An Inside Look Daemen's Interfaith Thanksgiving Service
By Emily Stoll
Where can you find a mime, Abraham Lincoln, a gospel choir, and prayers all in one place? At Daemen’s Interfaith Thanksgiving Service, of course.
The service, which was held on Thursday, Nov. 18, was a great opportunity for students to share their own religious backgrounds while learning about and embracing others’ beliefs. The INSIGHT caught up with Rev. Cassandra Salter-Smith, director of Daemen’s Campus Ministry, as she saw guests out of Wick’s Alumni Lounge after the service.
“I think that the service was wonderful,” she says. Rev Salter-Smith was pleased that so many people attended. Several students even invited friends and relatives. Throughout the week, there were also plentiful donations for Cornerstone Manor, a women and children’s homeless shelter, and the Buffalo City Mission, a men’s homeless shelter.
Prior to the service, students contacted Rev. Salter-Smith to volunteer to participate. Prayers were shared, Abraham Lincoln’s Thanksgiving Proclamation was recited, Voices of Zion sang, and even a mime performed. Many students and staff put a lot of hard work into the service.
When asked about Voices of Zion, Rev Salter-Smith replied, “I think that they did a wonderful job.” This was the premiere performance for the choir, which, according to Yolanda Shaw, has been preparing since September. Shaw says the choir normally rehearses weekly, or twice a week when an event is approaching, and was excited to finally get out there and perform.
“It’s the best we sound,” says one of the choir members in regards to their performance at the service. It’s also “a lot of hard work,” but it’s easy to tell from the smiles on their faces that they feel every moment is worth it. “They love singing,” says Rev. Salter-Smith.
From Voices of Zion and their wonderful soloists, to the mime’s expressive, moving performance, and everything in- between, the service was very entertaining and educational. It was well worth the time. After all, where else can you find such diverse talents and traditions all together?