The religion department held its Second Annual Religion Department Dinner at Café Maddie’s on Wednesday September 11. The event was open to all students in the Religion Major.

Faculty and students gathered together sharing stories, praising God, enjoying pizza and ice cream on a beautiful, sunny evening. This event provided students with the opportunity to engage in conversation with their professors and interact with other students in the program.

Rebecca Hayner, a junior studying Business and Intercultural studies, enthusiastically describes her experience by saying, “I felt good. The restaurant that we were at, Café Maddie’s, […] is right on the beach. It was a beautiful day and we got to sit outside and just hang out. The scenery was beautiful, the weather was beautiful. I felt good, it felt nice to be there like relaxing.”

Students were able to get acquainted with their professors, which was the primary goal of this event. It allowed them to see their professors as more of a person than just a professor. Hayner describes this point by saying, “[…] I got to talk to students that I wouldn’t have if I had just gone to the [cafeteria] that night. As far as adults go, I got to talk to Stephen Michael, who is Julene [Tegerstrand]’s husband, and that’s probably one of the people that I know the least that was there. It was nice.”

Corey Whatley, a freshman studying Social Work and Intercultural studies, described his experience as, “Really cool,” as he says, “I really liked Julene and I got to talk to Lynne a lot and our stories are a lot of the same kind of things.”

On a day like 9/11 that is known for destruction and sadness, the Religion Department was able to come together and make something truly beautiful.

This dinner also shed light on the upcoming Religion and Culture Spiritual Formation Retreat. This will allow students to grow in their faith, get to know their professors on an even more personal level, and build relationships with other students in the department. The retreat will take place September 27 through the 29.