Blessed are you, Lord God,

Creator of body and mind and heart.

You have sent the Spirit of wisdom and knowledge

to guide your people in all their ways.

At the beginning of this new school year,

in this time of uncertainty and anxiety,

we implore your mercy.

Bless and protect our students, teachers,

staffs, their families, and especially the lonely.

Give wisdom to the decision makers,

be they in our schools or in our homes.

Expand the horizons of our minds,

and deepen our commitment to seek

the truth of your ways.

Enliven our faith to reach out to those in need,

particularly those isolated and lonely.

In these days when so much has changed,

help us to trust in the love of your Son Jesus,

our Divine Teacher, who is the same

yesterday, today, and forever.

Amen.

(This prayer is from a Google search of ‘new school year prayer’)

 

Ever since I can remember, I have loved school, just loved it. My earliest memory is my father walking me to kindergarten in my new blue dress (my best friend’s mom Mrs. Gibbons had given me as a gift) and my new patent leather shoes. That week my new little sister Eileen, had been born and I was filled to the brim with happiness and excitement skipping along beside my dad. We had to take 1-2 buses to get to school (he eventually started taking me in a cab, such New Yorkers!) and that feeling of happiness about school continued to law school and beyond.

I went to Catholic school throughout my life and God was central to that experience. We prayed every day and said the pledge of allegiance every day. It was a simply beautiful childhood because school and church gave me the stability that I did not have at home.

As an adult I treasured getting the boys ready for school. I loved the new shoes, new uniforms, new notebooks and pens, the new fresh scent of a new year. In a blink of an eye, they are adults and celebrating their own life journeys with new wives and new fiancé and new baby. I so miss all of it. And I know there are so many of you who miss it as well.

And I know so many of you who feel lonely because the summer is over and your families are on to their lives, and I know there are some of you who have dropped off your youngest at college and you are truly the empty nest and that makes you sad and I know there are some of you who are dropping your oldest off at nursery school in two weeks and that makes you sad and I know that some of you are lonely, just lonely because everyone in your life is gone. You are totally alone.

So, I want you to know, you are NOT alone. God is with you every single step of the way. It doesn’t mean life is complicated and stressful and just plain sad. He knows that and He has experienced that firsthand.

I want September to be a new beginning for all of us. Find the class, join the Seniors, volunteer, come to Church, join the needlepoint group, go to the library, join the choir, volunteer, and pray, pray, pray.

This new school year is for all of us… single, widow/widower, just starting out, new parent, old parent (sorry but that is true, lol), empty nester, senior (and the list goes on). Join, try out new things, and pray. And know that God so loves us.

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!