With November giving way to December, the University commenced its month-long series of Christmas festivities, collectively called Animo Christmas!, with an opening program held last November 29 at the Cory Aquino Democratic Space. Themed Pasko ay Pag-Ibig, the program culminated in the lighting of the DLSU Christmas Tree and a concert to entertain members of the Lasallian community throughout the night.
Bells ringing and tree lighting
A month since their transfer from the De La Salle-College of St. Benilde, the University finally unveiled the Carillon Bells in their new site in front of St. Joseph Hall. The bells, which commemorate the death of 16 Lasallian Brothers during the Japanese occupation, were formally blessed in a solemn ceremony with the Lasallian community in witness. This was followed by their first ringing, symbolizing the start of the University’s Christmas celebration.
University Chaplain Fr. Dante Funelas officiated the eucharistic celebration that followed at the Cory Aquino Democratic Space, centering on the Christian nature of the celebration. University employees and staff, along with representatives from the DLSU-Parents of University Students Organization and the La Salle Dance Company-Street, took part in short performances as the gathered audience joined a salu-salo dinner. The Lasallian Youth Orchestra serenaded the assemblage.
University Chancellor Br. Bernard Oca FSC and Vice President for Lasallian Mission Fritzie de Vera joined University President Br. Raymundo Suplido FSC in lighting up the Christmas Tree, a fixture of the University’s Christmas celebrations since 2012, now adorned with white lanterns of various sizes.
Suplido outlined the symbolisms carried by the DLSU Christmas Tree and its significance to the Lasallian community, explaining that “the red symbolizes, on the one hand, blood, sacrifice, but it is also a symbol of love.” He also went on to say that the three hearts represent the three Latin words found on the University seal, whereas the big star signifies both “the star of heaven” and the Lasallian star.
Together with the Christmas Tree, the facade of the St. La Salle Hall was lit up brightly in red and green, highlighting the festive mood of the evening.
To top off the evening, performances were also held at the Cory Aquino Democratic Space in a concert. SoundCloud artist Beni Mateo began the lineup on stage with his renditions of Christmas songs, followed by Maxx Pampolina, Chairperson of University Student Government (USG) Affairs, who serenaded the audience with her cover of Last Christmas by Wham!.
The audience was also greeted with performances from local acts Any Name’s Okay and Leanne and Naara, with the former performing their original hit song Clouds and the latter mesmerizing the audience with a cover of Nina’s Someday.
The rest of December will be filled with a myriad of activities prepared by different sectors of the University. The USG, through the Office of the Executive Treasurer, will hold the annual Christmas Bazaar 2019 from December 9 to 12, with concessionaires setting up shop across campus.
A series of Christmas parties dedicated to children, external services personnel, and University staff will be held on December 14, 15, and 16, respectively.
A regular Misa de Gallo service will be held at the Cory Aquino Democratic Space from December 16 to 24. A Christmas Eve mass will also be held on December 24 to culminate the season’s celebrations.