12 December, 2009

Christmas Off Campus

One on the neat things about going to the University of Dayton is that every year on the Feast of the Immaculate Conception (our schools patroness), campus would be closed for class but one of the greatest celebrations of the year took place:  Christmas on Campus.

Christmas On Campus consisted of hundreds of thousands of Christmas lights all over campus, ice sculptures, rappelling santa, game booths put on by all the clubs, hot chocolate, and everyone’s favorite, “adopt a kid”.  Kids from poor neighborhoods would be bussed in and students could “adopt” them for the night.  The students would take their kid around campus to play games, see the lights, get their picture with Santa, and drink hot chocolate.  The night would end with just the students celebrating Immaculate Conception Mass together, our last big event together before exams and Christmas break.

This event has put our campus on the map, and students from all over attend UD just because of Christmas on Campus.  Due to its popularity, alumni have decided to take this event to their home cities and thus Christmas Off Campus was born.

Every year on the Saturday after Immaculate Conception, alumni gather in their city for a kid oriented service project and a Mass celebration.

My grandfather, also and alum, and I have been serving together in this capacity since before I even graduated from UD.  It’s become our special tradition each year! 

This was our first year celebrating Mass with our Chapter, so of course I was happy to volunteer to plan it.  We’re also incredibly blessed that on Director of Vocations of the diocese is an alum as well, so he celebrated the Mass for us!  Fr. Luke was able to connect summers spend on the roof of “the castle” at UD to the joyful spirit of Advent in his homily.  A few of the alum sing & play instruments so they started a little ensemble that played during Mass as well.  A true UD liturgy!

We finished the night with a potluck at an alum’s house near by, where the drinking and eating began...in true UD fashion!

Merry Christmas Off Campus!

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