Christmas Season Kicks Off
The holiday lights are twinkling on the tree in Burwell Parlor following this year's Moravian Love Feast.
The annual campus tradition, marking the beginning of the Christmas season, began at Belk Chapel with a festive Christian worship encouraging spirituality and fellowship among students. "It offers the students a pause before all the craziness of exams," said Alice O'Toole '07, MBA '12, Director of Outreach and Fellowship in the chapel. It's a chance to "step back and remember what this holiday, for people of faith, really is all about."
The event, organized by the chapel and the Spiritual Life committee of the Campus Union Board, celebrates Christmas with lessons drawn from Old and New Testament stories read by students, anthems performed by The Chorale, an offering in support of the Guatemala mission trip, a blessing that leads to fellowship over coffee and sweet cakes, and a recessional by candlelight to a nearby Christmas tree. There, the participants sing Christmas carols.
Being inside the chapel, listening to the Chorale, singing along to "Silent Night," hearing the stories of Isaiah, Luke, and John, all while smelling the fir trees and pinecones decorations is a simple, genuine pleasure, said O'Toole. "It's one of those moments for me at least when you realize the Christmas season is starting."
The Moravian Love Feast is a chance to "worship together as a community" and "get a greater sense of the community and religious life of the campus," said Christina Crosby, a Philosophy and Religion major from Lynchburg, Virginia. The junior is Spiritual Life Chair, but she is quick to point out students of all faiths attend. "You get to eat sweet cake and coffee [regardless], and it tastes just as good."