The catastrophe playing out now in the Gulf of Mexico has defied every attempt to stop the millions of gallons of oil gushing from a reservoir beneath 20,000 feet of rock and another 5,000 feet of water. Non-engineer observers naturally plead, “Somebody do something!” We don’t know what to do or who will do it.{{more}}

Those words could apply to almost every serious issue society faces today. From economics to health care, poverty to criminal justice, education to family life, there are so many problems. Who will solve them?

Some of the solutions, and hopefully not part of those problems, will come from the young people graduating from high school this month or from college last month. Those idealistic, energetic sons and daughters represent a shining hope for a better tomorrow as they continue to prepare to solve our most vexing problems. Doing so will take all the graduates’ courage, creativity and hard work. And they thought final exams were hard.

More important than what they will do is who they are. The hope of today’s adults wishing this year’s graduates well as they embark on the world is that they live lives of goodness and integrity. For Catholic graduates, either from a Catholic school or a public program, a tried-and-true way to do that is to practice their Catholic faith regularly – especially by making Sunday Mass a priority – and make the gift of faith part of their everyday lives.

Who will do something? Young, maturing men and women who live out the highest ideals of citizenship and their membership in the Church.

What will they do? They’ll tackle the concerns and crises sure to come. And because of who they are and who they’ll become, their elders should hold confidence in a future no less bright than today.