Joy to the World: CIU Celebrates a Family Christmas
By Michael A. Lanier
CIU Student Writer
Columbia International University students gathered on The Quad in front of the campus library on Nov. 29, to celebrate the beginning of the Christmas season. Through a night of festivities, the student body welcomed the start of the holidays as a family.
“I love coming together with my brothers and sisters in Christ, celebrating the reason why we're here,” said sophomore Jennifer Craven.
Several other students felt the same, excited to be together and reminding themselves of the reason for the season.
“I love being able to focus our hearts on Jesus to start the holiday season,” said senior Summer Rajavuori.
The night included festive snacks, group caroling, a candle-lighting, a reading of the Christmas story, and lighting a large Christmas tree on the lawn.
“It's a signature of celebrating CIU's Christmas,” said junior Alicia Heatherly.
The evening was filled with fun conversation and laughter as the students drank hot chocolate and lit hand-held candles.
“I enjoy seeing friends and fellowshipping with those I love,” said graduate student Justin Novello.
As the group sang classic Christmas carols, the spirit of the season grew, and the atmosphere was one of unity.
“I love the sense of family here,” said freshman Darian Hair. “I love being able to sing and spend time with the CIU family.”
A hush fell over The Quad as the students listened to the biblical account of the birth of Jesus.
“It's always a good time at CIU when we come together to celebrate,” said junior Mark Gossage.
The night came to a climax and cheers went up as the Christmas tree was lit.
Perhaps junior Zac Wolfenden summed up the evening best when he said, “Good sweets, beautiful tree, cloudy night, but our souls are bright. Merry Christmas!”