Town of Lady Lake (FL) City Commission
1 December 2014

Robert Ridgard (340 words)

First, let me thank you for the opportunity to provide a Humanist Invocation to begin your deliberations today. As this body convenes to do the business of the Town of Lady Lake, I suggest that you look ahead, with anticipation and enthusiasm, for the task set before you.

Humanists, by their very nature, believe that we all have the power to solve problems within our own capabilities, through science and reason. And, that by applying this science and reason with the strength found in empathy and compassion for our fellow humans, we can overcome any hurdle we encounter.

We don’t have to agree with each other's views, but we do have to respect each other's right to hold those views and practice their beliefs without fear of persecution; as long as no one infringes upon the rights of others.

Morality holds us all together by the promises we make and keep with each other. We rely and trust those promises and depend on each other to do that which is right and necessary for us to live in a society.

This moment of reflection is to remind us that we are here to work in harmony for the good of, and in service to, our community.  We gather together this evening to share our collective wisdom in response to the needs of our citizenry.  We are here to consider many issues and find the optimum solutions.

The success of our government stems from commitment of all to serving the entire community, not just a favored few. It isn't through strength in numbers, but strength in our actions that we find success.

I wanted to close by quoting from two presidents, admired by many of us--one a Republican and the other a Democrat.

First, the Republican:
When I do good, I feel good; when I do bad, I feel bad. That is my religion.
Abraham Lincoln

And now, the Democrat:
It's remarkable how much you can accomplish if you don't care who gets the credit.
Harry S. Truman

Thank you.