(This is the homily for the student’s mass on Wednesday.)
As students we do not always realize what teachers are doing. But we should all know they are teaching us to prepare us for what the next teacher is going to teach us. We have had several teachers this year who were teachers of the month. A few years ago, a man from another school received the honor of being teacher of the year for the nation. His name is Guy Doud. I want to share with you one of his memories that he shared with the president of the United States.
Mr. Doud was teaching students in high school. He said that whenever a student was having problems learning, Mr. Doud would come to school early. He would sit in that student’s desk and offer prayers for that student. He would pray that things at home would be alright. He would pray that the student was safe, had enough to eat, and that people loved him.
One day Mr. Doud was praying for one of his students. He was sitting in the student’s desk when the student came early. Mr. Doud was surprised. This student was always late. Mr. Doud explained he was praying for the student. He asked if everything was alright. The student said he was alright. Mr. Doud remembered that this student played football. And that the next Friday was parent’s night. He asked the student if his parents would walk with him across the field. The student said his parents were divorced and his dad lived too far away, and his mom worked the second shift at the hospital so she would not be able to come. He said he did not know if anyone would walk with him. Mr. Doud said, he would be honored to walk with him. The student was incredibly happy to know Mr. Doud would walk with him. He said he was senior and although he had been on the team, he never had the opportunity to play. He said he was not particularly good. Mr. Doud said to never give up, there might be a chance this Friday. The student said his number was 85.
Friday night came and Mr. Doud and the student proudly walked across the field. Mr. Doud said he was excited to walk with this young man. The game began and their team was ahead. There was only about five minutes left and they were ahead by twenty points. Mr. Doud thought for sure they would put number 85 into the game. He even started yelling, “Put in number 85! Put in number 85!” He was yelling loud enough that people asked who was number 85. Mr. Doud said he was a senior who never had the chance to play. Suddenly everyone was yelling, “Put in number 85! Put in number 85!” Suddenly the game was over, and number 85 never got a chance to play.
Mr. Doud was able to show that this young man was loved and respected. It changed the young man’s life. He started coming to class on time and improved his grades. I think of our teachers. I think they are all like Mr. Doud. Next week will be a time where we say goodbye for the summer. Let us all remember to keep praying for each other this summer.
May the Lord bless you in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen