Invocation by Robert M. Randolph, MIT senior associate dean for students and affiliate minister at Harvard University's Memorial Church, given at MIT's 138th Commencement exercises, June 4, 2004
Known by many names
heard in many voices,
we invoke your presence with us this day.
Today we celebrate the accomplishments
of those who receive diplomas
of those who begin new chapters in their lives.
We invoke your blessings upon them.
There are those here who have passed through MIT and seldom looked to right or left.
There are those who have struggled and arrive here today battered and bruised.
Make each mindful, we pray, of what they have accomplished.
Let success mend self-esteem and give perspective to achievement.
Bless as well those who have supported them in their work--
in the classroom, at home and on the way:
teachers who have given of themselves in ways that will only be understood with the passage of time.
families who have sacrificed much.
friends who learned from them and taught them
as only peers can.
We ask special blessings on President Charles Vest and his good wife Rebecca.
They have given much to this institution and we ask that the next chapter in their lives be as successful as their time with us.
We pray for the security of our nation, for the safety of those who defend freedom whoever and wherever they are.
Make us ever mindful of those on whose shoulders we stand
as well as those who follow in our path.
Even as we celebrate accomplishment and transition, may we continue to seek wisdom.
Hear our prayer!