Cathedral Celebrates Kwanzaa

Cathedral hosted its annual Kwanzaa Celebration on Friday, January 13, in Synod Hall. It was a wonderful opportunity for the entire community to gather and celebrate Black culture, students, and families at the School. 

“Kwanzaa is a celebration of African-American people, created in the 1960s as a way to have African-Americans reconnect with their African heritage which was taken from them during slavery,” said Ms. Deja Williams, the organizer of the event. 

Ms. Williams explained that it was important to honor those who celebrate the holiday while also connecting it to our community in a uniquely Cathedral way. “There are Seven Principles that accompany Kwanzaa as guiding principles about how to live a rich life as a Black person,” Ms. Williams said, “and we tie those into our Core Values and talk to the students about those being guiding ideas that can be used in a similar way.”

Many students were given the opportunity to participate in the festivities and through collaboration with the Upper School Black Affinity Group, this came to life in the “Black Girl Magic” and “Black Boy Joy” poems shared in the program—a shared effort among Lower School, Upper School, and adult members of the community. 

It was truly a community effort to bring the event to life as Ms. Mannarino and Mr. Collazo organized amazing musical performances, and Ms. Valentine and Mr. Delacey helped students make beautiful handmade puppets and flags containing Adinkra and Kwanzaa symbols. 

Ms. Williams concluded by saying, “Getting the students involved, not just Black students but all students, in the understanding of Black culture is an important highlight of the Kwanzaa Ceremony.”

View photos of the celebration in the right-hand column.
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