“The Long Gray Weather Has Ended…”

Msgr. James Spengler Delivers the Invocation--Rockaway Beach Opening Day--May 27, 2011

God our creator and redeemer, we marvel at the beauty that surrounds us.

The long gray weather has ended.  The sky is blue now, the sand is golden and the ocean is a sparkling green.

The faces here today are black and white, red and yellow.  Your sky, your ocean, the sand we lie on, is for everyone.

The beach is open, swimming is permitted.  The rich and poor can come.  There are no restrictions, no stickers or passes, no membership cards.

We marvel at this great beach and we say, thank you, Lord.

We ask you to watch over us, young and old.

Protect us from harm that rough water can bring.  Watch over our lifeguards and security men and women.

May all who come for enjoyment and pleasure obey the rules, especially the time when it is not safe to swim—rough waters and strong currents, no lifeguards on duty, going out too far into the deep.

This is not our last prayer.  We’ll thank you often, for the great beach and ocean and we’ll ask you to watch over all who will use this wonderful place you have given to us all.


Invocation Delivered at Rockaway Beach Opening Day Ceremony, Friday, May 27, 2011, by Msgr. James Spengler, St. Rose of Lima R.C. Church.  Reprinted with permission of the author.

Header photo © Robert F. Carter 2009

Audience at Rockaway Beach Opening Day Ceremony--May 27, 2011

About rockviv

You've entered the cyber-locale of Vivian Rattay Carter. I blog with the username "rockviv," short for Rockaway Vivian. Rockaway (Queens County) is one of New York City's most fascinating neighborhoods. I have owned a home on the peninsula since 1994, and worked there, full-time, for almost a decade. I've been working, traveling, and doing research around the New York metro area since late 2012, but the Rock remains the muse of my writing. With degrees from Northwestern (journalism), Brooklyn College (elementary education), and Fordham Law, I find I have a lot to say about this great planet we share. I am proud to have served, for several years, as a board member of Rockaway Civic Association (formerly Rockaway Park Homeowners' and Residents) and a lay leader of First Congregational Church of Rockaway Beach, United Church of Christ. I'm a member and supporter of many New York cultural, educational, and ecology groups. Although I have produced written work for publication in multiple genres, beginning with poetry in the early 1970's, my first non-fiction book, Images of America: Rockaway Beach, was published by Arcadia in June, 2012. My monthly opinion column, Rock Solid, appeared in The Wave, Rockaway's weekly community newspaper, from April 2009 through October, 2012, and I contributed numerous other articles and photos from 1999-2012. From the home page, click on the "Publications/Press-Links" tab for links to these articles The views expressed here are my own, and do not necessarily coincide with the views of any of the organizations that publish my work, or the groups I assist and support. Here's to independent voices!
This entry was posted in Philosophy, Religion and Philanthropy, Water and waterways and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to “The Long Gray Weather Has Ended…”

  1. kate says:

    AMEN to that!!!

    • rockviv says:

      Hi, Kate!
      Good to hear from you again. Yes, it was a very long winter–so great to be in flip-flops again! Take care and thanks for reading and commenting on my post. I am also grateful to Father Spengler for sharing his beautiful words with my readers.
      Rock Viv

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