By Corey Boice
Every fall semester, Hilbert’s Office of Mission Integration and Campus Ministry schedule a week full of activities for students called St. Francis Week, created to bring us back to the Franciscan values that the college was founded on. To kick off the week, on Monday, October 2, there was an ice cream sundae event to encourage students to take part in the rest of the week’s festivities. Later that night, a keynote speaker addressed students regarding the life of St. Francis of Assisi. The speaker was highly noted by those that attended the event, so the Office of Mission Integration and Campus Ministry plan on having a speaker again next year.
Tuesday, October 3 was the St. Francis Week lunch feast. More events were planned on Wednesday, October 4 for students to participate in. Students were encouraged to attend mass that morning, and that afternoon was the peace walk. There were approximately one hundred and sixty-five students, faculty, staff, and administration who attended the event to help honor and commemorate events from St. Francis of Assisi’s life. After the walk, lunch was provided for everyone who attended to enjoy, and there were approximately two hundred faculty, staff, and students at this lunch.
On Thursday, October 5, the Office of Mission Integration and Campus Ministry worked along with the Franciscan Spirit Club to host the Agape Latte event. This event recently started up last year with faculty and staff members taking the time to talk to students about their faith, culture, and general life experiences. The event was attended by approximately forty-five students and received positive feedback. Dr. Amy Smith spoke at another Agape Latte on November 8.
To finish off the week, on Friday, October 6, there was a blessing of the animals. Students, employees, guests, and family members all came on campus to get their pets blessed. This event is also a positive one that goes over well with students, and it is a great way to embrace St. Francis of Assisi’s love of all creation.
Students who attended the past events are going to love to hear about the upcoming events planned by the Office of Mission Integration and Campus Ministry, including A Couch is Not a Home. This event will bring awareness to the number of individuals under the age of twenty-five who are couch-surfing because they do not have a place to call home. This event will be taking place on November 15 from 8 am to 3 p.m. in the West Herr Atrium.
With finals right around the corner in December, the Office of Mission Integration and Campus Ministry have two final events planned. The first is one that the community both inside and outside of Hilbert can attend. Right before the Children’s Christmas party on December 3, will be a Live Nativity at 2 p.m. The program is a reenactment of the manger scene in the hills of Greccio, Italy. If anyone is interested in being a part of the annual tradition, there are openings for the narrator, St. Francis of Assisi, Mary, Joseph, Three Wise Men, Angels, or Shepherds. Those participating in the Live Nativity will be asked to report to the McGrath Library Conference Room by 1:20 p.m. on December 3.
The other event is the Blessing of the Brains, for students who would like a divine intervention before their finals. Students will be blessed, enjoy free refreshments, and will be given a small gift to help them relax and prepare for finals. The event is December 11 at 7 p.m. in the lower lever campus center.