A joyous, in-person convocation
Wycliffe College's first in-person convocation since the pandemic began took place May 9, in Sheraton Hall. It was a time to celebrate the Class of '22, and Principal Stephen Andrews described the event as a "historic occasion in many respects." It was, he said, the College's "first—and hopefully only—COVID class."
The gathering marked the first time that some of the graduands had ever met some of their classmates and professors face-to-face. Indeed, one student for whom that was true said the event would become his favourite memory of Wycliffe.
Fifty-three grads crossed our stage and screen during this, the College's 142nd in-person convocation. During his welcoming remarks, Principal Andrews observed that the church and the world are "ever in transition," and that while the same is true of Wycliffe, the College stands ready to meet the challenge of a church and world that still need to hear "the living and abiding word of God."
In her convocation address, world-renowned climate scientist Katharine Hayhoe (who received the degree of Doctor of Sacred Letters (honoris causa) began by citing statistics that pointed to the fact that a majority of people today are worried about climate change. "People don't need more science," she observed, "they need hope."
Reminding the new graduates that fear—which can paralyze us—is not from God, she quoted Scripture, "Love casts out fear."
"Who and what does the world need now?" she asked. "The answer is you."
She concluded her address with a challenge to her listeners that we must act with power, in love, and with a sound mind. "That is exactly what people most need today."