Return to Program and Remarks
The Reverend Douglas McMahon
Interim Director of Campus Ministries and Chaplain
September 2, 2009
O God, "our help in ages past our hope for years to come", we begin this new year giving thanks for your faithfulness to us all these years. As we open this new semester, we celebrate our 50th Academic Year. Over the past decades, so many lives have been changed on this campus. Over the years, thousands of students have gone forth from this campus to make a difference in this world. Thanks be to you, O God.
We gather as many people in one spirit. Continue to draw us together as a community, shaped by our traditions, but always being renewed by faith, hope and love. You, O God, are the foundation for our community of knowledge, wisdom and compassion. As we welcome new students, the Class of 2013, may we learn from one another. Our new students bring to our campus new gifts and experiences that will enrich us and deepen our understanding of our world and our purpose in it.
We also welcome returning students, new friends of this college, new faculty and staff, and we ask for wisdom and courage to fulfill our high calling to educate and mentor students who have been entrusted to the care of the faculty, staff and administration of this college.
On the occasion of this 50th Anniversary, we ask for your blessing on all students, faculty, staff, administration, trustees, friends and supporters of Eckerd College, especially, as we honor, today, those who will be receiving awards for excellence, scholarship, leadership and commitment to the mission of Eckerd College. May our presence here today, along with our prayers, music and words be a symbol of our gratitude for your grace and mercy throughout these past 50 years.
O God, as we gather in the midst of the beauty of blue skies and green palm trees we remember that we are connected to a larger world where there is often injury, injustice, hate, greed, violence and confusion. Continue to strengthen the hearts and sharpen the minds of those who go from this campus to serve, speak out and make a difference in this world. And today, even as many return from a summer of service, help us to learn from what we have experienced. Heal hurts and help us understand what we have seen and heard. May these experiences enrich both our individual lives and our campus community.
O God of hopes and dreams, of courage, knowledge, mystery and love. Hear our prayer, we ask, in your strong name. Thanks, and glory, be to you, O God. Amen.