Posted by: Sam Lucero on May 14, 2009
Here's an update on St. Lawrence Seminary's graduation. The seminary has announced today, May 15, that their private ceremony (only students and faculty) will be available to view live on streaming video. To see WBAY's report on St. Lawrence, go to this link.
While high school seniors eagerly await their graduation ceremonies this spring, one senior class is heartbroken after their graduation was canceled due to the swine flu.
This canceled graduation hit home for me, as my son, Dominic, is a member of the St. Lawrence Seminary High School class of 2009. I received a call from Dominic at noon today, telling me his graduation ceremony, which was to take place after Sunday Mass on May 17, had been canceled.
St. Lawrence is located in Mount Calvary, Wis., about 20 miles east of Fond du Lac. About four young men from the Green Bay Diocese attend school there.
The decision was a very difficult one for the seminary's administration, but after two cases of H1N1 were confirmed this morning, it was the only realistic option. Yesterday, 57 students were experiencing flu symptoms.
Capuchin Fr. Dennis Druggan, rector of St. Lawrence Seminary, sent a note to parents today, updating them on the situation.
"We have been advised that it would be unwise to hold a large public gathering on the Hill due to the fact that some of the students are infected," Fr. Dennis wrote to parents. "To not have a public graduation ceremony is very heartbreaking. I don't believe that there is anything we can reasonably do at this time for the good of all. I will award the students a diploma at a private ceremony tomorrow."
What makes the situation more challenging at St. Lawrence is that the studentbody is made up of young men from around the country, with a handful from outside the U.S. Plans to travel from Detroit, Chicago, New Orleans and other locations, which were made months in advance, now have to be altered. Worst of all, the young men will not have their families with them to witness the reception of their diplomas.
Say a prayer for the 46 seniors from St. Lawrence this weekend. They are a close-knit group and now find their day in the spotlight taken away.
Photo below was taken at St. Lawrence Seminary in 2003.