By Anne Marie Amacher
The Catholic Messenger
DAVENPORT — Students, faculty, staff and family members assembled on the lawn of the Wellness and Recreation Center of St. Ambrose University for Mass and a blessing of the school year Aug. 22. Father Ross Epping, chaplain, celebrated the Mass up the hill from his congregation in front of Christ the King Chapel.
The outdoor evening Mass attracted around 125 people. Father Epping also celebrated a Mass earlier that morning in Christ the King Chapel. At the end of Mass, Father Epping gave a blessing for the new school year.
He prayed, asking God, “for your continued grace and blessing on St. Ambrose University, but most especially upon our students as we begin our new year. May you guide them in learning to trust in their own unique ways of walking with you along their journey.”
“Bless the firsts and the lasts that this year will bring them, the lessons they will learn and the growth it will bring, the study of today and the work of their future.”
“Gift them the courage to follow the spirit with confidence, the spirit of life and love, who longs to lead them to abundant joy and unending communion.”
“Challenge them, in the depths of their soul, to be women and men of truth and of freedom, of peace and of justice.”
“Grant them the wisdom and time to dig deep, to ask questions and to never be satisfied with mediocrity.”
“Let the fire of your love, O Lord, illuminate their path. Let it build up and overflow, so that everywhere they go and to every person they meet, they may be the living, breathing examples of your most perfect love.”
“And may the blessing of God almighty, the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit be with you now and with you always.”