In spite of pandemic, economic turmoil, and untold hardship, God’s time marches relentlessly on–  sometimes at what seems like a breath-taking pace.

            In the blink of an eye, the 76th academic year since the founding of PDS is coming to an end, as students and teachers wind up another year of education for God’s young disciples.  The ceremony to celebrate this year’s graduating class will be held in the FPC Sanctuary at 9:30 a.m. on Friday, May 14, 2021.  Family and friends are cordially invited to attend this happy event.

            The teachers at PDS can be rightly proud of their efforts this year, in the face of great odds, to maintain a “normal” curriculum for their students.  Facemasks were worn throughout the year, little hands were washed with hand sanitizer every morning as the students entered the building, and classes were kept separate in the school, in the Sanctuary, and on the playground as prudent public health protocols were faithfully (and successfully!) followed to keep everyone free of COVID.

            Still, this is a bitter-sweet time for many, including your pastor.  Everyone who loves children knows the feeling.  We celebrate with joy the growth and continuing maturation of the children as they learn to make their way in God’s beautiful but sometimes dangerous world.  At the same time, we are reluctant to see them grow up so fast.  Teachers cannot help but shed a tear or two as their precious students graduate and go on to the next grade.  This summer, when the education wing falls silent, your pastor will miss the happy commotion of children passing in the halls, of the cute projects and joyful songs they present during Children’s Chapel, of the boisterous greetings whenever we pass one another (“Hi, Pastor Jim!”).

            In the miniature mortar boards and graduation gowns donned by our Kindergarteners this May, and in the bright happy faces of the children who wear them, we are reminded that God is the creator, the redeemer, and the sustainer of life–  life which continues in the promise of the good news brought to us in God’s son, Jesus Christ. 

            God bless the parents who entrust their children to PDS to be educated in the ABC’s of life and the ABC’s of the Christian faith.  God bless the faithful teachers who work tirelessly day after day to teach their students those ABC’s.  God bless the members and friends of First Presbyterian Church who have made it possible, for over seven decades, for PDS to carry out its mission.

            And God bless the PDS graduating class of 2021!  May God continue to surround them with love and protect them from harm.