profiles • monthly series • campus events
February 17, 2011 town events • facts & figures• business
Labyrinth experience provides outlet for meditation Sara F. Neumann Staff Writer
veals a winding path defined in purple. “The Chaplain’s husband picked the color, actually, and the company liked it so much lthough Elizabethtown Colthey picked it up for their other lege is a Brethren-affiliated labyrinths,” Senior Marshal college, the religious identity of Fettro said, the student leader in students and faculty has become charge of the Labyrinth. more diverse in recent years; the While Chartres labyrinth is a religions on campus vary from Catholic labyrinth, Christian faiths to the assistant chapJewish to Muslim lain is eager to emand everything in phasize that Etown’s between. In light of is multifaith and this diversity, there open to all. While have been more atlabyrinths can be tempts by student religious for some, organizations to walking one does reach out and invite not have to be a people of various path to a personal faiths through difGod. It can just be ferent activities. a way to relax. The Labyrinth, “It prov i d e s hosted by the a sacred space or Chaplain’s Office, just a getaway for is one of these new students. You can interfaith activities. practice mindfulMost students are ness while walking unaware of what it. Sometimes if I try a labyrinth is and to meditate or relax what the experience at Etown offers Photo: Matthew P. Butera while just sitting, I them. “Labyrinths Elizabethtown College’s labyrinth, modeled after the Chartres labyrinth, consists worry about sleepare a kind of walk- of a large canvas with a winding path in purple. The Labyrinth is held in the M&M ing. I tend to be able to focus when I’m ing meditation and Mars room in Leffler Chapel every Thursday from 4 to 6 p.m. doing something,” they are like mazes, Labyrinths date back to Ro- patterned center and then leads Shorner-Johnson shared. but there is only one path in and Senior Laura Miller explained one path out. It’s a guided path man times, when Romans carved the walker back out. Etown’s own labyrinth is that she goes to the Labyrinth that allows walkers to get closer the circular paths onto rocks. to God or just to themselves,” They were then adopted by vari- modeled after the Chartres as an escape. “I’ve been coming explained Assistant Chaplain ous faiths, including Christian labyrinth. It is a large canvas since last semester. It’s just a break sects, who often placed them piece that, when rolled out, re- from everyday life,” she said. Amy Shorner-Johnson.
The Labyrinth began last semester and is held on Sunday nights, but this semester it was switched to Thursday afternoons.“We wanted it to be more interfaith,” ShornerJohnson said. “Having it during the week makes it more inviting toward everyone.”
on church floors. Depending on the faith, labyrinths could be walked on the knees for penance or walked as a substitute for a pilgrimage to Jerusalem. One of the most famous labyrinths is in the Chartres Cathedral in Paris, France; the labyrinth is a circular maze, which leads into a
Senior Amanda McGeary, a first time attendee, came to earn Called to Lead points. “It was calming and quiet. It was just nice,” she said. Another first time Labyrinth walker was impressed with the fulfillment of the slogan that drew him in. “I saw the poster in the BSC that said, ‘Walk your worries away,’ and I thought, ‘What’s the worst that could happen?’ Well, it worked—I don’t have any worries anymore,” he explained. The Labyrinth experience offers a few quiet hours for students to focus simply on themselves or on getting close to the God in which they personally believe. Music is played during the experience, but it is non-denominational; the CDs vary from Native American chants to simple nature sounds. The music changes from week to week. The walk can take as long or as short as the walker desires, depending on what they are contemplating. “Just setting some time, whether to meditate, pray or think, can turn the profane into the sacred,” Fettro said, referencing Emile Durkheim’s dichotomy of the sacred and profane. The Labyrinth is held every Thursday from 4 to 6 p.m. in the M&M Mars room in Leffler Chapel. It is open to all who wish to attend.
Brittany’s Hope brings supplies to Vietnamese orphans S. Alexandra Ward Staff Writer
n Vietnam, children who are as young as age 14 are “aging out” of their orphanages, meaning they are forced to leave those orphanages and fend for themselves on the streets with only the clothes on their backs. This year, Elizabethtown College students will be helping to combat this growing issue by volunteering for the Sunflower Project, a humanitarian program within the Brittany’s Hope Foundation which provides aid to orphans with special needs. Yesterday, from 3 to 7 p.m., Etown students attended an in-warehouse service project hosted by Brittany’s Hope at the DAS Distributors Warehouse, located at 48 Industrial Rd. in Elizabethtown, Pa. The volunteers filled 400 duffel bags with essential supplies such as sandals, blankets and first aid kits. In addition, some of the volunteers will be traveling to Vietnam to personally deliver the duffel bags to the children who need them. The students will make the trip accompanied by Assistant Professor of
Molecular Biology Dr. Jodi Yorty and ally present them on their service trip September and paid just over $3,000, Professor of Social Work Dr. Peggy to Vietnam in May. which covers everything including airfare. McFarland. The team will be gone from “The students who are helping are a Brittany’s Hope Foundation is a nonMay 23 to June 8, 2011. Students embark part of the Social Work Student Associa- profit organization that helps abandoned on this trip every two chi ldren f ind years and this will be adoptive parents the third time Etown through childhas participated. Acspecific grants. cording to McFarland, Brittany’s Hope t he c urrent group also works to imconsists of 20 students prove the lives and 13 adults. of those orphans The Sunflower bags through humanwill be packaged and itarian efforts. prepared for shipment “This is the at the DAS warehouse. first time that “After we finish packing Brittany’s Hope the bags we will ship has been inthem over to Vietnam volved in this and distribute them particular type of Image: brittanyshope.org project, so we are after we arrive in the country to a number of Brittany’s Hope Foundation provides aid to orphans with special needs, such very excited to different orphanages,” as those pictured above. Feb. 16, Elizabethtown College students attended an help these young McFarland explained. in-warehouse service project to assist the foundation. people,” McFarBecause of the supland said. port from the local community, all of tion, students who are going on the VietReflecting on the College’s mission to the needed supplies have been gathered nam trip and students who are working on teach through service learning, she added, and are now waiting to be delivered in service learning hours,” McFarland said. “It seemed like a natural connection for time for the Etown students to personParticipants signed up for the trip in the College and Brittany’s Hope.”
Etownian Issue 14 - February 17, 2011