171st Baccalaureate Held at Mount Union

May 13, 2017

Rev. Dr. MacDonaldALLIANCE – “Today is not the end. Your growth and learning will not come to a close when you get that piece of paper with your name on it.”

Those were the words of Rev. Dr. David MacDonald ’99, chaplain at Ohio Northern University, as he spoke to members of the 171st class of seniors at the University of Mount Union began their graduation Saturday at the annual Baccalaureate ceremony, held at 10:30 a.m. in the Peterson Field House on Mount Union’s campus.

The Baccalaureate is a religious sermon given to the graduating class, and precedes the University’s Commencement ceremony.

The service began with a prelude from pianist Jennifer (Grant ’13) Linville and an invocation read by Jewel McCollum ’17, a sociology and criminal justice major from Geneva, New York. 

“Being here today is nothing short of a blessing and a gift,” McCollum said.

The Mount Union Concert Choir, led by Dr. Grant W. Cook III, professor of music and director of choral activities, performed “Psalm 118: Alleluia, This Is The Day!” and “Jubilate Deo” as part of the service.

Seniors Hunter Monroe ’17, Jesse Reed ’17, Willie Swift ’17, Leandra Reed ’17 and Tatianna Carthorn ’17, all participated in leading prayers, hymns and scripture readings throughout the morning.

The sermon given by MacDonald was titled “For God’s Sake, What Are You Doing?” as he spoke about a graduate’s vocational journey and finding “deep gladness” in oneself to find an individual’s true calling. 

“When attending athletic events between our two schools, I always wear a sweatshirt that says, ‘Go United Methodist Universities!’ and my wife and I usually try to sit somewhere neutral to both sides,” said MacDonald, as he and his wife Kelly ’97, are both alumni of Mount Union.

“At Mount Union, I’m sure you have found your deep gladness both in and outside of the classroom,” said MacDonald. “Your vocation is a gift you must use wisely, and it might not always be easy. But I pray that you listen and continue to find your way.” 

Mount Union President, Dick Merriman, led the Class of 2017 in the annual tradition of reading The Senior’s Prayer in unison with the graduates as the service concluded.

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