Friday, December 2, 2011

StetsonU to hold annual Yule Log Lighting on Tuesday, Dec. 6

Stetson University invites the community to join in its annual Yule Log Lighting at 6 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 6, at Hulley Tower between DeLand Hall and Chaudoin Hall, located at 513 N. Woodland Blvd., DeLand. The annual ritual, which traditionally opens the holiday season at Stetson University, is sponsored by the campus Student Christian Ministries and the Chaplain’s Office. The event is free and open to the public. Parking is available across the street behind Allen Hall and Flagler Hall, both of which are located near the intersection of N. Woodland Blvd. and W. Minnesota Ave.

This tradition began at Stetson in 1938 with the lighting of candles in the women’s residence halls. According to tradition, the Yule Log ceremony, added 10 years later, brings good luck and happiness to those who take part.

Music played by Stetson students will signal the start of the outdoor festivities in front of the blazing Yule Log. Students from the School of Music will lead the crowd in caroling.

Honorary Stetson alumna Monya Winzer Gilbert, daughter of the late Geoffrey and Marjorie Gilbert of the Stetson University faculty, will recite the tradition of the Yule Log kindling. A custom traced to the Druids of northern Europe, it is said to bring good luck and happiness to all who take part. Marjorie Gilbert researched and wrote the history of the Yule Log ceremony for Stetson.

Students will give the invocation and read from Scripture, and Stetson Chaplain Michael Fronk will offer a meditation on the meaning of the evening. After the meditation, members of the Student Christian Ministries will invite participants to join them in casting sprigs on the fire, representing the year past, and in lighting candles from the Yule Log flame. Participants will then move to the Carlton Union Building circle, where refreshments will be served after the ceremony.

For additional information, contact Stetson University’s Chaplain’s Office at (386) 822-7523

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