Celebrations Highlight Diversity

November 20, 2007

BLOOMINGTON, Ill. – Illinois Wesleyan University will hold its next Chapel Hour on Wednesday, Dec. 5, at 11:00 a.m. in the Evelyn Chapel (1301 N. Park St., Bloomington).

The service, titled “Hanging of the Greens,” will celebrate the start of the holiday season. Participants can hang wreaths, place greens in the windows, and decorate the tree with ornaments.

The service will kick off a week of festivities. These holidays will be celebrated early because of IWU’s Winter Break. All of the events are open to the public.

“Hanukkah Celebration” will take place in the Main Lounge located in the Memorial Center (104 E. University St., Bloomington) on Wednesday, Dec. 5 at 5:30 p.m. The festivities will include an explanation of the Hanukkah story, songs, games and other Hanukkah traditions.

Hanukkah commemorates the recapture of the Jewish temple from the Syrians in 165 BCE by a Jewish group called the Maccabees. The Maccabees rededicated their temple to God, but only had enough oil to light the temple lamps for one night. The oil lasted for eight days, allowing the Maccabees to prepare more oil. Every year Jewish families celebrate the eight days of Hanukkah by lighting one candle each night for the eight nights on the menorah, a particular kind of candelabra, and exchanging gifts

On Thursday, Dec. 6 at 5:30 p.m. in the Turfler Room (located in the Memorial Center), the Kwanzaa Celebration will include food and story-telling in honor of the holiday.

Kwanzaa, an African-American holiday observed from Dec. 26 to Jan. 1, celebrates African-American heritage and culture. The holiday, which is not a religious celebration, is a chance for people to reflect at the end of the year, while looking ahead to the next year

The week will conclude with a University Service of Lessons and Carols in Evelyn Chapel on Friday, Dec. 7 at 7:00 p.m.

For additional information, contact the Chaplain’s Office at (309) 556-3005.

Contact: Heather Lindquist, (309) 556-3181