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Religious Holidays: Policy and Calendar

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 




Other Policies Regarding Religious Life at Lehigh
    

The University Chaplain's Office is responsible for all issues regarding Religious Life at Lehigh.  This designation of responsibility has been made by Lehigh University, a private institution of higher learning with no sectarian bias.  The University Chaplain, the Rev. Dr. Lloyd Steffen, reports to the Provost of the University in his role as University Chaplain. Questions about religious group activities, aid with programs, and other information or assistance should be directed to the University Chaplain's Office at x83877.  To assist students and visitors to campus, the following policy guidelines are observed:

1.  Questions regarding Religious Life, including those arising from religious groups and clubs, should be directed to the Chaplain's Office.

2.  Groups that invite visiting clergy or other religious professionals to campus should inform the University Chaplain's Office so that these visitors may receive a formal invitation from the University and thus be present on campus in conjunction with a religious activity.  As a private institution, Lehigh University could request that individuals not officially invited to campus be asked to leave.

3.  Religious materials may be distributed on campus, but the mode of distribution must be worked out in consultation with the Chaplain's Office.  The University observes a non-intrusion policy with respect to living quarters.  Religious group advisers must meet with students elsewhere than in residence halls, fraternities and sororities; and student residences on campus are not to be entered for purposes of distributing religious materials by any advisor or off-campus person.  The Chaplain's Office can assist in the effort to distribute materials in a non-intrusive way and arrange for alternative spaces for meetings, including the Dialogue Center.

4.  Reserving space on campus for religious life activities must be made through the Chaplain's Office.  The Dialogue Center at 661 Taylor Street is the preferred space for clubs that wish to meet for religious life activities, and requests for other space on campus must be made through the Chaplain's Office.  The Dialogue Center at 661 Taylor Street is available to religious life advisers for meetings with students, and the Dialogue Center may be scheduled for religious group meetings by contacting Terri Ball-Nicholas at 610-758-3877 or tlb311.

5.  Funding support requests for group events must be made through the Chaplain's Office prior to purchase, registration or commitment.  Forms are located on the "Document" page of the Chaplain's Office website.  Submit completed Funding Support Request Forms for approval to Terri Ball-Nicholas, The Dialogue Center at 661 Taylor Street, 610-758-3877 or tlb311@lehigh.edu.


        Religious Holidays  2018

(from www.interfaithcalendar.org)

JANUARY   2018

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

2-4
·         Mahayana New Year - Buddhist

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
·         Baptism of the Lord Jesus - Christian

8
·         Feast of the Holy Family - Catholic Christian

13
·         Maghi - Sikh

17
·         Blessing of the Animals - Hispanic Catholic Christian

18-25
·         Week of Prayer for Christian Unity - Christian

19
·         Timkat - Ethiopian Orthodox Christian

21
·         World Religion Day - Baha'i
·         Triodion begins - Orthodox Christian

22
·         Vasant Panchami ** - Hindu

25
·         Conversion of St. Paul - Christian

31
·         Tu BiShvat * - Jewish

FEBRUARY   2018

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

3
·         St. Blaze Day - Christian
·         Setsebun Sai - Shinto

4
·         Four Chaplains Sunday - Interfaith

8
·         Nirvana Day - Buddhism

11
·         Cheesefare Sunday - Orthodox Christian
·         Transfiguration Sunday - Christian

12
·         Triodion - Orthodox Christian
·         Clean Monday - Lent begins - Orthodox Christian

13
·         Shrove Tuesday - Christian

14
·         St. Valentine's Day - Christian
·         Maha Shivaratri ** - Hindu
·         Ash Wednesday - Lent begins- Christian

15
·         Nirvana Day ** - Buddhist - Jain

16
·         Chinese New Year - Confucian, Daoist, Buddhist

18
·         Orthodox Sunday - Orthodox Christian

26
·         Intercalary Days - Baha'i

MARCH   2018

1
·         Purim * - Jewish
·         St. David of Wales - Christian

2 - 20
·         Nineteen Day Fast * - Baha'i

3
·         Holi ** - Hindu

6
·         Meatfare Sunday - Orthodox Christian

17
·         St. Patrick's Day - Christian

18
·         New Year ** - Hindu

18-26
·         Ramayana ** - Hindu

19
·         St. Joseph's Day - Christian

21
·         Equinox
·         Norooz (New Year) - Persian/Zoroastrian
·         Naw-Rúz (New Year) * - Baha'i
·         Ostara - Mabon * - Wicca/Pagan Northern and Southern hemispheres

25
·         Annunciation of the Blessed Virgin Mary - Orthodox Christian
·         Palm Sunday - Christian

26
·         Ramanavami ** - Hindu

28
·         Khordad Sal (Birth of Prophet Zaranthushtra) ** - Zoroastrian

29
·         Maundy Thursday - Christian

30
·         Good Friday - Christian

31-April 7
·         Pesach * - Jewish

31
·         Lazarus Saturday - Orthodox Christian
·         Hanuman Jayanti ** - Hindu
·         Lord's Evening Meal - Jehovah's Witness Christian
·         Magha Puja Day ** - Buddhist

April 2018

1
·         Easter - Christian
·         Palm Sunday - Orthodox Christian

3
·         Mahavir Jayanti ** - Jain

6
·         Holy Friday - Orthodox Christian

8
·         Pascha - Easter- Orthodox Christian

12
·         Yom HaShoah * - Jewish

13
·         Lailat al Miraj * - Islam

14
·         Baisakhi (Vaisakhi) - Sikh

19
·         Yom Ha'Atzmaut * - Jewish

21
·         First Day of Ridvan * - Baha'i

23
·         St. George's Day - Christian

29
·         Ninth Day of Ridvan - Baha'i
·         Visakha Puja - Buddha Day ** - Buddhist

30
·         St. James the Great Day - Orthodox Christian

30-May 2
·         Theravadin New Year - Buddhist

MAY 2018

1
·         Beltane - Samhain *- Wicca/Pagan Northern and Southern hemispheres
·         Lailat al bara'ah * - Islam

2
·         Last day of Ridvan *  - Baha'i

3
·         Saints Philip & James - Christian
·         National Day of Prayer USA - Interfaith
·         Lag B'Omer * Jewish

10
·         Ascension of Jesus - Christian

16-June 15
·         Ramadan * **- Islam

17
·         Ascension of Jesus - Orthodox Christian

20-21
·         Shavuot * - Jewish

20
·         Pentecost - Christian

23
·         Declaration of the Bab * - Baha'i

27
·         Pentecost - Orthodox Christian
·         Trinity Sunday - Christian

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

31
·         Corpus Christi- Catholic Christian

JUNE   2018

2
·         All Saints - Orthodox Christian

8
·         Sacred Heart of Jesus - Catholic Christian

9
·         St. Columba of Iona - Celtic Christian

11
·         Laylat al Kadr * - Islam

15-17
·         Eid al Fitr - Ramadan ends * - Islam

15
·         Saint Vladimir Day - Christian

16
·         Guru Arjan martyrdom - Sikh

19
·         New Church Day - Swedenborgian Christian

20
·         Waqf al Arafa - Hajj Day * - Islam

21
·         Solstice
·         First Nations Day - Canadian Native People
·         Litha - Yule * - Wicca/Pagan Northern and Southern hemispheres

29
·         Feast Day of Saints Peter and Paul - Christian

JULY   2018

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

22
·         Tish'a B'av * - Jewish

24
·         Pioneer Day- Mormon Christian

25
·         St. James the Great Day - Christian

27
·         Asalha Puja Day ** - Buddhist

AUGUST   2018

1
·         Lammas - Christian
·         Fast in Honor of Holy Mother of Jesus - Orthodox Christian

2
·         Lughnassad - Imbolc * - Wicca/Pagan  Northern and Southern Hemispheres

6
·         Transfiguration of the Lord - Orthodox Christian

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

22-25
·         Eid al Adha * - Islam

29
·         Beheading of St. John the Baptist - Christian
·         Raksha Bandhan ** - Hindu

SEPTEMBER 2018

1
·         Religious year begins - Orthodox Christian

3
·         Krishna Janmashtami ** - Hindu

8
·         Nativity of Virgin Mary - Christian

10-11
·         Rosh Hashannah * - Jewish

12
·         Hijra - New Year * - Islam

13
·         Ganesh Chaturthi ** - Hindu

14
·         Elevation of the Life Giving Cross (Holy Cross) - Christian
·         Paryushana Parva ** - Jain

19
·         Yom Kippur * - Jewish

21
·         Ashura * - Islam    

22
·         Equinox
·         Mabon - Ostara* - Wicca  Northern and Southern hemispheres

24-31
·         Sukkot * - Jewish

27
·         Meskal - Ethiopian Orthodox Christian

29
·         Michael and All Angels - Christian

OCTOBER   2018

1
·         Shemini Atzeret * - Jewish

2
·         Simchat Torah * - Jewish

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

8
·         Thanksgiving - Canada - Interfaith

9-16
·         Navaratri ** - Hindu

18
·         St. Luke, Apostle & Evangelist - Christian

19
·         Dasara ** - Hindu

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

28
·         Reformation Day ** - Protestant Christian
·         Milvian Bridge Day - Christian

31
·         All Hallows Eve - Christian
·         Reformation Day - Protestant Christian

NOVEMBER   2018

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

2
·         All Souls Day - Catholic Christian

7
·         Diwali - Sikh - Jain - Hindu

8
·         Jain New Year ** - Jain
·         Vikram New Year ** - Hindu

12
·         Birth of Baha'u'llah * - Baha'i

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

21
·         Mawlid an Nabi * - Islam

22
·         Thanksgiving USA - Interfaith

23
·         Guru Nanak Dev Sahib birthday - Sikh

25
·         Christ the King - Christian

26
·         Day of the Covenant * - Baha'i

28
·         Ascension of  'Abdu'l-Baha * - Baha'i

30
·         St. Andrew's Day - Christian

DECEMBER   2018

2-24
·         Advent - Christian

3-10
·         Hanukkah * - Jewish

6
·         Saint Nicholas Day - Christian

8
·         Bodhi Day  (Rohatsu) - Buddhist
·         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
·         Saint Thomas the Apostle - Christian

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

28
·         Holy Innocents - Christian

30
·         Holy Family - Catholic Christian

31
·         Watch Night - Christian