December 08, 2016
Michelle Adams O'Regan
Communications and Marketing
More than 100 students, along with more than a dozen faculty and staff members, gathered for a meal and exchange of cultural and religious traditions on Friday, December 2. The eighth annual "A Celebration of Light: Intercultural Holiday Dinner" brought the community together for dinner and fellowship, followed by four brief presentations.
Three students spoke about holiday traditions in the Dominican Republic (Angelidi Monegro '18), Paraguay (Roque Otazo '20), and Thailand (Katrina Thaibinh '20). Assistant Professor of English Michael New offered attendees a brief background on the celebration of Hanukkah.
As each speaker described their respective traditions, a common theme emerged: faith, food and family. Otazo described the Roman Catholic-influenced celebrations in Paraguay that include a large barbeque dinner, and especially clerico, a fruit wine. Thaibinh spoke about some of the Buddhist traditions in Thailand, including village-wide gift exchanges of handmade items such as scarves and clothing, and night-long multi-village celebrations.
"It was great to see the campus community come together to learn how other cultures and religions celebrate the holiday season," said Wayne Currie, director of the Multicultural Center. "We enjoy collaborating with our partners in Campus Ministry to offer this dinner each year."
Following the presentations, Currie emceed a question and answer session and raffle for various prizes, including several items that had been purchased earlier in the day at Campus Ministry's Fair Trade Fair.
Story and photo by Cory True '09