May 22, 2011

Graduation Weekend

Posted in Uncategorized tagged , at 10:55 pm by a care in the world

Some days are so emotional and uplifting that you don’t even know where to begin to recount them. My husband graduated from seminary on Saturday, and his family and I spent a proud and exhausting day escorting him from event to event, receiving words of praise and gratitude for him from so many of his friends, professors and co-workers. The Commencement Communion Service in the morning was filled with the interconnectedness that we have come to appreciate so much from this community. Students prepared the entire service, offering gifts of word, song, and communion. Fittingly, the MDivs anointed each other to go forth and do good work, sharing intimate words of encouragement and blessing with one another. It was an incredibly moving experience.

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The Commencement Ceremony later that afternoon began with great noise and jubilation, as bongo drums led the procession of graduates and faculty into the chapel. It was such a small group that I knew most of the graduates, and was proud to witness several of them win awards for their hard work and dedication to sharing the gospel and working for social justice. I was caught off guard but not terribly surprised when my husband’s name was called. In my own words, the award he won was “most capable of translating his seminary work into good for the community through parish ministry.” I’m sure the official phrasing was much more impressive than that, but after some of the struggles we had this spring, I am so proud and so grateful for this particular affirmation. My husband had hoped to be heading into a PhD program at this point, but it wasn’t meant to be, so he followed his calling into ministry, postponing his PhD ambitions for another time. Though it’s been quite a challenge to have to delay that dream, we could not have received better confirmation that he’s on the right track for now. I’m so thrilled and so proud of him.

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As we leave this place behind, we leave a library filled with wisdom and theological challenges, a building draped in history and beauty, and a community of the most fiercely loving people I have ever known. This community believes in love and acceptance above all else, and they fight for social justice, equality and open-mindedness in a way that will always inspire me. It has been an honor to be part of this community, and I know it will feed and support us wherever we go. To all the graduates– may you go forth to bring love, truth and light to all people you encounter. Make us uncomfortable when we need to be uncomfortable, hold us when we need to be held, and challenge us to look beyond our own little worlds so we can create God’s kingdom on earth. And all God’s people said: “Amen!”

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  1. Patti Clark said,

    Beautifully said, sweetheart. I am so proud of YOUR fierce and loving heart! And all God’s people said AMEN.

  2. you know who! said,

    senior who, “in the judgment of the faculty, has demonstrated special ability in relating philosophy, theology and ethics to problems in contemporary society and who shows special promise of so enabling a parish church.” there.

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