddled around laptops, faces a glow from their screens in cooperative learning. Your deans and administrators ran from floor to floor, room to room, building to building to ensure the safety of our community. One dean stood in the rain to ensure that buses arrived; parents came to the call of their children without hesitation; and, student drivers left the campus, their cars filled with friends in need of a ride home.
You see, the darkness didn’t really stop us. Yes, maybe it ended our day a little early, but it didn’t stop us from learning and could not stop us from caring for one another. And life is like this, our mission as Lasallians is like this, and our faith is like this.
The struggle between light and dark is as old as time itself. God himself drove out the darkness at the beginning of time. Later he would send us his only son to be the light of the world. And just think back to your Civics class and Plato’s Cave.
Darkness can be scary; it is filled with chaos and the unknown. However, no matter how pitch black the darkness can be, there is always a glimmer guiding and urging us to find our way out. And yesterday reminded me how important it is to be that light for one another. In little ways, we were able to show our own sense of goodness, and those little actions lit our school with a glow that required no generator.
So I wonder, are you ready to be the light of the world, as Lasallians and Christians? When the gloom of loneliness and cruelty descends, are you ready to be the light of kindness and friendship for those in need? Where justice is obscured by intolerance, will you be a beacon of hope for those marginalized, abused, and forgotten? When the dusk of hate and violence falls upon us, will you be brave enough to shine a light of love, empathy and compassion, even when it is for your enemy?
And if all seems lost, when it feels as though everyone and everything has abandoned you, will you be wise and faithful enough to know that our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ has never left your side? Walk closely then with him and you will never find yourself in the darkness. And as quickly as the lights sometimes go out, they just as quickly turn back on.
Let us pray,
Our Founder, John Baptist de La Salle said in his Meditations, “In the light of faith you see things quite differently.” Father in heaven, help us to seek out the light of knowledge and love from those in our community. Strengthen us to brighten the path for others who may be lost in the gloom of night. And when all that is left is your grace to hold fast to, be with us oh Lord, our light and our way. No darkness can ever consume us with you at our side.
Saint John Baptist de La Salle…pray for us!
Live Jesus in our hearts…forever!
Brian Ciccone–Social Studies Teacher and Assistant Director of Admissions