Rattlers, be proud!

Dear Editor,

The month of June is filled with activities from Fathers’ Day to weddings to the most anticipated of all – graduations.

As the representative of my church, Grace Community Church, which is involved weekly in helping to the shape and mold the spiritual lives of the student population at various schools in its immediate environs, I had the pleasure of attending the commencement ceremony for the Rattlers Class of 2022 on their school grounds under the theme, “The pursuit of excellence continues!”

I wish to commend the principal, Herbert Oembler, and his staff for a wonderful ceremony that will forever be etched in the minds of the graduates.

From the reception I received, to the light schmooze before and after the ceremony with the other specially invited guests ranging from clergy, politicians, permanent secretaries, attorneys and board members, to the beautifully choreographed entrance of the graduates to the sound of Jah Cure’s “Nothing is impossible”, and the melodious pieces by the school band, I was left breathless.

Although I frequented C.I. Gibson’s campus in the past year doing ministry and saw the dedication of the staff, some working well beyond the dismal bell even until dusk, I had never ever attended a graduation exercise at a public institution.

The graduation exercise at C. I. Gibson on Monday, June 20 was testament to synergy at its best with all composite parts intricately woven together to pull off an event of such magnitude and will be talked about for a long time.

The guest speaker, Ranard Henfield, had the graduates and me, for sure, transfixed as he spoke eloquently yet pragmatically to the graduates about the pursuit of excellence. Henfield, a product of the Over-the-hill community, shared his life story of how he pursued excellence despite selling fruits as a boy after school and later working in the dump to finance his tertiary education.

The guest speaker was aptly chosen and I walked away inspired and, indubitably, the graduates did the same.

I was very encouraged to hear the different awards and that they were not all academic but covered a wide range of other achievements – artistic, athletic and aesthetics.

I was particularly pleased to see so many young men ascend the stage to receive awards. This means that there is hope for the future despite the negativity.

Kudos to the principal, graduation committee, and staff, and the graduates for their stellar behavior throughout the ceremony for making a lasting impression on me.

Pastor Carlyle Peart

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