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story.lead_photo.caption Members of the Helias High School Class of 2017 switch their tassels from one side of their caps to the other during Sunday graduation at St. Joseph Cathedral Photo by Marty Beck

The Rev. Joshua Duncan on Sunday told Helias High School's 151 graduates they have been instructed in truth and must go out into the world and do the same.

"Go out into the world and be like the yeast, which leavens an entire loaf of bread. And remember, it only takes a little bit of yeast, just a little, to make the entire loaf rise. And yes, you will be crucified, but you won't be afraid.

"You've been on that cross (before). You have been on that cross while at your least, and at your best. You have also been at the place where truth and charity meet. Where there is friendship and joy with the God who loves you."

Duncan graduated from Helias a decade ago and now serves as the associate pastor of St. Joseph Cathedral, where Sunday's graduation Mass took place.

He told the packed cathedral parents will always be the first teachers of children, especially in their faith.

Friendship, he said, is a treasure requiring both loving and thinking. But the world is losing its ability to think and lost its ability for true friendship.

He cited examples of words that are increasingly in our vocabulary, such as "whatever" — a word that says "I'm not going to think about this."

The word "like," Duncan said, is used on social media, but lacks precision. "I don't want a 'like' button, I want an 'is' button," he said.

"Our world is full of opinions. I don't know about you, but I am tired of opinions. I want truth," he said.

Everyone, he said, is offended about everything. Society reacts with anger, because it doesn't know how to express itself. So we see school shootings, drug abuse and "empty, soulless, mindless sex." This, he said, is what the devil wanted from the very beginning.

It's not where our culture is going, but where it's at now, he said.

He said his prayer for the graduates and everyone in attendance is to have a place "to encounter God's truth and charity."

Principal Kenya Fuemmeler presented various awards to students and noted the senior class has been offered $910,000 per year in scholarships, and has accepted $850,000 of those scholarships.

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