Editor’s note: During Sunday night’s prayer service at Christ the King Chapel, intercessions were offered for the soul of Jenni-Lyn Watson and concern for her family.
A prayer for Mercyhurst College’s football program, which is currently on an NCAA playoff run, was also offered. Some students viewed it as a non sequitur amid the vigil’s somber tone.
Vice President for Student Life Dr. Gerard Tobin offers his explanation and apologies to those offended.
This is what I had intended, though I do not think it worked.
Life is complex. When people are dying, others are being born. A mom is diagnosed with a fatal illness and a young couple is falling in love.
Dave Matthews sings, “Funny the way it seems, if you think about it, somebody’s going hungry and someone else is eating out. Funny the way it is, not right or wrong, somebody’s heart is broken and it becomes your favorite song.”
What I had hoped we could communicate was that while we are at once mourning the tragic death of Jenni-Lyn, a whole group of our student athletes and coaches have just accomplished a feat we had never achieved in our history.
So our challenge is to acknowledge and celebrate this achievement in the midst of our great sadness.
In a short prayer, I don’t think we affectively communicated the essence of this message.
I apologize to those I offended. Please know, it was not my intent.