Parting thoughts for our graduates

Dear graduates of high schools, colleges and graduate schools:


You must be wondering what life has in store for you after graduation. Well, I propose that you have these people skills to become the very best you can be at whatever field of endeavor and vocation God is choosing you to follow -- with your academic degree and academic learning, and learning from the Spirit of being compassionate and passionate about life and the people in your life.

THE SKILL OF continuous learning extends from the womb to the tomb. Yes, we never get enough of life's lessons for us to grow in knowledge, wisdom, character, integrity, virtue, happiness, courage, goodness, beauty and heartfelt love and charity. These are all people skills that are developed over the course of one's entire life.

Whatever field of endeavor and ministry and vocation and business you go into, take with you the realization that it is not a solo trip. Life is all about relationships, encounters, experiences, friendships and romantic intentions to have a beloved and marry and start a family. Yes, most of you will go into that very blessed sacrament of God's love by taking on a chosen spouse, partner and companion to face life's joys, loves, passions, pleasures, trips and challenges, as well as the bad, sorrowful and cruel happenings that say that life is not fair or just -- in terms of having a balance of one without tasting the consequences of the cruel discovery that sometimes bad does happen to good people. We all wonder why. God alone knows the mystery to that.

I wish to convey to all parents and graduates that there is a new beginning, hopefulness, energy and promise of something creative, lucrative and fantastic awaiting you beyond graduation if you do have the real leadership desire to excel in your field of business with a real spirit of compassion and passion in your heart.

Yes, there are people whose real love of life and their God-given goal to be their very best in helping and serving others in the world is the best gift you can leave this Earth with. I applaud all parents and graduates whose main goal is to continue to grow in wisdom, knowledge, spiritual holiness, character, integrity and maturity, and be a real leader in the ways of kindness, patience, happiness, virtue and service to their family and friends.

I ENCOURAGE all parents and graduates to keep their heads high as they go for the real God-given calling to pursue a life of an unselfish career to do good, and to become a leader in the world of love and genuine caring.

I encourage all parents and graduates to keep looking for all opportunities to achieve a real benchmark of achievement in being the best you can be, simply for the graciousness of helping others to become their finest selves, in the course of your life's most joyful aspects of living life to the fullest.

(The writer is parochial vicar at the Church of the Most Holy Trinity in Augusta.)