Bishop Underscores the Importance of Civility at South Carolina Commencement Ceremony

May 28, 2010


The leader of South Carolina’s Catholic diocese, Most Reverend Robert E. Guglielmone, called upon Saint Leo University’s South Carolina graduates to use their talents to strengthen communities and to foster respect among people in all aspects of life.

The Bishop (pictured) spoke May 15 at Saint Leo’s South Carolina commencement ceremony at the Sumter Opera House. Bishop Guglielmone also received an honorary degree from Saint Leo University President Arthur F. Kirk, Jr. during the event.

While congratulating the 84 degree recipients on their accomplishments, the Bishop eloquently described failings the nation has witnessed recently in discussions concerning national politics and policy, Church governance, and personal advancement in the corporate world.

“One of the issues that I believe needs to be influenced by a newness of perspective and insight in our country is the apparent lessening of respect for the dignity of the person in dealing with differences and the understanding necessary to realize that we are all imperfect human beings,” Bishop Guglielmone said. “In so many cases,” he continued, “we see the complete absence of respect in dealings with one another and sometimes this lack of respect even escalates to rage. Perhaps this milestone in your lives can be an occasion for a commitment to play a part in the restoration of that civility that seems to have been a major part of life in the past.”

The new Saint Leo graduates earned degrees including the Associate of Arts, Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Science, and Master of Business Administration. Most of the new graduates are civilians, but 17 are serving in the U.S. Air Force and two in the U.S. Navy.

The ceremony also included a farewell address from one of the graduating seniors, U.S. Air Force Senior Airman Dorothy Newman, who earned a bachelor’s in criminal justice magna cum laude.

Saint Leo University has educated working adults in South Carolina since 1975 at a continuing education center at Shaw Air Force Base, and since 2008 at a teaching location opened at the Naval Weapons Station Charleston.