Remsen St. Mary's Class of 2016 celebrate graduation at ceremony

Thursday, June 2, 2016
(Photos contributed)

Graduation on May 22, at St. Mary's began with the RSM band playing Pomp and Circumstance as the graduates marched into St. Mary's gym. Rev. William McCarthy, President of St. Mary's Schools, welcomed all who attended. The National Anthem was played by the band, directed by Ms. Steph Niewohner. Graduate, Breanna Haefs led prayer. The Salutation address was given by Ethan Biezuns. Ethan described his class as crazy and downright chaotic, while still being kind, intelligent, forgiving, and also best friends. He thanked the teachers for providing a faith filled education and a high-five to his parents for sending him to a Catholic school, where his faith was strengthened through Masses, prayer service, prolife activities, and service trips. He proclaimed that the faith of the graduates will be the most important part of their future. He described his dislike of endings as he and his classmates go from the familiar and the comfortable to better times ahead in their own separate ventures in which he wished all his classmates success. Connor Clark gave the Valedictorian Address. He thanked the graduating class and the Remsen St. Mary's students and parents for welcoming him to St. Mary's. Although it was a short stay at RSM, he voiced his appreciation of the opportunities he was able to take advantage of, and the friendships he has made. Mr. Steve Blair, former social studies teacher at RSM was chosen by the graduates to give the Commencement Address. Mr. Blair has spent 29.5 years as a teacher, with the half year spent at RSM to fulfill another teacher's contract. Mr. Blair positioned himself directly in front of the graduates, as if it was the graduates' final class, delivering his advice to the graduates for a successful future. Among his many tidbits of advice for the students was to choose a career that fits their talents and is satisfying work, as this choice will make going to work so pleasurable that it won't feel like work. He also advised them to be a positive employee in whatever job they accept. He encouraged the students to ask questions when they see someone doing a job well, and most of the time they share the strategy they use for being successful at their job. "It is a case where you need to have your ears open and your mouth shut," he mused on the subject of receiving advice. He told the graduates that their family environment, as well as at RSM school, has made it easy for them to practice their faith. He urged the students to keep God in their life. "There will no longer be a parent to tell you to get to Mass or confession." He projected that they would probably no longer be in a school or a work atmosphere that offers Mass or reminds you to attend. He told the graduates "It is now your job to keep God in your life." The graduates received their diplomas and faced the audience as they said their final prayer as a class. After the final processional the graduates formed a receiving line in the cafeteria.