A closing chapter by Catherine Mullaney (May 21st,2006)
Yesterday we attended a very nice high school graduation of seniors who were educated at home. There were 15 grads and we got to see a glimpse of who each one was through music, speeches, interpretations and of course DVD (the 21st century medium). Each grad received their diploma from his/her Mum and Dad.
It was an honor for us to be invited by 3 of the grads who have become our friends over the last two years.
One of the dad's (not one that we know personally) who is a pastor was slated to give the charge, an exhortation if you will, to graduates. Instead, he was an opportunist - seeing that we were in a church sanctuary he failed to get out of his box and gave a sermon. I have a pretty high tolerance for these kind of things but my son was very agitated and whispered when is this guy going to finish his sermon.
Then I started thinking about what this man was saying and how Michael felt about it. Here were a group of young people most of whom are much more mature than their contemporaries and they are handed an exhortation in the form of a sermon. These are Christian kids who probably here a sermon most Sundays and this weekend they get a double billing.
I guess being a speech and debate mum has made me a little more critical than I use to be. Most of the content was good, but the packaging (delivered as a sermon) was distasteful to me. Perhaps I am old fashion and if you are going to go through all the hard work of cap and gown, procession, wonderful decorations including personal picture collages of each graduate, use of the building, invitation and the like, but you don't hear words from the keynote speaker, that are something along the lines of "you are our future," then perhaps they might want to rethink who it is that will charge your students at the next "traditional graduation" from a non-traditional education.
On a more personal note: It was great to be there and to celebrate with these few families that we have gotten to know over the last two years. Our oldest daughter is not too far away from graduation herself, so the touching moments during the ceremony reached me.
Blessings, prayers and kudos to the Mock, Moore, Morrow families!!