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A vital, dynamic aspect of human life
At Susquehanna, religious and spiritual life is as diverse as the student body.
We embrace and celebrate this diversity. In doing so, we nourish the life of the spirit and journey more deeply into our shared humanity.
Members of our community come from many religious and spiritual traditions or none at all. There are many opportunities for religious expression and community at Susquehanna.
In addition to many student clubs and organizations, we have a weekly Christian worship service, an active Jewish community, Catholic Campus Ministries organization and a Muslim prayer room on the ground floor of the GO House.
What does religion and spirituality mean for you? Where and when do you experience community and belonging?
At Susquehanna, religion and spirituality are as diverse as the student body. We don't shy away from this diversity. We embrace and celebrate it. We don't shy away the challenges that can arise from our differences, either. Instead, seek understanding and cooperation across lines of difference. Our affiliation with the Lutheran church (ELCA) is lived out in a bold affirmation of the religious pluralism of the Susquehanna community.
My work as chaplain is grounded in the belief that each of us is called to use our gifts and talents-our lives-in service to others, particularly the most vulnerable among us. The word vocation comes from the Latin vocare, to call. Discovering your calling means listening: to your own heart, to the wisdom of others and to the needs of the world.
Whatever path you find yourself on, as university chaplain, I will walk with you as you seek your calling and community in God's beloved world.
The Rev. Scott M. Kershner
Every Sunday at 11 a.m., we gather in Weber Chapel for a Christian worship service of scripture, preaching, reflection, prayer and Holy Communion.
Never been to church before? You are welcome here.
LGBTQA? You are welcome here.
Been going to church all your life? You are welcome here.
Not sure what you believe? You are welcome here.
Looking for a non-judgmental community of support and belonging? You are welcome here.
Looking for people who want to learn what it means to love your neighbor as yourself but don't pretend to have all the answers? You are welcome here.
We hope you get the picture: you are welcome here!
We are committed to growing and developing Jewish Life on campus. Student leaders of Hillel Jewish student organization work with our director Eli Bass to create a vibrant Jewish community. Our community is proud to affiliate with Hillel International.
The Goldstein-Weis Hillel House is the hub for Jewish life at Susquehanna. Students host large Shabbat dinners and a variety of other programs. Hillel house is a former home that provides space for students to engage in Jewish programs, hang out, watch TV, study and create community. Our Kosher kitchen provides a space for students to learn about Judaism and to cook delicious food. Holiday celebrations are held here throughout the year.
Friday Shabbat dinners are a celebration of Jewish identity and community. Our dinners are often a full house as we connect to a variety of campus communities. We welcome ALL students and community members regardless of background. Our all-gender restroom and wheelchair-friendly entrance is part of our effort to create a welcoming space for all.
What else should you know about Jewish Life at Susquehanna?
- Our Jewish & Israel Studies minor offers a regular cycle of courses and learning opportunities.
- There are about 70 self-identified Jewish students on campus. Congregation Beth El in Sunbury is about 15 minutes away. It is a non-affiliated congregation.
- Hillel actively communicates with other regional college Jewish communities, including at Bucknell University, Dickinson College, Juniata College, and Franklin and Marshal College.
- Instructors work with students to make allowances for students who wish to return home for High Holidays or who worship locally and may need to miss class.
- Hillel hosts a 150-person Passover Seder each year. This is one of the largest events for Hillel each year. Limited kosher food is available during Passover in the university cafeteria. Arrangements can be made to use the kosher kitchen in the Hillel House as well.
Student deacons work with the chaplain to plan and lead worship, plan retreats and service opportunities, and advocate for social and environmental justice.
Deacon of Worship
Troy Spencer '18 | Hummelstown, Pa. | Religious Studies
Troy assists in the planning and leadership in the Sunday chapel services and also plans and leads Kairos and devotional service on Tuesday nights in Horn Meditation Chapel.
Deacon of Service
Liam Fyfe '20| Lititz, Pa. | Religious Studies
As deacon of service, Liam's main duty is to plan and execute large service events throughout the year.
Deacon of Spiritual Nurture
Emma Kate Lander '20 | Severn, Md. | Religious Studies
Emma Kate will plan and organize the spring and fall religious and spiritual life.
Deacon of Social & Environmental Justice
Charles Frekot '18 | Columbia, Md. | Religious Studies
Charlie organizes programs and activities for environmental and social justice on campus and around the world.
Student Assistant to the Chaplain
Alyssa Miville '19 | Turbotville, Pa. | Psychology
Alyssa assists with the communication side of the ministry of the chaplain's office, maintaining the social media presence and helping publicize events and activities.
Student Assistant for Chapel Music
Lucy Ferruzza '20 | Lanoka Harbor, N.J. | Music Education-Instrumental
Lucy's duties include accompanying the chapel choir, providing music for services on Sunday, and arranging and coordinating service music and special chapel events.
Student Assistant to the HandBell Choir
Lydia Getgen '18 | Hughesville, Pa. | Music Education-Instrumental
As director, Lydia leads the HandBell Choir when they perform during chapel service and other special events on campus.
Jewish Life Engagement Associates
Student engagement leaders are designed to dramatically enhance Jewish life on campus. Each assistant is charged with building relationships with uninvolved Jewish students on campus.
Joshua Appell '20
Gabrielle Nirenberchik '18
Rebekka Rosen '19
Brianna Watson '20
Plainsboro, N.J. French/Business Administration
- Laylat Al Mi'rāj, April 13—Also called Isra and Mi'rāj, commemorates the ascension of the Prophet Muhammed to heaven.
- Laylat al Bara'at, April 30—Night of Repentance/Forgiveness in preparation for Ramadan.
- Ramadan—The ninth month of the Islamic calendar is observed worldwide as a month of fasting to commemorate the first revelation of the Quran to Muhammad according to Islamic belief.
Transportation to the Islamic Center in Sunbury is provided each Friday (when classes are in session). The shuttle bus will be at the Deg. Campus Center circle at 1 p.m.
- Passover Seder, March 30, 7:30 p.m. in Evert Dining Hall—A festive meal that involves the re-telling of the story of the Exodus from Egypt.
- Passover, March 30-April 7—The Jewish people celebrate Passover as a commemoration of their liberation by God from slavery in Egypt and their freedom as a nation under the leadership of Moses.
- Eve of Yam Hashoah, April 11—Remembering the victims of the Holocaust
- Yam Haatzma'ut—Celebrating Israel's 70th Independence Day.
Holy Week Schedule
- Palm Sunday, March 25, 11 a.m. in Weber Chapel—The Sunday before Easter, when the triumphal entry of Jesus into Jerusalem is celebrated in many Christian churches by processions in which palm fronds are carried.
- Maundy Thursday, March 29, 7:30 p.m. in Weber Chapel—Maundy Thursday is the Christian holy day falling on the Thursday before Easter. It commemorates the Maundy and Last Supper of Jesus Christ with the Apostles as described in the Canonical gospels. This meal is the last time Jesus spends with his disciples and he tells them what is to happen.
- Good Friday, March 30, 4:30 p.m. in Weber Chapel—The Friday before Easter Sunday, on which the Crucifixion of Jesus Christ is commemorated in the Christian Church. It is traditionally a day of fasting and penance.
- Easter Vigil, March 31, 8 p.m. in Weber Chapel—Also called the Paschal Vigil or the Great Vigil of Easter, this is a service held in traditional Christian churches as the first official celebration of the Resurrection of Jesus.
- Easter, April 1, 9 a.m. in Weber Chapel—Also called Pascha (Greek, Latin) or Resurrection Sunday, Easter is a festival and holiday celebrating the resurrection of Jesus from the dead, described in the New Testament as having occurred on the third day of his burial after his crucifixion by the Romans at Calvary c. 30 AD. It is the culmination of Lent.
Other Special Worship Services
- Senior Blessing, April 29, 11 a.m. in Weber Chapel—A special farewell worship service for all graduating students. All are welcome to attend.
- Baccalaureate Service, May 15, 8 p.m. on Smith Lawn—A festive ecumenical service of praise and thanksgiving. All are welcome!
Better Together is an interfaith club committed to fostering a safe space for people of all backgrounds.
Catholic Campus Ministries
An organization devoted to helping students learn about and grow in their Roman Catholic faith.
Provides educational, cultural, and social involvement opportunities for Jewish students to explore and celebrate their Jewish identity.
InterVarsity Christian Fellowship
Encourages Christians on campus through weekly on-campus worship services, Bible studies and other fellowship activities.
This is a weekly gathering on Tuesday nights for fellowship, worship, and quiet reflection.
Lutheran Student Movement
Encourages passionate Christian faith through worship, fellowship and service opportunities.
An organization for students who are interested in going into professional Christian ministry.
Dec. 4, 2018
At one of our most cherished traditions, more than 1,600 members of the university and surrounding communities gather in Weber Chapel. The service includes candle lighting and carols, as well as traditional readings, songs and prayers in celebration of the season. Attendees are asked to bring a kid-friendly, non-perishable food item.Read More