Dec 2, 2008

Reading day: the calm before the storm

by Megan House and Natalie Lozano

While Dec. 4 holds the distinction of being Liberty’s pre-exam Reading Day, two other events mark the day with significance: Christmas convocation and the second open dorms of the semester.

Christmas convocation will be held at 11 a.m. in the Vines Center, giving students an extra hour of rest compared to the normal 10 a.m. convocation. Christmas convocation is a unique holiday event that is anticipated by Liberty students every year. The first one was held in 1992 when the Student Government Association performed “The 12 Days of LU.”

“Everyone loved it,” Campus Worship Pastor David McKinney said.

In 1993, staff member Eric Lovett realized that keeping students calm for the last convocation of the semester was impossible. He helped the first full production of Christmas Convo happen in 1994 and continued to be involved with the event until 2001, according to McKinney.

Adam Lancaster picked up the task of organizing Christmas convocation after Lovett left. McKinney inherited the position in 2005, selecting a team of Liberty student volunteers to help generate ideas.

The purpose of Christmas convocation is to give students and faculty an opportunity to relax and enjoy themselves.

“At the end of the semester everyone is just worn out,” McKinney said. “Students are tired of studying and writing, and faculty are tired of grading and writing tests.”

Everyone needs a break and Christmas convocation provides a place to relax and laugh as a student body, McKinney added.

“There is something special and uniting about laughing together, especially when it’s clean laughter,” McKinney said.

The second event available to students on reading day is open dorms, the second of two times this semester that males and females are allowed to see inside each other’s dorms. This is set apart from the Election Day open dorms due to the display of Christmas decorations.

For years, students have been putting wrapping paper on their doors, hanging wreaths, stringing lights on trees and even constructing fireplaces from construction paper or cardboard. Many halls have decorating contests.

Campus Pastor Michael Miller thinks open dorms is a fun opportunity for friends to get together, watch movies and enjoy holiday food. Traditionally, the campus pastors travel from dorm to dorm to see the decorations.



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