Sometimes graduation is referred to as a commencement. We usually understand commencement to mean the beginning of something new, a new set of conditions to live and act upon. If you think about it, you can't get to something new until you let go of something old. There in lies our understanding - a moment of time between the "before" and the "after" of an event. Right now - we are in the state of "before" the actual graduation. In a few short days we will be certified as the graduating class of 2004, then it will be "after" the graduation. We will together cross a moment in time in which we will leave high school and step into the big bad world. However, what makes this time enjoyable isn't the destination, but the journey itself. Our focus should not be on the post graduation celebrations but rather on experiencing the significant and splendid nature of the moment.
I know some of you are nostalgic today and filled with excitement and perhaps uncertainty at what the future holds. Which makes me wonder: What piece of wisdom can I steal from one of the great theologians of the world that will somehow ease your transition from high school into the real world?
Ferris Beuller's Day Off is a teen comedy made in 1986. In the film Ferris, played by Matthew Broderick, is just a month of graduating high school - a position not un-similar to our own. There is a motto that Ferris lives by, the line became quite famous and coincidentally applies to all of us here today, even you Miss Cantle. The line is: "Life moves pretty fast sometimes. If you don't stop and look around once in a while, you might miss it."
18 years on and those...