The graduating seniors of Mater Dei Prep celebrated on Thursday, May 31, 2018, with a Baccalaureate Mass in Mary, Mother of God Church, followed by the Senior Dinner at Ocean Place Resort and Spa in Long Branch.
Reverend Jeffrey Kegley, Pastor of Saint Mary Parish and Reverend Richard Osborn, Chaplain of Mater Dei Prep, conducted the ceremonial service that marks the students’ final mass together before taking the next step of their educational journey.
Reverend Jeffrey Kegley delivered the homily and encouraged the graduates to always spread the message of hope. “I encourage all our graduates to imitate the life of the Blessed Mother Mary. Things are not always perfect in the world but you are the reason we have hope. Your dedication to your studies and the Lord has filled all of us with hope and we know you will make a difference. We all have seen how you can shine and know all of our graduates can change the darkness into light. You are all fearless and remember to bring the message of hope to others,” said Reverend Jeffrey Kegley.
One hundred and nine seniors participated in the service. Justin Corman welcomed the attendees and presented a tribute to the Class of 2018.
“Our time at Mater Dei Prep has shaped us into the people we are today. Everything we have learned at Mater Dei Prep has prepared us for our future careers and has brought us closer to God. This is not the end but the beginning. We are ready to go out into the world and make a difference thanks to Mater Dei Prep,” said Justin Corman.
The readings were performed by Joseph Ramos and Amanda Yetman with Madeline Brewdelivering the general intercessions. Amanda, Ashley, and Kyle Devaney presented the offertory while Molly Hurst, Griffin Cole, and Nicole Natelli cantored.
To close the service, as part of an annual Mater Dei Prep tradition, Katelyn Grano delivered a beautiful tribute to the parents, thanking them for all their guidance and support over the years. Christina Wuenn sang “You Raise Me Up” during which each member of the Class of 2018 presented a rose to their parents.
Baccalaureate services are held annually to honor the graduating class of Mater Dei Prep. Believed to have originated at the University of Oxford in 1432, the baccalaureate service is a celebration of and thanksgiving for lives dedicated to learning and wisdom.