Each ending carries with it a beginning. This is the cycle lived every day of our lives; the slowing to rest, to sleep, at the end of day. That pause is the moment just before possibility presents itself as new. Tonight, we turn from the past to step into a new year, a new decade. Hope rises in me. Hope that we will realize our greatest potential and embrace each other as one family, moving forward into the arms of the sisters and brothers with whom we will embrace all living things as part of the larger whole. With this I open my arms to welcome the new year.