three students frosting cakes for Community Supper
Students prepare dessert for a Religious Life Council Community Supper at the Middlebury Congregational Church.

The Scott Center sponsors and hosts numerous ongoing events throughout the year.  Join us for any and all that appeal to you, and be sure to check back often to see what’s new and coming up!

2021-22 Scott Center Events

Tuesday, May 17

Scott Center End-of-Year Dinner & Celebration  

46 South St.

hands raising glasses around a table spread with food

Join us as we celebrate the vitality of spiritual life at Middlebury with this catered vegetarian dinner.  If the weather is nice, we’ll have lawn games and dining al fresco.  RSVP to Ellen McKay Jewett, emckay@middlebury.edu.

every Tuesday, starting March 1

Faculty/Staff Meditation Group  

McCullough Reflection Space

drop of water creating ripples

Faculty/Staff Meditation Group

Faculty and staff are invited to this weekly sitting meditation group, hosted by Prof. Emily Proctor in conjunction with the Scott Center for Spiritual & Religious Life.  No experience is necessary; cushions and chairs provided.  Held each Tuesday, 12:05-12:45 EST. 

Every Wednesday; last gathering on May 18

Wakeful Wednesdays  

In-person at College Chapel, unless otherwise noted

poster with rocks in a bowl

Join Spiritual and Religious Life Dean Mark R. Orten for 20 minutes of quiet contemplation with reading and music for our times. Intentional silence and guided meditation will be interspersed with music and readings from secular worldviews and sacred traditions to open our awareness and to find strength and perspective for living during pandemical, political, racial, ecological and other upheavals.


 

Every Tuesday; last meeting on May 10

The SlowDown  

The Crest Room, McCullough

collage with vintage cameras

Take a moment to slow it down and use your creative mind!
 
Each week we’ll have materials for different projects — collaging on notebook covers and containers, origami, watercolors for illustrating poetry, etc.
 
We’ll be serving hot homemade chai and homemade cookies.

Sunday, May 8

Shmita: Learning Spiritually and Agriculturally from the Sabbatical Year  

The Knoll

aerial view of the gardens at the Knoll

The shmita, or sabbatical year, is a year of rest for the land and an economic resetting for society that occurred every seven years in the ancient Jewish calendar. Join us as Grace Oedel, Executive Director of Northeast Organic Farming Association of VT, Danielle Stillman, Rabbi and Associate Chaplain at Middlebury College, and Remi Welbel ‘22, co-founder of Zumwalt Acres Farm, discuss the ways that shmita can be applied today and what lessons are available from thinking about cycles of rest for the land and for ourselves.

The panel will be facilitated by Rebecca Kneale Gould, Associate Professor of Environmental Studies.

Following the discussion, weather permitting, we will enjoy flatbread and time to learn about about the shmita adjacent practices of the Knoll.

Rain location: MBH 104
Sponsored by: Environmental Affairs; Charles P. Scott Center for Spiritual and Religious Life; NEW PERENNIALS PROJECT

Saturday, May 7

Meditation Retreat with Emily Proctor  

46 South Street

bright green hosta leaves with droplets of water

Come take a relaxing breath as the semester ends at this one-day restorative mindfulness retreat, led by Professor Emily Proctor at the Scott Center.  We will learn and practice a variety of mindfulness meditation activities tuned toward relationship, play, nature, and silence, all with the intention of helping the nervous system to settle.  No previous experience with mindfulness is necessary; the workshop will be aimed both for those who are new to mindfulness and those who have had practice with it.
 
There are full day (9:30-3:30) and half day (9:30-12:50 or 12:10-3:30) options available.  Lunch will be provided to all participants.  Registration is required.  Registration will be capped at 18 participants for each half of the day.  Please register here by May 5, 2022.

 

May 2-7

Eid al Fitr Week Programming  

various locations

mosque entrance with mosaics

Eid al Fitr Prayer Service
Monday, May 2
Students meet at ADK at 7:30 am for transportation to South Burlington
After a robust Ramadan at the college, the Muslim Students Association will join the larger Muslim community of Vermont for the Eid al Fitr Service celebrating the completion of Ramadan! Prayer services will be hosted by the Islamic Society of Vermont in South Burlington. After prayer, students hope to spend time exploring food and sites in Burlington. 
 
Eid al Fitr Dinner Celebration
Tuesday, May 3, 7:30 pm at Coltrane Lounge
The Muslim Student Association is honored to host a larger Eid celebration with the Middlebury College community. We will have catered Lebanese food with a vegetarian option. Students must RSVP by reaching out to MSA co-president Abed Abbas: abdulrahmana@middlebury.edu
 
Senior Celebration and Gathering
Saturday, May 7, 5:00 pm at The Knoll
The Muslim Student Association will celebrate graduating MSA seniors and the end-of-the-semester at The Knoll over some food, good company, and hopefully a bonfire! Students must RSVP by reaching out to MSA co-president Abed Abbas: abdulrahmana@middlebury.edu
 

Events during Ramadan are listed below:
Chand Raat
Join us for a traditional gathering of decoration and celebration on the evening of April 2 before Ramadan! The Muslim Student Association (MSA) will prepare the prayer room starting 5:30 pm with lighting, decorations, and love.

Ross Dining Hall will offer halal entrees during iftar time throughout the month. The MSA prayer room in Forest Basement will be stocked with packaged food staples (i.e. fruit, yogurt, hummus, crackers, meal bars, milk, etc).

You are welcome to join the MSA to break the daily fast and pray maghrib a little after 7:20 pm each day, hopefully in Ross Fireplace Lounge.  After this, members will get iftar together at Ross. Congregational Isha will begin around 9pm every night during Ramadan. Tarawih prayers will begin shortly after that until around 10pm.

A game night is being planned for April 29th at 6:30pm.

As outlined by Middlebury College’s handbook, it is your right to take an absence for Eid al-Fitr. Students “should submit written notification of the pending religious holiday to his or her Commons dean at least one week before the holiday. The Commons dean will then inform the instructors of the student’s courses that the absence on the religious holiday will be regarded as an excused one. Under these circumstances, a student missing an examination will be permitted to take a makeup exam without penalty, and a student with a paper due on a religious holiday will be permitted to submit that paper on the day immediately following the holiday, again without penalty.”

Please reach out to Associate Chaplain and Muslim Advisor Saifa Hussain with any questions, sthussain@middlebury.edu

 

Saturday, May 7

Forest Retreat  

Spirit in Nature Interfaith Path Sanctuary, Ripton

forest scene with moss and pine needles

Join Middlebury Student Quakers for an afternoon of relaxation, reflection, and connection at the Spirit in Nature Interfaith Path Sanctuary in Ripton. 

We will begin with lunch, accompanied by an intention-setting ritual and expressions of presence and gratitude. After lunch, there will be opportunities to participate in yoga, qi-gong, walking meditations, forest bathing, water coloring, and self-guided wandering. Activities will be led by Spirit in Nature board members and student spiritual leaders. You will have a chance to explore the sacred circle, the labyrinth, and all of the SpIN trails. We will close the retreat by sharing reflections from the day around a fire and depart having made new connections and discoveries that will feed our spirits as we embark on the last few weeks of the semester.

No religious affiliation or experience required, all Middlebury students are welcome at this mind and heart-opening retreat. Transportation to the Spirit in Nature paths will be provided, please indicate if you need a ride on the registration form.  Click here to register.

Made possible with funding from the Religious Life Cluster Flex Fund.

Mondays and Wednesdays

Tai Chi Chuan with Nadine Canter Barnicle  

Coltrane Lounge

watercolor image of person in tai chi position

Nadine Canter Barnicle, the Community Engagement Specialist for New Perennials and a Visiting Scholar in the Environmental Studies Program, is teaching an introductory Tai Chi Chuan class this spring which is free to all Middlebury College faculty, staff, and students. The Scott Center is excited to be supporting this class along with the College’s Athletics Program, the Franklin Environmental Center at Hillcrest, and the Wellness Program. The first session of the class ran in February and March and was a great success; students, staff and faculty have been enjoying connecting on a regular basis through this practice.

The second session of the class begins on March 28th and will meet on Mondays & Wednesdays, 4:30 to 6 pm in Coltrane Lounge for the remainder of the semester. Please visit this site to learn more and to register for session 2.

 

Saturday, May 1

Sabbath on a Sunday Book Celebration  

132 Blinn Lane

poster with bold blue type and yellow sun

An interfaith gathering across the student and faculty community at Middlebury. Through discussion, dessert, and mingling we will come together to mark space and time, and discuss Abraham Joshua Heschel’s book, The Sabbath.  Please contact Yardena Gerwin ‘22.5 at ygerwin@middlebury.edu with questions.  Made possible with funding from the Religious LIfe Cluster Flex Fund.

Thursday, April 28

Yom HaShoah Ceremony  

Middlebury Chapel

candles of various heights in star of David

We will close the day of Yom HaShoah (Holocaust Remembrance Day) with a ceremony remembering those who were killed in the Holocaust and those who survived — using poetry, music, and personal stories. All are welcome.

Friday, April 22

Midd Humanists Interest Meeting  

Axinn 220

Da Vinci's sketch of man

Midd Humanists is a non-theistic, inquiry-based, and action-centered collective of Middlebury students united by humanist principles and practices.

Join us to consider forming a discussion practice that explores, shares, and engages with questions and issues large and small, local and global, with others, and with compassion, reason, humility, grief, and joy.

Hosted by Bill Vitek, the Scott Center’s new Humanist Affiliate Chaplain, Scholar in Residence, and Director of New Perennials, newperennials.org

Please contact wvitek@middlebury.edu if you have questions.

 

April 17, 2022

Easter Sunrise Service  

Alumni Stadium (rain location: Kirk Alumni Center)

sunrise with pink and orange sky over dark hills

All are welcome at this ecumenical Easter Sunrise Service held in Alumni Stadium at Youngman Field.  Local clergy will share the leadership of the service. Coffee and baked goods to follow at the Weybridge Congregational Church.

Friday, April 15, 2022

Passover Seder  

Redfield Proctor Dining Room

blue and white scalloped edge seder plate, with all components

Join us as we celebrate liberation from slavery in the annual Jewish ritual of the Passover Seder. We will eat ritual foods, ask and discuss questions, enjoy a festive meal together and feel as if we ourselves went out of Egypt. RSVP’s are required. Please RSVP here by April 8, 2022.

Wednesday, March 16

Purim Spiel the Musical!  

Hepburn Zoo

orange poster with colorful text, hamentaschen, masks

On Purim, Jews read the book of Esther, which tells the story of the unlikely rescue of the Jewish People from threat of total annihilation.  The holiday has a carnival atmosphere of dressing up in costumes and masks, giving gifts of food to friends and to those in need, and general celebration with food, drink, and putting on plays of an absurd nature.  This year Hillel presents a not-to-be-missed original musical production!

Thursday, March 17

Holi Color Run -- POSTPONED  

starting outside the FIC and moving to Battell Beach

holi color powders


Holi is a colorful and joyous Hindu festival that welcomes spring.  Referred to as the Festival of Colors, it is celebrated over two days with people throwing colorful powder and colored water.   

Come to a collaborative celebratory Color Run, sponsored by Middlebury’s South Asian Student Association and Hillel to celebrate both Purim and Holi, on Thursday, March 17th, 4:30-5:30 pm beginning outside the FIC near BiHall and moving to Battell Beach!  Be sure to wear old clothes that could get pretty much ruined by colored powders and liquids if you want to participate.  Or — wear an inverted plastic bag with holes for your head and arms!

 

Wednesday, March 2

Ash Wednesday services  

cross drawn in ashes

Several local Christian congregations are planning Ash Wednesday services.  We list here those that are within walking distance of campus.  Please contact these congregations directly if you have questions.

St. Mary’s Catholic Church
Adjacent to campus at 326 College St.
Services at 7:00 am and 12:05 pm

Middlebury Congregational Church
2 Main St., Middlebury
Service at 7:00 pm, both live-streamed on their website, and in-person

St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church
3 Main St., Middlebury
Services at noon and 7:00 pm
 

January 17-20, 2022

Martin Luther King Jr. Living Legacy Week  

various locations

MLK graphic

To honor the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., the Center for Community Engagement, in collaboration with the Anderson Freeman Center and the Scott Center for Spiritual and Religious Life, is leading Living Legacy Week. Reflective readings, videos, and discussions will be provided asynchronously, paired with direct action in the community throughout the week. Students, faculty, and staff are encouraged to join the conversation!  See the full schedule of activities here.

December 12

CANCELLED -- Lessons and Carols for Advent and Christmas  

Middlebury College Chapel

photo of interior chapel with congregation and Christmas decorations

UPDATE, DEC. 10:  The programs were printed and the greens were hung, the poinsettias were placed and the choir was warming up!  Sunday afternoon and evening promised to be a festive and meaningful celebration of Advent and Christmas. Regrettably, due to the increased number of Covid cases on campus, out of an abundance of caution we are not able to gather for this annual celebration of Lessons and Carols. Please click here to see the program we had prepared.

This annual traditional program combines choral music and Biblical texts of the season. PLEASE NOTE THAT THERE WILL BE NO CONGREGATIONAL SINGING THIS YEAR, DUE TO COVID PROTOCOLS. The celebratory community service (held at both 4:00 and 7:00 pm) features the Middlebury College Choir, performing under the direction of Jeffrey Buettner, and readings by students, faculty, and staff. There will be large-print programs available, and the 7:00 service will have ASL interpretation.  George Matthew Jr. rings in the service with selections on the chapel carillon. Donations are collected for local charities. 

See events above for upcoming events

Thursday evenings during fall term

College Vespers  

Middlebury Chapel

poster with sunset over lake and trees

College Vespers is a Christian evening worship service held each Thursday in Mead Chapel.  All students, faculty, and staff are welcome at this peaceful, candle-lit gathering of prayer, music, readings, and meditative silence.  Led by Affiliate Chaplain Rev. Andy Nagy-Benson and others, and sponsored by the Scott Center for Spiritual & Religious Life.

December 3

Process the Pandemic Through Writing & Art  

Adirondack Coltrane Lounge

multi-colored poster with large circle

The Writing Center — in partnership with The Scott Center, Health and Wellness Education, and the Libraries — welcomes you to a writing event to process the pandemic. Hosted by peer writing tutors, this event is designed to process painful memories, to support healing, and to create art. No prior experience with personal or reflective writing necessary! Register here 

October 8-10, 2021

Fall Family Weekend Activities  

family with kids sitting on grass

Islamic Jumma Prayer, Friday, Oct. 8 at 1:00 pm, Islamic Center in Forest Basement
Shabbat Service and Dinner, Friday, Oct. 8. Services at 5:30 pm, dinner at 6:30.  Come for both or just one part; all welcome regardless of background. Jewish Center in the Freeman International Center (FIC)
Hillel Bagel Brunch, Sunday Oct. 10, 10-11:30 am, Jewish Center in the FIC

 

Sunday, October 3, 2021

Addison County CROP Hunger Walk  

Middlebury Town Green

smiling people walking in front of CROP Hunger Walk banner

Update: our total amount raised this year was a whopping $24,449!

Addison County residents and Middlebury College students come together in this annual event to raise funds for our local food shelves and for Church World Services sustainability, disaster relief, and hunger-fighting projects worldwide.  This year we are happy to welcome Will Stevens of Golden Russet Farm and past member of the Vermont House of Representatives, as our Honorary Chair.

Visit our CROP Hunger Walk page where you can learn more, register to start raising money either individually or as a team, and make an online donation.   https://events.crophungerwalk.org/2021/event/middleburyvt

Please contact Ellen McKay Jewett if you have questions at emckay@middlebury.edu

September 23-25, 2021

Clifford Symposium -- Radical Implications: Facing a Planetary Emergency  

multi-colored graphic including wind turbines, city scapes and people demonstrating

The Scott Center is pleased to co-sponsor this year’s Clifford Symposium.  Please see the full schedule of events here.

September 11

Sept. 11 Vigil in Remembrance  

Middlebury Chapel Front Steps

soft-focus hand-held candles against a dark background

Quiet candlelit vigil on the steps of Mead Chapel, on the 20th anniversary of 9/11.

September 14

Welcome Back Dinner!  

46 South Street

vegetable in bowl

The Interfaith House, leaders of spiritual & religious life student orgs, and friends are invited to join us for a catered vegetarian dinner at the new home of The Scott Center.  Please contact Ellen McKay at emckay@middlebury.edu if you have questions.  We look forward to seeing you!

September 6-8, and Sept. 15-16

High Holidays  

colorful wreath with apples, honey and pomegranates

Please use go/highholidays to see a full schedule of High Holidays events

August 30-September 11

Scott Center Orientation Events  

Check our Welcome New Students page for a full schedule of Scott Center events for first-years and their families.

Charles P. Scott Center for Spiritual and Religious Life
46 South Street
Middlebury, VT 05753