Saturday, August 4, 2012

Invocation for UGA Summer Commencement 2012

We are gathered here
and to make our gathering proper we must give thanks

We give thanks
for the air we breathe
and in breathing share in the spirit of all living things

for the rain and water we drink
and in drinking are joined to the very beginnings of life

for the light we see
and in seeing . . . know and are known

for the earth, this fragile earth our island home,
where we live and move and have our being.

We give thanks
for the generations before us
for this generation around us
for the generations who will follow us

We give thanks
for bestowed on them is
a wisdom that is awesome
It protects us and astounds us
an imagination that is powerful
It excites us and moves us
a hope that is everlasting
It inspires us and does not disappoint us.
a love that is transcendent
It nurtures us and embraces us
a calling to sacrifice that is holy
It honors us and sets us free.

We give thanks
and pray in celebration
for our colleagues
for our professors
for our regents, administrators and staff
for our family and friends
for taxpayers and lottery players
for all those who have supported our studies

We pray in celebration and we sing a new song
for Classrooms and labs,
with their loud boiling test tubes,
for Athletes and bands
with crowds of cheering people

We sing a new song
but it is not only we who sing.

our hymn is joined to the praises heard in
the hum of background radiation as old as the universe
the buzz of insects skipping from plant to plant
the whirr of hard drives backing up our data
the squeak of sneakers on a gymnasium floor
the honk and grind of gameday traffic
the shouts and applause of a stadium in victory
the very words spoken from this podium today

We sing a new song
We pray in celebration
and we give thanks.


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