On Thursday September 13, 2012, the LMU campus celebrated Zero Tolerance Week, hosted by ASLMU and several other departments. The week of events culminated in a march and rally during Convo Hour. Fr. James Erps, S.J., Director of Campus Ministy, was invited to give the invocation. Here is the full text:
Invocation for the Zero Tolerance Rally LMU
September 13, 2012
James D. Erps, S.J.
Director of Campus Ministry
Loving God, we gather today to profess as a community a cornerstone of our belief – that in your eyes, no one is a stranger, no one is foreign, no one is an outcast, no one is an accident, and certainly no one deserves mistreatment. On the contrary, the ancient Scriptures, in Judaism, Islam and in Christianity all speak of your work of creation – and your special work of the creation of humankind. With great generosity, you have made us your sons and daughters and thus we have been from time immemorial – brothers and sisters on this planet.
Sadly, all too often we have forgotten where we have come from and the resulting relationships that endure at the very core of our being.
Today we celebrate the great family of humankind, and all its splendid diversity. We celebrate the many gifts of unique individuals who bless us – bless us with advancement in knowledge, bless us by expanding our horizons in exploration, bless us by making life more meaningful and more livable through the arts. May we never forget that the richness of our human family comes not from our identical way of being but from the variety of lives and talent that the uniqueness of time and place brings about.
We gather today in front of the icon of our University, the Chapel of your Sacred Heart. May the image of your heart always remind us and always challenge us to love. As you have said, "Love one another as I have loved you." May your power and your grace help us set aside all that divides us and any remnants of hate and mistrust – and lead us, day by day, to a new world of love, acceptance and care for one another, our brothers and sisters.