PROVIDENCE — On the evening of Monday, June 10, 88 members of the St. Mary Academy - Bay View Class of 2019 donned white robes and caps, and received their diplomas at the Cathedral of Saints Peter and Paul in Providence. The gathering marked the 143rd commencement ceremony since the academy opened in 1874.
Sister Marybeth Beretta, RSM, academy president, acknowledged that the graduates must be both full of excitement and apprehension at the unknown destinations ahead of them.
“You are not alone,” she said. “The spirit of God is with you on this journey and will bring you comfort.”
Sister Beretta shared that her prayer for the graduates is not only for a successful future, but a prayer that they never lose sight of their moral compass and will remain faithful to the qualities of a Mercy educated woman.
“[I pray] that you will remain a woman of character and integrity as you stand at the threshold of open doors and endless possibly.”
Today, tomorrow and all the years to come, Sister Beretta explained that what will matter more than final grades on their report cards is something from their Bay View education that is unmeasured.
“There are many invaluable qualities that matter much more in life: compassion, empathy, resilience, self-awareness, civicmindedness, courage, forgiveness and humility. Your test of these qualities will be life itself. Your embrace of these qualities will afford you life’s deepest meaning and joy.”
Thinking back to the beginning, Valedictorian Alexandra McDonald recalled the first days of high school, when new students seemed apprehensive and unsure of what their futures might hold. She then thanked all of the loved ones that supported them daily in their educational experience.
“It is without a doubt that we would not be here without the support and love of our parents and family members. ... Through your hard work, sacrifice and unconditional love you have made our education at Bay View possible.”
McDonald shared that whether the graduates choose to become doctors, lawyers, or business women their futures rest on the rock solid foundation built at Bay View.
“As we continue on to the next stages of our lives, we will be faced with many obstacles. Do not shy away from these obstacles. Face them straight on and learn how to overcome them. All of life’s experiences will teach us the lessons we need to have successful lives. Ignore the doubters and don’t let fear of failure stop you from trying, with that there will be nothing you can’t accomplish.”