The time began with a "hooding" ceremony at Barnett Hall, where we met the professors. The head of the Speech Pathology Dpt. was not able to come because she had the flu, which was disappointing to the students. Elizabeth's roommates were there as well as Jim and Terri, and of course Rebekah, Jim and I. It was good to have a few friends share the time with us.
First we enjoyed a great breakfast planned by the graduates with some homemade goodies made by the professors. Dr. Cochran (the one in the cap and gown) gave a historical account and meaning of the different robes, hoods, etc that are worn at graduation, and then the "hooding" begun. Dr. C. being very short, had a hard time placing the hoods on the girls, who were either tall or wore high heels, but they bent over so the hood could go around their neck and it was thus accomplished. After the ceremony was completed, we took tons of pictures and toured the dpt. We enjoyed seeing where Elizabeth spent much of the last few years and all the great resources available.
The speaker at the graduation was ex US Attorney General John Ashcroft. He marched with the President of the college, as well as other professors and all the graduates. It was fun to see Jim saying "Hi John" and have him leave the march and come to shake hands with him. He seems to be a Christian from what we have observed and is a kind man. He was probably also happy to have someone on his side as there were demonstrations against his coming and receiving an honorary degree.
Well, lastly they all went into the stadium and amongst great excitement received their degrees. You can be part of it by listening to the video clip.The picture on the right shows Elizabeth and her good friend Lisa Castillo from Colombia who received her BA.
Graduations always make me think of the passage of time and the end of a quest. In the midst of raising kids, working or studying, it seems that it will never end, that things will be always as they are then. Sometimes during wonderful times it is easy to forget that hard times may be around the corner, and when we are going through hard times it seems they will never end. However, things don't remain the same and at the appointed time the degrees are given or withheld, the honor cords are worn or not offered, your name is called if you made it or perhaps you wonder if only... (Do not mean this only about college) If our names are written in heaven by the work on the cross of Jesus, then the time will come when our names are called, abundant entry given , and we hear the words "Well done, you good and faithful servant". He has accomplished the work, the A is given by the Father, our righteousness is given to us. What undeserved grace.
Congratulations Elizabeth Ann Gates BA MA, may the Lord bless the years to come and the new chapters ahead !!