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SHHS 2010 Valedictory Address

Good afternoon Reverend Fathers, Reverend Sisters, School Board Members, Hounoured Guests, Teachers, Staff, Families, Friends and Fellow Graduates.
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Good afternoon Reverend Fathers, Reverend Sisters, School Board Members, Hounoured Guests, Teachers, Staff, Families, Friends and Fellow Graduates. I am so very honoured to have been chosen as the Valedictorian for the graduating class of 2010 and hope that what I express today also expresses what my fellow graduates feel. I first ask us to acknowledge all of those individuals who could not join us to today. Let us keep the friends, family members, and fellow graduates not sitting with us who have been our heroes close to our hearts as we celebrate the events today.

Superheroes. What comes to mind when we think of the characters we only see in the movies or read in the Marvel or DC comic books? Some people may think of masked crusaders, gallivanting around the city in spandex costumes, hunting for justice. Wikipedia defines a superhero as a stock character possessing extraordinary or superhuman powers and dedicated to protecting the public. If I have learned anything from the thirteen years of education I have learned that superheroes are not just contained to the pages of the comic books, but surround us in everyday life, even here in good ol' Yorkton. There are only minor differences in the superheroes we see on the big screen to the superheroes who sit beside us, inspiring us to always take moral action. It is at this time of graduation that we can recognize the fantastic abilities that our friends, family, and community possess and have passed on to us who are venturing out to pursuethe paths of higher education, travel, or just hanging out in our parents' basement. Whatever the choice may be, we are forever grateful for the unending support, guidance and love we have received throughout our lifetimes. Thank you to the Christ the Teacher Catholic School board who have furnished us with the skills and opportunity to be standing here, proudly holding the scrolls in our hands. Not only have we acquired the knowledge and lessons to be successful in furthering a career, but we have been able to envelop all the valuable information while standing on a Christian foundation.We have been given the opportunity to learn what we need to learn while also learning about the morals and values important to a Christian lifestyle. We as students can now base decisions that we face on the knowledge of the mind and the knowledge of the soul. Thank you very much to the Sister Servants of Mary Immaculate for beginning the journey, for enriching us and giving us the tools to be moral beings in our society while also developing a love for God.

To the Graduating Class of 2010: it is crazy to think the last four years have gone by so quickly. How will we go on without the regular questions and phrases we hear in the hallway everyday such as: Gaming tonight? Do you have any gum? Is it day one or day two? Too many Orems! I will miss thefrustrating days of AP Calculus, and the Trivial Pursuit games where a team of twenty students can still not beat the mind of Mr. Digout. I will miss having birthday cake for our hypothetical birthdays in Physics class every week, and travelling with sports teams for countless tournaments around the province.I'll even miss the constant "trolling" that goes on in the hallways, at drama practices, and in Calculus 30. We have created many fantastic memories, and I am so very glad that I have been able to experience the memories with you all. Congratulations guys! We did it! The dedication and determination we have shown throughout our years have been second to none. I hope that in your time at Sacred Heart you have found a passion to pursue and a greater path to follow while not regretting a single moment. Thank you for being the admirable people you are, and I hope that you find your inner superhero.

To the teachers and Staff of Sacred Heart High School: I have learned lifelong lessons from various coke-drinking, lanyard-swinging, Detroit Red Wing loving teachers that no text book could have ever taught me; lessons that cannot be duplicated, such as: I cannot mark what I do not have. All skirts get dress codes. Danny and Reuven are just friends (wink wink). There are many teachers who have gone astronomical distances past their requirements as educators, and have been a friend for many of us, teaching us not only what the curriculum requires, but what life requires. It is our teachers who truly embody a superhero's motivation to fully uphold a just and humanitarian society at any cost for the good of the students, and without the expectation of any type of reward. It is this fact that makes our teachers so truly extraordinary and extremely inspirational. I truly hope that our teachers may find some reward in knowing that they played one of the largest roles in developing the outstanding individuals that sit here on the stage.

And where would we be without the true heroes of our lives, who wake up with us, hand us our lunches as we head out the door, and wait until we get home late at night to make sure we make it to our beds? These are the people who possess the spectacular power of true sacrifice and are at our sides at every call. Our families are our heroes from day one and continue to be until the end of time, teaching us where to base our values and how to live out our morals. Our siblings are our secret confidents and sidekicks who continually support and encourage our adventures and endeavours. Our parents are the Wonder Womans and the Iron Mans of our lives, always showing us how to achieve the impossible and guard off the villains who try to prevent success. They have been beside us to tie up our capes, and fix our bruises when our leaps over tall buildings fail. Out of all the amazing things our families do, the most important of them all is when they teach us about the strongest weapon we could ever possess: respect. Our families have shown us that all values stem from respect and it is the greatest shield to any attack we will face. Thank you for bearing our tribulations with us as well as our accomplishments. Without your support and confidence our journey would have ended on the first page of our comic book.

As we leave the comfort of the school and community and find out who we truly are, we discover that we no longer get to wear the mask or possess the superhuman strength that our school or home may have let us have. The one skill that is able to stay with us no matter our comfort level, situation, or location is the ability to FLY - F-L-Y - the ability to find leadership in yourself. That's what true superheroes do once the capes are retired and the initial glory is gone. It is what drives us to meld the person we are with the person we want to be into one single being; it is this trait that sets us apart from any fictional character on paper. We do not need to hide behind the thick frames of Clark Kent, nor the reporting position of Peter Parker. We can be the persons who God intended us to be, one being, with our superhuman self and our true self undivided.

I am not a person filled with wisdom, therefore I cannot give you the adequate advice you may need to go out into the world and succeed; however, I can leave you with a few thoughts. A wise man once asked me if I thought I had become a better person because of high school, and at the time all I could think of is how my flaws equally weighed all of my accomplishments. I have discovered, though, that becoming a better person is not about collecting the most trophies or winning the most awards. It is not measured by the costume we wear, the money in our accounts, or the number of friends we have on Facebook. No, our journey to become a better person lies in our experiences and our ability to create our own comic book containing our successes and failures where we define our own superpower and moral code. Graduates, I truly hope that one day you find your calling and realize you do not need a cape or a mask to do extraordinary things. All you need to do is learn how to FLY.

Have a wonderful afternoon and God Bless!