Today we come together, for the first time this new University year, to renew our goals for the future and unite as a youth community.
As we set out together on this adventure of learning, working and sharing our lives together we ask God to be with us. As we begin what is your personal dream for this year?
What is your dream as students?
What do we have to do together to achieve these dreams?
Louise Con a famous architect said that every brick wants to be something else A high-rise building, A cathedral, set of flats, A beautiful country cottage You can become what you want if you set a target for your personal dreams.
Rodger Banister the first 4 minute miler, once said no one can say how fast you will run or how high you can jump. The human spirit is indomitable.
You are all apart of a great tradition of education in this college.
Each of you can take the brick of your life and turn it into something wonderful.
The French philosopher Jean P, Sarte once wrote ‘Human beings are condemned to be free’.
This is an interesting notion as we begin a new year
We can misuse our freedom
We can waste our study opportunities
We can prevent others from getting on with their studies by messing about in class
We can wake up on exam day and regret our messing
Henry Thoreau writing about life said:
‘I went into the woods because I wished to live deliberately
To confront the facts of life and not find when I came to die I hadn’t lived’.
Think for yourself this year
Forget the group mentality
Make up your own mind
Offer a warm and kind word to a classmate
An outstretched hand to help in times of need
How will we use our education and knowledge over the year?
Who will speak for the poor and broken?
Who will speak for those who are oppressed?
Who will speak so their voice will be heard
Who will speak if we don’t?
Who will speak for the ones who are voiceless?
Speak the truth in places of power
Who will speak for the children of violence?
Who will speak for people abused?
Who will speak for the outcasts?
Who will speak for the people with aids?
Who will speak so their voice will be heard?
Who will offer hope and consolation to the bereaved?
Who will say it’s ok to be sad and to cry, to be confused
Who will work if we don’t?
A Salesian house is a place of awareness for others
So as study and play, work and journey
May we do so in awareness that we are part of a wider Salesian World?
And that real growth and education occur when we reach out from ourselves enriching and blessing the lives of others
We are condemned to freedom
Let us remember this freedom
Let us use this freedom for the betterment of others in Maynooth during the year.