2009 FTA New York Spring Dinner
Tuesday, March 10, 2009
The following 'Welcoming
Remarks' were delivered by Fred Tibbitts at the 2009 New York Spring Dinner.
2009 FTA NYC Spring Dinner
Welcome to the Thirteenth Annual FTA “A Spring Evening in New York with Very Special Friends”. We are delighted you could all join us this evening. Let me first introduce our new Office Manager, who was responsible for the organization of the dinner, Michelle Plew.
Although she could not be with us this evening, we want to remember Lori LaDu, whom Michelle has replaced, for her past organization of our dinners. Lori and her husband expect to be present as our guests for the FTA NYC Fall Dinner on Tuesday 10 November.
I ask my daughter, Jennifer Tibbitts, whom many of you may remember as our Marketing Director to please stand to be recognized. I wish to thank our generous sponsors who make possible our dinners, including a financial contribution by Alice Elliot of The Elliot Group, who could not be with us this evening, to further the good purposes of our dinners. Would the Sponsors please stand and be recognized.
My Welcoming Remarks always make clear that we come together for higher purposes: To recognize hospitality excellence and in the names of those whom we honor, provide scholarships at schools of higher hospitality education as well as to make charitable donations to UNICEF, the Tibetan Children’s Health & Education Fund, Tibet House and others.
As our dinner theme is “Celebrate Renewal”, this evening I give you my 2009 New Year’s Letter, that many of you may already have read, but given our dinner theme, I believe is worth repeating.
2009 has at last arrived around the world. Most of us are hoping for change. Change for the good. The President of the United States has proclaimed “…At This Defining Moment in American History…Change Has Come to America”. And changed all we are; no matter our identity or whereabouts on planet Earth.
Gandhi said “Be the change you seek”. But is it that simple? For most of us, our desire for change is recognition that our lives are less than perfect; that we feel driven to be connected with a better solution for our unhappiness and perceived lack of satisfaction with our lives.
Many feel lost. “Where are the great leaders of the past?” they ask, who arose to lead us from the depths of despair, giving us hope that the future would soon be better for everyone. They cry out “Is there not someone who will show us the way?”
The truth is that we all have the potential to be great leaders. Be the leader you seek. Our intuitive self, the home of our connection with the Energy of the Universe and all that is Real and Unreal, knows the way forward. We need only ask and our path appears at our feet, bathed beyond our imagination in the White Light that beckons us to begin our journey.
At every turn, events and others would have us believe that we are at the mercy of our future; that we are not in control of our destiny. Those who would discourage us to be the leader we seek, do so because they, themselves are lost and do not recognize their Amazing Grace within. Events unfold without warning, suggesting that our fate is sealed, that we are defenseless to make a difference or save our souls or more importantly, the souls of others.
But those who have become One with their intuitive self and have learned to trust in it know differently: We can see the way forward and we can be the great leader we seek. We must have the unwavering conviction to look forward and not be distracted by events and those who would seek to discourage us with seemingly irrefutable logic. We must go against the wind, fire and rain that assault us without conscience.
We must never surrender our confidence that we will prevail, despite whatever our analytic mind would argue or suggest we accept as reality. For our reality, now and forever more is directly connected to the strength of our belief in ourselves to be our solution and our hope for the future. Never surrender your dreams. Never give-up and your future will be what you make of it: Not what events or others would impose upon you.
Which brings us to the motivation we must embrace to be the future we seek. Great leaders are not focused on being great: They are focused on showing others the way to a better place, never at the expense of any individual or group. They exist to be a beacon in the night; the White Light that bathes our path forward to that place where our dreams and altruistic ambitions await, as a shelter for all from the storm.
If our genuine intention is service to others, not ourselves, with unwavering confidence that we can and must make a difference for the benefit of All Sentient Beings, it will be so. We must be our future, but for the benefit of all humanity. It is a perfect Universe: We need only understand how it is organized and that we have the ability to be the future we seek, but for the benefit of All Sentient Beings, not merely ourselves.
The beauty of life is service to others. Let 2009 be the year that we all become great leaders and embark upon our path to that place which is our hope for a better world for us all and that we constantly rededicate the merit of our actions to the beauty of accomplishing these intentions without recognition or glory for ourselves. Let us all be the Angel we seek.