Peter Larsen photo/SJHS

Grad Service Held at Trinity Church

by Ms Marijke Blok - Monday, June 16, 2008

As SJHS has come to expect, Ms. Kristoffersen and Ms. Gallagher and the musical geniuses of our school have presented a beautiful spiritual closing for the Class of 2008.

The service, presided over by Archdeacon Stuart Allan at Trinity Church, celebrated the diversity of our academic community and the gratitude of both faculty and students for another productive year, and the achievements of our graduating class. As always the wonderful blend of music, both traditional and modern, complemented the readings, prayers, and reflections offered by our school's various faith communities, including Christianity, Islam, and Judaism. A Chinese Proverb offered the advice that the spiritual beauty of each individual, when combined, can create a harmonious and peaceful world.

A highlight of the celebration was the moving Blessing of the Light, which reminds us of our connectivity in sharing the Light of the many gifts we have been given.

Among the new music presented by the concert choir and 150 were a stirring rendition of Living in a Holy City, accompanied by congas and rhythmic clapping, a beautifully harmonized version of Only Time, and The Prayer, lifted by the marvellous voices of Owen McCausland and Kirsten LeBlanc.
This year's Graduation Church Service was particularly moving and poignant, because the first Agape award was presented by Mr. Barry Harbinson to Sean Levesque, a Bosun in the Naval Reserve who will be entering the Regular Forces before graduation night. Mr Harbinson complimented Sean on the qualities he shares with Private David Greenslade, in whose memory and honour the award was given.

The Baccalaureate address was delivered fittingly by Padre Malcolm D. Berry, Chaplain at CFB Gagetown, and David Greenslade's Chaplain in Afghanistan. He reminded us all of the importance of making good use of our time, urging the graduates in particular to "seek wisdom, rather than knowledge," and to "live, rather than merely exist." Padre Berry emphasized two key points: "Remember to be modest" and "Go beyond self-interest. The more we give of ourselves, the happier we are."

We are all thankful for the giving spirit of the Graduation Class advisers, the parishioners of Trinity Church and Archdeacon Allan, the SJHS String Ensemble, and their conductor, Bob McCausland, and as always, the talented Greyhounds, who, under the direction of Ms. Kristoffersen and Ms. Gallagher made the Baccalaureate Service a wonderful experience.

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