Osceola County, FL, Council Meeting
15 April 2019
Joseph Richardson (254 words - 1:37)

 Thank you for the opportunity to provide the invocation this afternoon on behalf of the Central Florida Freethought Community.

We are here today, of course, to do the business of this county. In that process, let us be encouraged and inspired by each other.

The people that you see in the chamber right now are a small cross section of those to whom you are responsible. There are business people and trades people, some rich and some poor, teachers and the children we entrust to them, lovers and loners, of all races and creeds. Let us glance around the room and remember that each one of them has hopes and dreams, each one grieves, each one celebrates.

And each is depending on us – as a community - to make decisions that will benefit and improve the county and the lives of those who call Osceola County their home.

As we work together to make those decisions, let us all put aside personal preferences and make sure we consider all sides before committing to a plan. It is possible to understand another’s perspective without having to agree with it. As Aristotle said…

“It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it.”

As a person who strives to be rational and empathetic, I encourage you to use hard data as well as compassion in your deliberations.

In doing that, we will help each other, encourage each other, and cooperate with each other for the benefit of all.