An Advent I Can Never Have Again

by Kevin Joshua B. Cosme

Christmas Party 2019 | Advent can get pretty crazy in the seminary, but not as crazy as how this year has been.

Advent is one of the most exciting seasons in the seminary. Not only does it hold the promise of a coming Christmas break, it also means busting out the Christmas decorations! After being stowed in the bodega for an entire year, the dusty old boxes of Christmas ornaments are brought out once again for use by eager, coughing seminarians. Nothing says “Advent” quite like “asthma”.

We would set aside a certain day before the First Sunday of Advent to decorate portions of the Theology building’s interior by class, so each section would have its own artistic style and Bluetooth speaker blaring out Pentatonix Christmas songs.

The creative people immediately set out hanging the lights and decorations, allowing their aesthetic sense to guide them toward the gradual coming together of a seasonal masterpiece, while the not-so-creative people like me end up scratching our heads, wondering if we put up too many Christmas balls on the bulletin board. I usually just give up and settle with sweeping the floor, but it’s to the peppy tune of Sleigh Ride and the playful banter of my classmates, so it’s all good.

The result is stunning. In the span of a few hours, the Theology hallway is transformed from plain academic corridor to glamorous hotel lobby (kinda). Seriously though, it may not be Makati Shangri-La, but it’s amazing what seminarians can do with a bunch of string lights, colorful plastics and a whole lot of Christmas cheer.

Here We Go Again

Another thing I love about the season is the creative Advent traditions we keep. Most of them are prepared ahead of time by a Kapatiran, with everyone joining in after dinner nearly every night. (A Kapatiran is a group of theology seminarians from different year levels who live in adjacent rooms and who serve as your faith support group usually until you finish Theology).

We used to have several of these traditions but they were eventually whittled down to a handful, partly because they took too long to finish. The ones that remained unsurprisingly turned out to be the most meaningful.