Good evening, Parents, teachers, honoured guests, and fellow classmates.
Change is inevitable for everyone.
For the grade 8 graduating class of 2001, all areas of our lives are about to change.
All our lives are filled with challenges in all areas, and we must begin to take control of our futures.
We are about to begin a new educational journey in high school and so we reflect on the journey we have had through elementary school.
We are all on a journey, consisting of many different phases.As we gather here tonight, it is with the knowledge that we have completed a major phase in our lives, and that we are about to embark on a new voyage.
The change is inevitable, what is not inevitable is how we choose to handle it.
Change for us began in September 2000, when we were expected to become the leaders of St Michaels. All of a sudden we were the oldest and the most mature students in the school.
We have been through many things together, school dances, confirmation, crazy hair days, and a most memorable trip to Quebec.
Through our confirmation preparation we learned to take responsibility for ourselves as young catholic students, and when we were confirmed, we received the 7 gifts of the sacrament. These gifts will help us to shape our futures. During our retreat at our church we learned to communicate with each other in a very positive way.
We all enjoyed our weekly confirmation preparation and it brought us all closer together.
In grade 7, we had a very enjoyable trip to Quebec City. We saw many beautiful sights and learned a lot of historical facts about this amazing city. I am sure that for many of us, we will never forget the 9 hour bus ride there and back and that we will always have as fond memories of that, as we do of the wonderful city.
We have enjoyed so many different theme days in the school and in our class. Remember pajamas day, when a certain boy in our class came to school in a woman's nightgown and a wig with hair curlers? If you forget who you are, Mike James we have pictures!
We have had so many extra curricular activities through the year to be grateful for. From school and class dances, to the French Cafe where we actually were the waiters and waitresses and all the concerts and sports activities in which we participated.
The sports teams all enjoyed excellent records of sportsmanship and enjoyment which of course, is better than any record of wins and losses. We have enjoyed every minute of these activities, and we have learned to respect and appreciate our teachers, our coaches and our teammates.
This grade 8 year has passed by as the fastest of our academic years. We have learned to take care of each other and to respect each other's feelings. It has become apparent to us not to waste one minute of one day, in school as in life.
We have been given, and will continue to be given by our school system, the necessary tools and training to help us to become skilled, creative and flexible adults of the future. We all have within our grasp the capacity to adapt to the changes we will face in life.
Someone once said:
" For a long time, it had seemed to me that life was about to begin, real life, But there was always some obstacle in the way, something to be gotten through first, some unfinished business, then life would begin. At last it dawned on me that these obstacles WERE my life." (Alfred D Souza)
If we can remember this and always enjoy the journey we are on we will not be reaching for the destination only. We must all remember to live each day to the fullest, in all that we do.
Life is a long, winding path with many twists and turns. Along the way, there are numerous forks in the road- each leading in a new direction, with many possibilities ahead.
When we are confronted with decisions about which way to turn, we can reflected upon the lessons that we have learned, and the experiences that we have shared over these past years, and they will guide us in the right direction.
To all the teachers and parents who have helped us to prepare for the changes and journeys we are about to take, we want to let you know how much you have taught us and how greatly we appreciate your help.
Our past teachers and principals, Miss Nanni, Ms. McRae, Ms.Lowartz and Mr.Hendrickse and all our previous teachers, we thank you.
Our sincerest thanks go to our Principal, Mr. Overholt, who arrived at St Michaels this year and has been a great influence on all of us.
To Mademoiselle Pirruccio and Ms massey, our french and science teachers, merci beaucoup, bonne chance et aura vol.
To all the teaching staff, school support staff, Father John , Father Ted and Mrs. Fitzpatrick,we will always be indebted to you for all your help and support in our school and in our private lives.
To our teacher, Mr. Hawken, words cannot express what you have done for our class. We are so fortunate to have been taught by you. You were there for all of us, each and every day, passing on your wisdom and knowledge. You have treated all of us with such compassion and understanding and shown us clearly your dedication as a teacher. You have prepared us not only for high school but for the rest of our lives.
And now we go forward, with our cherished memories and step boldly into the future.
We are ready, and we will be successful. ThankYou.