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Skidmore College
Religious and Spiritual Life

From the Director:

I have found myself using the phrase "in the midst of the whirlwind" frequently to refer to how we are doing in the midst of pandemic, life transitions, local and international strife, and moments of blessing. In the scriptures the Tanakh/Old Testament there is a moment when the Divine speaks to Job out of a whirlwind and simultaneously reminds us that we are not divine or in control while also somehow offering comfort that there is such a force beyond us. In many traditions the force of wind is linked to life-giving breath; the Vedas tell us of Vayu, source of breath/prana and arbiter of wind's destructive or life-giving power. Whatever whirlwinds rage around you and those you hold dear may there also be a stillness, nurturing breath, and a comfort beyond understanding. And may there be the promise of blessing and winds of joy. With love,

Parker Diggory, Director of Religious and Spiritual Life

Congratulations to our graduates and blessings and peace to all our community! 

Summer 2020: 

  • Summer contact: The Office of Religious and Spiritual Life (ORSL) will be closed for much of June and July. We are available on a limited basis during the summer by email, and though responses may be delayed we will be happy to hear from you!
  • Time sensitive inquiries can be directed to the Office of Campus Life and Engagement
  • Updates on Skidmore College's policies for COVID-19 and additional campus contacts and information are available from the Skidmore homepage and here

Online meditation and resources:  Check out the Skidmore Mindfulness page for ways to pause and breathe, including guided meditations recorded by our own Jennifer Schmid-Fareed, Coordinator of Skidmore Mindfulness.  We will be adding more resources soon! 

Incoming and Current Students: 

To all of our students: Keep in touch with us and with each other. We will be finding ways to connect within and across religious and spiritual communities in the fall, regardless of how that has to happen. As always we are open to your ideas, leadership, questions, and feedback. What practices or programming has been helpful to you? What else would you like to see? What insights have you gained? Let us know! 

 

  

The Office of Religious and Spiritual Life (ORSL) provides opportunities for members of the Skidmore community to develop their religious and spiritual lives, which are an important part of the educational experience.

We encourage enriching dialogue, meaningful ritual and enduring friendships among people of all religious backgrounds.

We offer:

  • religious services
  • holiday observances
  • contemplative practices
  • speakers and lectures
  • educational programs
  • discussion groups
  • community-service opportunities
  • social-justice projects
  • club advising
  • individual spiritual counsel

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Contacting a chaplain or spiritual advisor

During the academic year, the ORSL staff are available to meet  with students (in person or online as possible)regardless of religious, spiritual or secular background. Affiliated advisors and local religious leaders from specific traditions are also available on and off campus. We are happy to help students connect with leaders and communities from their preferred tradition. 

Connect with the ORSL:

  • to discuss faith, spirituality and religion
  • to connect with faith communities on or off campus
  • for prayer or spiritual counsel
  • to plan events on campus of religious, interfaith, and/or spiritual interest
  • if you’re navigating a time of grief or transition
  • to talk about identity and community
  • when worried about a friend or loved one
  • just to talk

Set up a meeting (including online and phone meetings) with Parker, contact any of our staff.

Wilson Chapel

Wilson ChapelWilson Chapel is a beautiful space for worship and wonder, retreat and reflection. The space does not belong to any one tradition or religion and it can be transformed easily to fit specific ritual needs. When not scheduled for campus events, it is available to the Skidmore community for personal reflection and prayer. Events at the chapel include yoga, meditation, religious prayers and services, and events that explore many forms of spiritual and contemplative practice.

When not otherwise reserved, the chapel is normally open from around 6:30 a.m. to around 10:30 p.m. during the school year. Those interested in reserving Wilson Chapel for outside use, including weddings, should consult the External Facilities Rental information from the Skidmore College Scheduling Office. 

Spring 2020 Weekly schedule:

 

NOTE: This schedule is an example from the start of the Spring 2020 semester. We anticipate including similar programming online and in person as possible during the 2020-2021 academic year

Events are open to students, staff, and faculty unless otherwise noted. 

MONDAY

Christian Prayer
12:15–12:35 p.m. Mondays, Case Center 203, with Parker Diggory - varied traditions. All are welcome, whether prayer is a regular part of your practice or not. 

Mindfulness & Meditation
4-4:20pm, ICC - Case 208 every weekday. Take a break and take a breath. Open to all, regardless of experience or tradition.

Tea, Text, Torah 
4:30 pm, Case 202, Mondays and Thursdays with Martina Zobel. Stop by for a casual discussion of topics and texts related to Jewish tradition. All are welcome, regardless of religious background.  

 

TUESDAY

Mindfulness & Meditation
4-4:20pm, ICC - Case 208 every weekday. Take a break and take a breath. Open to all, regardless of experience or tradition.

Newman Club
8-9 pm every other Tuesday in Wilson Chapel beginning 1/28. General meeting for fellowship, fun, and planning. Newman Club is for students interested in Catholic life at Skidmore and is open to all. 

WEDNESDAY

Mindfulness & Meditation
4-4:20pm, ICC - Case 208 every weekday. Take a break and take a breath. Open to all, regardless of experience or tradition.

Interfaith Cafe
5-6pm Wednesdays, ICC - Case 208. Coffee, tea, snacks, talk. Just hang out or join the conversation. Topics to include: religion in the news, interfaith collaboration at Skidmore, campus events, secular identity, anti-religious bias, and more. Want to suggest a topic or plan a gathering? Let us know! Open to all regardless of religious or secular perspective. 

Zen Meditation
6:25–8:00 pm Wednesdays, Wilson Chapel. All are welcome. Meditation cushions and other supplies provided. Contact Holley Hodgins for more information.  

THURSDAY

Mindfulness & Meditation
4-4:20pm, ICC - Case 208 every weekday. Take a break and take a breath. Open to all, regardless of experience or tradition.

Tea, Text & Torah
4:30 pm Mondays and Thursdays, Case 202, with Martina Zobel. Stop by for a casual discussion of topics and texts related to Jewish tradition. All are welcome, regardless of religious background.  

 

FRIDAY

Jummah Prayer
Friday afternoons, Wilson Chapel, Khutba and Salat gatherings at 12:45 and 1:45, Chapel reserved for drop-in 12:30–3:30 pm, prayer rugs available on the shelves in the hallway to the right as you enter the building.

Mindfulness & Meditation
4-4:20pm, ICC - Case 208 every weekday. Take a break and take a breath. Open to all, regardless of experience or tradition. 

Shabbat Services
5:15–6:15 pm Fridays, Wilson Chapel
Student-led egalitarian services with Skidmore Hillel. All are welcome.  

Shabbat Dinner
6:30 p.m., second floor of the dining hall unless otherwise announced. Free for students regardless of mealplan. 
RSVP via Hillel on SkidSync

Skidmore Christian Fellowship—Ignite!
7 pm, ICC - Case 208, large group gathering, contact Christian Fellowship on SkidSync for small group and Bible Study gatherings. All are welcome.  

SATURDAY

Yoga
5–6:15 pm Saturdays and Sundays, Wilson Chapel - all levels, mats provided. This gathering approaches the practice from the deep sources of yogic tradition and is open to all regardless of religious, spiritual, or secular perspective. 

SUNDAY

Quaker Gatherings
3–4 pm, Wilson Chapel
every other Sunday beginning January 26th, with members of local meetings. Gatherings begin at 3 with fellowship, followed by unprogrammed worship. All are welcome. 

Yoga
5–6:15 pm Saturdays and Sundays, Wilson Chapel,  - all levels, mats provided. This gathering approaches the practice from the deep sources of yogic tradition and is open to all regardless of religious, spiritual, or secular perspective. 

...and more! Watch for postings about additional gatherings: holidays, club events, and more. Don't see something for your tradition or interest? Contact the ORSL to find out about additional options or starting something new. 

Schedule subject to change. See SkidSync or contact us for information or to find out about additional opportunities and local services.