Christian Prayer by Hayley Cohen '12
Beloved, if you are so inclined, please pray with me:
We thank you for our time at Dickinson, for the friends we have made, professors who have become our mentors, valuable lessons we have learned in and out of the classroom, the late nights we have spent studying, the fun we have had, and especially, for the memories we have made.
You have created us in your image and called us as your own, therefore we have worth.
You have given us gifts and talents, therefore we have calling to use them.
You have made us the light of the earth, therefore we must shine in this world like stars among the darkness.
Teach us to use the knowledge and skills we have learned at Dickinson to further your Kingdom, making every place we go better by helping those around us and spreading your love and forgiveness.
Teach us to be grateful for the time we’ve had here and let us give thanks always for those around us who have helped us through the process; especially our families.
Teach us to use what we’ve learned to never stop searching to create a better world.
In all that we do from this weekend on, help us remember your guiding Holy Spirit. Let it be the spark inside of all us that urges us on towards love and good deeds in this world. Let us not forget all the beautiful lessons of love and forgiveness that Christ has taught us. Let us do justice, love kindness, and walk humbly with you now and forever.
In Your Holy and Eternal Name we pray, Amen.
Hindu Blessing by Pallai Mehra '12
Hindu New Year or Diwali is on the 17th of November this year. Diwali also known as the Festival of Lights, is the celebration of the victory of good over evil and light over darkness. The day is picked based on the Hindu Luni-Solar calendar (according to the positions of the sun and the moon). It is a day of giving thanks and celebration for Hindu families around the world. Families come together to pray, eat and celebrate their achievements of the previous year and give thanks for the year ahead.
My Diwali came a little early this year. It is time to celebrate and thank my family at Dickinson. This weekend is not an end, it is a new beginning. I thank all of you here today for being a part of this celebration. It is time to thank our families at Dickinson.
To our professors, thank you for being our guides, role models and most importantly our friends.
To our classmates and friends, thank you for being our families for the past 4 years and being a part of this journey.
To all the families present here today, thank you for being a part of this celebration. It would not be the same without you.
Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!
Now that the thanks are done, lets celebrate! Congratulations and Happy Graduation to the class of 2012!
Jewish Blesing by Zara Feingold '12
This Shabbat, Jews read the section of the Torah in which God commands the Israelites to rest their land every seven years. The Hebrew word for this sabbatical, Shmitah, literally translates to “release” or “non-attachment”. Every seven years, the farmers are released from their work, and the Earth is released from human exploitation. The shmitah represents completion. Every seven years, Jews are commanded to rest and to reflect upon their accomplishments as a community. The schmitah is a time of conclusion, and it is also a time of rebirth. When not farming, the Israelites had the energy to create new plans. In that sense, the shmitah is a time of great potential. Perhaps most important, the Shmitah is a time of thankfulness. Jews thank God for their harvest, and they thank each other for their collective work. They accept that no harvest is perfect, but instead represents imperfect acts of love and diligence and community. The Israelites thank God for the seasons and for the bittersweet passing of time.
If graduation is our schmitah, then I would like to say a prayer of thankfulness for my fellow classmates. Thank you for your friendship, for your acceptance, and for your laughter. Thank you for working with me to create a community and for being there with me while I finished growing up. Thank you to our professors for a truly outstanding education. Thank you for your absolute commitment to your students. Thank you for helping us to understand when we were wrong, and for allowing us to know our potential. I say a prayer of thankfulness for every professor sitting here today because each one works to make Dickinson an exceptional institution. I am still in awe of your intellect.
Finally, I say a prayer of thankfulness to our families. Thank you for supporting us and for helping us to achieve our goals
Barukh atah Adonai Eloheinu melekh ha'olam, she'hehiyanu v'kiy'manu v'higi'anu la‑z'man ha‑ze.
Blessed are You, O God, for giving us life, sustaining us and allowing us to reach this joyous time.