At baccalaureate, clergy tell Albion grads they will always be loved

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 3 June 2024 at 9:19 am

Photos by Tom Rivers

ALBION – Sarah Thom, a member of Albion’s Class of 2024, reads 1 John 3: 1-2 during a baccalaureate service on Sunday evening at the First Baptist Church of Albion.

About 30 seniors attended the service, which is optional. There were 11 local clergy members who participated in the baccalaureate which is organized by the Albion Ministerium. About 180 people attended.

The Rev. Jason Tarnowski, pastor of Community of Hope (Albion Free Methodist Church), gives a prayer of blessing for the graduates.

He asked the students to face the crowd and for family and friends to stretch out a hand to show their support.

In his prayer, Tarnowski asked God “to love, guide and protect these graduates in everything they do. Please watch over them as they move on to new adventures.”

The Rev. Susan Boring, pastor of the Eagle Harbor United Methodist Church, stands with graduates, including Liana Flugel, as they lit candles. The students were told God’s light and love with be with them at all times, even in dark places. Graduates were also offered a cross necklace.

The Rev. Susan Thaine, pastor of the First Presbyterian Church, gives a blessing to Auston Johnson.

Jason Anstey performed a trumpet solo, “The Church’s One Foundation.”

Father Mark Noonan, pastor of a family of Catholic parishes including in Albion, gave the keynote address. He said choosing positive words and encouragement builds strong and confident people.

He told the graduates that no matter what happens in their lives Jesus, the Good Shepherd, will always love them.

“Every one of you is a beloved child of God,” Noonan said. “That defines you more than anything else.”