Religious Holidays: Policy and Calendar

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Below find a memo sent from the University Provost and the University Chaplain to all entering students explaining Lehigh University's "Accommodation Policy" regarding religious holidays.  A calendar of religious holidays follows the policy statement. 


Religious Holidays

 AND WHAT THEY MEAN TO YOU
AS A STUDENT AT  LEHIGH

Lehigh University extends hospitality to all persons regardless of race, religion, ethnicity, sexual orientation, economic or social background, and the Religious Accommodation policy expresses the University’s respect for diversity in religious matters.

Although non-sectarian, Lehigh University honors the free exercise of religion. People from a wide variety of religious traditions live and work at Lehigh, and the University acknowledges that the demands of religious observance in some traditions may cause conflicts with classroom and work schedules. Like many other colleges and universities, Lehigh has adopted a policy to accommodate those who encounter conflicts between the demands of religious observance and the demands of work or study. This "accommodation policy" acknowledges the right of those who live and work and study at Lehigh to engage in religious observances, and the University is pledged to honor the exercise of that right.

This accommodation policy governs religious holidays. The university policy is to support any member of the Lehigh community who requests an absence due to the demands of religious holiday observance. Of course, nothing in this policy exempts a student from meeting course requirements or completing assignments, so the student will have to negotiate with the instructor any make-up work.

Faculty should be aware that in the fall semester students from various traditions may request accommodations as they refrain from work or ordinary secular activities, and this may include time spent traveling home for holiday observance.  How specific holidays are observed varies within traditions and even among families, and as a courtesy to the campus we note Jewish holidays that might affect the regular work and study activities of members of our community.  Please note that Jewish holidays begin the evening before the listed date, at sundown, and include important observances during those evenings.

Accommodations are to be dealt with on the basis of individual requests from students. Recall that religious holidays are numerous, and no holiday is privileged above another for the purposes of the Lehigh policy. For more information you may consult the calendar of religious holidays found on this website (see below). 

If you encounter a schedule conflict with your course work due to the demands of religious observance, here is what you should do:

 1.  Talk  with your instructor and indicate that you will be absent from class due to observance of religious holidays.

 2.  Arrange with the instructor to complete assignments.

 3.  If you run into difficulties, including a refusal to grant you an excused absence, please call the University Chaplain, Dr. Lloyd Steffen, at x83877 or e-mail him at lhs1.  The  Chaplain will speak with the faculty person, explain the accommodation policy adopted by the University and enforced by the Provost, and work to resolve any difficulties.

Lehigh’s Religious Accommodation Policy is published in the Student Handbook and all students have access to an online copy. Any questions about the Religious Accommodation policy should be directed to the University Chaplain, Rev. Dr. Lloyd Steffen (lhs1@lehigh.edu).

Thank you in advance for your continued cooperation in abiding by this policy.
 

_________________________                ___________________________ 
Patrick V. Farrell                                         Lloyd Steffen 
Provost                                                       University Chaplain 




 

        Religious Holidays  2019

 
 

JANUARY - 2019

1
Mary, Mother of God - Catholic Christian
Feast Day of St Basil - Orthodox Christian
Gantan-sai (New Years) - Shinto
Feast of the Holy Name of Jesus - Orthodox Christian

5
Twelfth Night - Christian
Guru Gobindh Singh birthday - Sikh

6
Epiphany - Christian
Feast of the Epiphany (Theophany) - Orthodox Christian
Dia de los Reyes (Three Kings Day) - Christian
Nativity of Christ - Armenian Orthodox

7
Feast of the Nativity ** - Orthodox Christian

8
Feast of the Holy Family - Catholic Christian

13
Maghi - Sikh
Baptism of the Lord Jesus - Christian

17
Blessing of the Animals - Hispanic Catholic Christian

18-25
Week of Prayer for Christian Unity - Christian

19
Timkat - Ethiopian Orthodox Christian

20
World Religion Day - Baha'i
Tu BiShavat * - Jewish

21-23
Mahayana New Year ** - Buddhist

25
Conversion of St. Paul - Christian

FEBRUARY - 2019

2
Candlemas - Presentation of Christ in the Temple - Christian
Imbolc - Lughassad * - Wicca/Pagan - Northern and Southern hemispheres
Saint Brighid of Kildare - Celtic Christian

3
St. Blaze Day - Christian
Setsebun-sai (beginning of spring) - Shinto
Four Chaplains Sunday - Interfaith

5
Chinese New Year - Confucian, Daoist, Buddhist

8
Nirvana Day - Buddhism

10
Cheesefare Sunday - Orthodox Christian

12
Triodion - Orthodox Christian

14
St. Valentine's Day - Christian

15
Nirvana Day ** - Buddhist - Jain

17
Triodion begins - Orthdox Christian

26
Intercalary Days begin - Baha'i

MARCH - 2019

1
St. David of Wales - Christian
Intercalary Days end - Baha'i

2 - 20
Nineteen Day Fast * - Baha'i

3
Meatfare Sunday - Orthodox Christian
Transfiguration Sunday - Christian

5
Shrove Tuesday - Christian

6
Ash Wednesday - Lent begins- Christian

10
Orthodox Sunday - Orthodox Christian

11
Clean Monday - Great Lent begins - Orthodox Christian

13
Birthday of L. Ron Hubbard - Scientology

17
St. Patrick's Day - Christian

19
St. Joseph's Day - Christian

20
Equinox
Ostara - Mabon * - Wicca/Pagan Northern and Southern hemispheres

21
Norooz (New Year) - Persian/Zoroastrian
Naw-Rúz (New Year) * - Baha'i
Hola Mohalla - Sikh
Magha Puja Day ** - Buddhist
Lord's Evening Meal - Jehovah's Witness Christian
Purim * - Jewish

25
Annunciation of the Blessed Virgin Mary - Christian

28
Khordad Sal (Birth of Prophet Zarathushtra) ** - Zoroastrian

APRIL - 2019

3
Laylat al Miraj * - Islam

9
Mahavir Jayanti ** - Jain

14
Baisakhi (Vaisakhi) - Sikh
Palm Sunday - Christian

17
Orthodox Sunday - Orthodox Christian

18
Maundy Thursday - Christian

19-21
Theravadin New Year ** - Buddhist

19
Good Friday - Christian

20-27
Pesach * - Jewish

20
Lazarus Saturday - Orthodox Christian

21
Easter - Christian
First Day of Ridvan * - Baha'i
Lailat al Bara'ah * - Islam
Palm Sunday - Orthodox Christian

23
St. George's Day - Christian

26
Holy Friday - Orthodox Christian

28
Pascha - Easter - Orthodox Christian

29
Ninth Day of Ridvan - Baha'i

30
St. James the Great Day - Orthodox Christian

MAY - 2019

1
Beltane - Samhain * - Wicca/Pagan  Northern and Southern hemispheres

2
Last day of Ridvan *  - Baha'i
National Day of Prayer USA - Interfaith
Yom HaShoah - Jewish

3
Saints Philip & James - Christian

6
Ramadan begins * - Islam

9
Yom Ha'Atzmaut * - Jewish

18
Visakha Puja - Buddha Day ** - Buddhist

23
Declaration of the Bab * - Baha'i
Lag B'Omer * - Jewish

29
Ascension of Baha'u'llah * - Baha'i

30
Ascension of Jesus - Christian

JUNE - 2019

1
Laylat al Kadr * - Islam

5-7
Eid al Fitr * - Islam

6
Ascension of Jesus - Orthodox Christian

9
St. Columba of Iona - Celtic Christian
Pentecost - Christian

9-10
Shavuot * - Jewish

15
Saint Vladimir Day - Christian

16
Guru Arjan Martyrdom - Sikh
Trinity Sunday - Christian

19
New Church Day - Swedenborgian Christian

20
Corpus Christi - Catholic Christian

21
Solstice
Litha - Yule * - Wicca/Pagan Northern and Southern hemispheres

22
First Nations Day - Canadian Native People

23
All Saints - Orthodox Christian

28
Sacred Heart of Jesus - Catholic Christian

29
Feast Day of Saints Peter and Paul - Christian

JULY - 2019

9
Martyrdom of the Bab * - Baha'i

11
St Benedict Day - Catholic Christian

13-15
Obon (Ulambana) ** - Buddhist/Shinto 

15
St. Vladimir the Great Day - Orthodox Christian

16
Asalha Puja Day ** - Buddhist

24
Pioneer Day- Mormon Christian

25
St. James the Great Day - Christian

AUGUST - 2019

1
Lammas - Christian
Lughnassad - Imbolc * - Wicca/Pagan Northern and Southern hemispheres
Fast in Honor of Holy Mother of Jesus - Orthodox Christian

6
Transfiguration of the Lord - Orthodox Christian

10
Tish'a B'av - Jewish
Waqf al Arafa * Islam

12-15
Eid al Adha * - Islam

15
Assumption of Blessed Virgin Mary - Catholic Christian
Dormition of the Theotokos - Orthodox Christian

23
Krishna Janmashtami  ** - Hindu

29
Beheading of St. John the Baptist - Christian

SEPTEMBER - 2019

1
Ecclesiastical year begins - Orthodox Christian
Hijra - New Year * - Islam

3
Paryushana Parva * - Jain

8
Nativity of Virgin Mary - Christian

10
Ashura * - Islam

14
Elevation of the Life Giving Cross (Holy Cross) - Christian

23
Equinox
Mabon - Ostara * - Wicca  Northern and Southern hemispheres

27
Meskel - Ethiopian Orthodox Christian

29
Michael and All Angels - Christian

30-October 1
Rosh Hashanah * - Jewish

OCTOBER - 2019

4
St Francis Day - Catholic Christian
Blessing of the Animals - Christian

8
Dasara  ** - Hindu

9
Yom Kippur * - Jewish

14-20
Sukkot * - Jewish

14
Thanksgiving - Canada - Interfaith

18
St. Luke, Apostle & Evangelist - Christian

20
Birth of the Báb * - Baha'i
Installation of Scriptures as Guru Granth - Sikh

21
Shemini Atzeret * - Jewish

22
Simchat Torah * - Jewish

27
Christ the King - Christian
Diwali - Sikh - Hindu - Jain

28
Milvian Bridge Day - Christian
Jain New Year - Jain

29
Reformation Day - Protestant Christian

31
All Hallows Eve - Christian
Reformation Day - Protestant Christian

NOVEMBER - 2019

1
All Saints Day - Christian
Samhain - Beltane * - Wicca/Pagan Northern and Southern hemispheres

2
All Souls Day - Catholic Christian

10
Mawlid an Nabi * - Islam

12
Birth of Baha'u'llah * - Baha'i
Birthday of Guru Nanak Dev Sahib - Sikh

15
Nativity Fast begins - ends Dec. 24 - Orthodox Christian

23
Thanksgiving - Interfaith

24
Martyrdom of Guru Tegh Bahdur - Sikh

26
Christ the King - Christian
Day of the Covenant * - Baha'i

28
Ascension of  'Abdu'l-Baha * - Baha'i
Thanksgiving - Interfaith USA

30
St. Andrew's Day - Christian

DECEMBER - 2019

1-24
Advent - Christian

6
Saint Nicholas Day - Christian

8
Bodhi Day  (Rohatsu) - Buddhism
Immaculate Conception of Mary - Catholic Christian

12
Feast day - Our Lady of Guadalupe - Catholic Christian

16-25
Posadas Navidenas - Hispanic Christian

21
Solstice
Yule - Christian
Yule - Litha * - Wicca/Pagan Northern and Southern hemispheres

23-30
Hanukkah - Jewish

24
Christmas Eve - Christian

25
Christmas * - Christian
Feast of the Nativity ** - Orthodox Christian

26
Zarathosht Diso (Death of Prophet Zarathushtra) ** - Zoroastrian
St Stephen's Day - Christian

27
Saint John - Apostle and Evangelist - Christian

28
Holy Innocents - Christian

29
Holy Family - Catholic Christian

31
Watch Night - Christian

Notes:
1. * Holy days usually begin at sundown the day before this date. 
2. ** Local or regional customs may use a variation of this date.