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St. John Paul II Newman Center celebrates 2020 graduates

Posted at 6:20 PM, May 09, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-10 00:45:31-04

OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) - — St. John Paul II Newman Center is honoring the class of 2020.

Saturday morning, staff and others celebrated graduates from their cars.

Bell towers rang as members celebrated the 2020 graduates.

"They have accomplished so much and they've really kind of been robbed from that experience at the end this year to be celebrated and so getting creative is the least we could do and so we're excited to congratulate them and give them small tokens of our appreciation and see them off," resident manager Lauren Hankes said.

Students drove through the parking lot and were greeted by staff and missionaries with gifts and signs of encouragement.

"I'm really excited to be done. It's been a long journey but it's been worth it and I'm excited to move on from college," graduate Michaela Moriarty said.

Moriarty studied interior design at MCC.

Her faith brought her to the college parish and now she plans to become a missionary.

"These past few months have been really difficult but I think because of my faith I've been able to get through it," she said. "Because I've had like daily prayer, I've been able to complete my degree and stay strong in this weird strange time and I've been able to pray for people and pray for everyone that's been impacted."

Father Dan Andrews, the pastor and director of the center, says the class of 2020 missed out on a lot, so they wanted to honor the students they've watched grow over the years.

"They're more brothers and sisters than students," Andrews said. "They're people we've come to know and love and respect so it's a bittersweet moment for us, and we've very proud of them."

Moriarty says it's been a tough semester but it's not just about the walk at the end.

"I'm so proud of everyone for finishing their degree in this way," she said. "Congrats to everyone that's done it. It has been difficult but it's going to be worth it."

She tells 3 News Now it's about what you take with you, and the impact you leave behind.