They had just enough time to strike up the band, hear words of inspiration from Principal Richard Hart and Pastor Father Joseph Piekarski, pledge allegiance, take part in prayers and sing “God Bless America.”
They also heard a trumpeted rendition of “Taps” played by eighth grader Patrick Hogate, who has accepted a scholarship and will attend Saint Mark’s next year. St. John the Beloved currently has an enrollment of 513 beginning at Pre-K3 and all students gathered May 28 around the flagpole in front of the school.
Father Piekarski reminded students they were offering prayers “for the people of our country and for those who seek peace throughout the world.”
“We pray for the sick and suffering of those in the military … keep in your mercy those men and women that have died in the course of preserving freedom.”
The service began with an invocation and included a scripture reading and presentation of a wreath.
The ceremony concluded just before a hint of rain began falling from the dark clouds.