From Metropolitan-Archbishop Stefan Soroka

As you graduate, a hope-filled prayer is offered for you by your parish priest, the religious sisters, your family members and all of your brothers and sisters in Christ in your parish – and mine – that you realize in your lifetime Jesus’ invitation to enjoy abundant life!  In the Gospel of St. John, Jesus tells us that he came so that you and I might have life and have it “to the full” (Jn 10:10).  You have worked hard and dedicated yourself to accomplishing your educational goals.  You are graduating to yet another challenge in life.  We pray that you will pursue the abundant life offered by Jesus Christ in all that you choose to do in your life!

The Blessed Mother reveals to us the joy of steadfast faith in following the will of our heavenly Father.  She accepted invitations to serve God and responded to successive challenges with much courage and compassion.  When you and I emulate her in our own life by being steadfast in our faith as we respond to life’s daily challenges, we come to realize the presence of Jesus Christ.  When we embrace our challenges and respond with conviction and courage as the Blessed Mother did, we come to realize the enabling presence of Jesus Christ.  We come to taste and celebrate the gifts of abundant life promised to you and to me by Jesus Christ.  Reach out in prayer to our Blessed Mother.  She will help you to journey closer with Jesus Christ to enjoy the abundant life in which you are invited to share.  You may feel a strong call to serve Jesus Christ as his priest, religious monk or sister, or in some special ministry.  Seek the counsel of those who can help you to explore such a happy invitation.  Whatever journey of life you choose, ensure that it helps you to realize the abundant life offered by Jesus Christ.

Many have assisted in helping you to achieve the success of your graduation.  Make it a point to especially visit your Church and to offer thanksgiving to God for those who cared and assisted you in achieving this graduation.  Express your gratitude to those who guided and taught you.   Pray for them. Your celebration of gratitude will bring joy to others and to you.

We join the many people who will rejoice and celebrate with you this happy and meaningful event in your life. We offer our prayers of thanksgiving for you and for your continued success!

God grant you many blessed and happy years, “na mnohaya lita!”

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