Salve Regina offers its annual Festival of Lights ceremony to the public
During this time of the year as the days become shorter and darker, many religions take time to celebrate light — and celebrations such as Diwali, Advent and Hanukkah include lighting of candles and emphasizing light in the darkness.
Salve Regina also has a longstanding tradition of honoring these rituals with the annual Festival of Lights, which will take place this Wednesday, Dec. 1 at 7 p.m. in Ochre Court. The festival is free and open to both the Salve Regina community and the public, and there is no registration required. Regardless of vaccination status, attendees must wear a mask.
Salve Regina’s Festival of Lights will commence with the lighting of a peace candle, a menorah, an advent wreath and a fanoos. It will include readings, songs, prayers and dances from many different spiritual traditions. A reception of hot chocolate, coffee and treats will follow the festival.
The Festival of Lights has been a Salve Regina tradition since 2001. Last year, the festival was cancelled due to the pandemic, making this Salve Regina’s 19th celebration of the Festival of Lights.
In keeping with the University’s critical concern theme of nonviolence, the Festival of Lights will place emphasis on peace building, including the opening song “Give us Your Peace,” a Hebrew prayer for peace and a dance for universal peace. This year’s Festival of Lights will also honor World Aids Day, which falls on Dec. 1.
For the first time, Salve Regina alumni are being invited to participate as readers in the ceremony. Katherine and Christopher Carbone, professors in the holistic and mental health counseling graduate program, will also join the event as they offer sacred music and dance.
The Festival of Lights is a time for the Salve Regina community to gather, pray for the needs of the world and hope for brighter days to come. Please join Salve Regina as the University welcomes light into the world.
The festival is free and open to the public. There is no registration required. Regardless of vaccination status, attendees must wear a mask.
Featured photo is from a Festival of Lights in 2017.