Special to The Clinton Courier
The Christmas season is a much-anticipated time of celebration at Mississippi College, where brilliant holiday light displays, joyous stage productions, and Christ-centered musical performances help spread the news of God’s greatest gift to mankind. Clintonians are invited to participate in many of the festivities on the Clinton campus, and generations of citizens and alumni hold the celebrations dear.
Lighting of the Quad
For many students and Clintonians alike, the Lighting of the Quad, which bathes the heart of the campus in twinkling Christmas lights, marks the start of the Christmas season. Families can join the MC community for the activity-packed evening at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, November 29.
Holiday-themed backdrops will adorn the area, offering ample “selfie” opportunities for those seeking the perfect photo to place on their Christmas cards. A decorating station will offer all the materials to craft custom-made Christmas tree decorations.
Talented MC faculty, student musicians and singers will fill the air with popular and original selections of timeless Christmas music. And throughout the night, MC’s social clubs and tribes will participate in lively competitions, such as a Christmas tree decorating contest, that is open to outside organizations.
All Lighting of the Quad events are free of charge.
Festival of Lights
One of the longest-running annual events at MC, the Festival of Lights will return for three performances, each starting at 7:30 p.m. Thursday through Saturday, December 1-3, in Provine Chapel.
The tradition of a candlelit auditorium filled with Christ-centered a cappella and accompanied music began in 1986 under the direction of Dr. Richard Joiner. Dr. Beth Everett, MC’s new director of choral activities, will take the helm this year to provide a worshipful experience that will include scripture readings in the tradition of Lessons and Carols.
“It’s an honor to be following in the footsteps of Dr. Joiner and to have him support what we are doing,” Everett said. “The flow of the service will constantly be moving, and will be accessible to anyone, no matter their faith tradition. The symbolism of the choir holding candles demonstrates that the darkness cannot stay where the light is, is a purposeful lesson of service. We hope to give people a chance to get their Christmas season off to a meaningful start.”
For the first time, members of the Choctaw Chorus will join the MC Singers for three selections, and faculty and student instrumentalists will provide accompaniment.
General admission tickets cost $15 each, $10 for MC faculty and staff with valid identification, and $5 for students with valid IDs.
Night of Worship
Worship Collective, the Department of Music’s Christian performance ensemble, is winning fans throughout the world with its original music and performances that seek to glorify God and encourage listeners. Since October 2018, the group’s original songs have been streamed more than 180,000 times in 48 states and 75 countries.
Worship Collective will present its annual Night of Worship at 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, December 6, in the chapel at First Baptist Church in Clinton, directly across East College Street from the MC campus.
The ensemble of singers, guitarists, keyboardists and drummers values sharing the gospel through authentic worship. Its student performers balance music and faith to praise God in a way that is uniquely MC, offering a relaxing night of worship right before fall semester final exams at MC.
The event is free and open to the public.
Members of the Clinton community can help support MC’s academic programs and extend the cause of Christ this holiday season by participating in service opportunities on campus.
Individuals can demonstrate what the season of giving is all about by helping provide clothing, supplies and toys for disadvantaged children as part of the Prison Fellowship Angel Tree Program.
Through November 18, the first names, interests, and clothing and shoe sizes of 125 boys and girls whose parent or parents are incarcerated in Mississippi will be made available on construction paper “angels” tacked to a display board in the MC cafeteria.
Members of the Clinton community are invited to select an angel from the board, purchase some of the requested items, and return them to the MC Community Service Center before Monday, December 12.
During the Christmas season, the MC Community Service Center also supports approximately forty-five “Seedsters” – residents of the Mustard Seed, a Christian community in Brandon for adults with developmental disabilities. Participants pick a man or a woman and fill a bag with items the Seedster has indicated he or she would like to have. Items such as T-shirts, blankets, towels, socks, and warm-up suits are usually on the list.
For more information about the Angel Tree program or the Mustard Seed effort, email Shari Barnes, director of the Community Service Center, at email@example.com.
Art education students in the MC Department of Art are helping to finance a trip for senior class members to the National Art Education Association’s convention in the spring by selling brightly-colored ceramic Christmas ornaments and linoleum prints. The sale, an annual tradition at MC, will include ornaments in the shape of crosses, angels, doves, and even the new Mississippi College logo, as well as matted prints in a variety of subjects.
The students will sell their creations in the MC cafeteria on Monday through Wednesday, November 28-30, from 11 a.m. until 1 p.m. and from 5 until 7 p.m. On Thursday and Friday, December 1-2, they will be in the Commons, from 11 a.m. until 1 p.m. both days, and from 5 until 7 p.m. on Thursday. For more information, email Dr. Stephanie Busbea at firstname.lastname@example.org.