The word is getting out about AMU!

The word is getting out about AMU!

It was a privilege to keynote Governor Rick Scott’s inauguration prayer breakfast.  I’m posting an excerpt of the speech below.  But I thought you might like a few photos of the breakfast and inauguration ceremony as the speaking opportunity did give me a bird’s-eye view from two excellent perches.

Let’s start with who was across from me at the breakfast: my new friend Governor Rick Perry. Eat your cookies, Rick!


Here’s the good Archbishop Thomas Wenski, Archdiocese of Miami, whom the Governor asked to do a reading from St. Paul’s letter to the Philippians (he quipped it was a letter from St. Paul to the Floridians!).

After the breakfast the inaugural party gathered in a room in the Old Capitol before processing on to the dais for the program.  The “Who’s Who” of Florida politicians were there so they all got an earful about Ave Maria University.  So were some prominent national politicians.  Here’s Chris Christie chatting up somebody.  I didn’t talk to him because I didn’t want him to awkwardly hug me like he did Cowboys owner Jerry Jones.

Sitting next to me on the platform was this wonderful representative of the U.S. Army (whose name I can’t remember) who was tiny but when she got to the microphone to sing the National Anthem, to my surprise, her voice bellowed in the plaza like she was Beverly Sills.  I took this photo of this resident of Florida without giving her any notice, and it actually captures her wonderful personality and joyful, Christian presence.  The inauguration ceremony devoted a good bit of time to the men and women of our armed forces, and my new, nameless friend, represented them well.

Here’s a cool photo of the military fly-over, with the morning sun approaching its noon spot.

And finally, here’s a shot of the Governor and Mrs. Scott as they departed the ceremony – and knowing the Governor, he went straight to work.  Our Class of 2013 had him as their commencement speaker, and so they know his sincerity and downright decency.  

All in all, it was a great day for Ave Maria University as our flag was firmly planted on Florida soil in a very prominent way.  The word is getting out about AMU!