This past Thursday, our school community gathered for the final time this year for the Senior Farewell Mass. This Mass is the final school-wide Mass with the Class of 2016 and it is the first time the seniors wear their graduation robes. This was also the final time we were joined by our superintendent of schools, Fr. John Fortin, OSB, as he is stepping down later this month to return to teaching at Saint Anselm College.
As they did four years ago as freshmen, the seniors processed into the gym with the altar servers and Fr. John. Jason Dufour '16 who has served almost every Mass at Trinity High School since his freshman year proclaimed the first reading and Halle Jones '16 read the prayers of the faithful. Fr. John, as always, preached a brilliant homily and joked that he must be the only priest on my speed dial as he was just there a month or two earlier for Mass.
Following the final prayer, we continued our long tradition of presenting each student with a decorated pillar candle. Each year, the seniors ask a friend to decorate the candle as a memento of their time at Trinity. But, as I mentioned before we passed them out, they are permeant reminders that as they leave Trinity, they are called to bring the light of Christ into the world. I encouraged them to bring the candles with them to college or to put them in a prominent place in their house to always remember Trinity, the person who made the candle, and their call to be the light of Christ.
The final hymn was a song called "Deep Down I Know", a song we normally sing at our Thanksgiving Mass but beloved by the students. The refrain is "Deep down I know, I must praise God, Ohhhh" and the students love belting it out. They started clapping when Mrs. Trachim P'08, '10 started playing the bars to the song on the keyboard.
Following Mass, Mrs. Guerra and Ms. Degulis presented the yearbook dedication which this year went to Mr. Powers '63. Mr. Powers is a fixture at Trinity and was an original teacher at Trinity in 1970. He was a legendary athlete at Bishop Bradley High School and Boston College and coached at Trinity for many years. He left Trinity in the 1970's to work in insurance but returned in 2004 and now works in our athletics office, is our cafeteria monitor, and a substitute teacher. Mr. Powers was very sick earlier this year and many quite frankly thought he might not make it. To see him back and well and receiving this award was very special. He was shocked by the dedication and said he didn't deserve it but the sustained applause by the students said otherwise. He choked up at the end of his remarks which was quite moving.
The morning concluded with a slide-show of the senior class put together by Vicki Fatuski '16 and then a cookout for the seniors. It was a rousing and emotional send-off. Yesterday the celebration continued with a trip to Canobie Lake Park. Final exams for the seniors are next week and our Baccalaureate Mass and commencement at the Monday and Tuesday after that.