Interfaith Calendar

Religious observances allow the university to reflect on and practice the values that we as a campus community openly espouse, including sensitivity and respect for all cultures and religions. We are a community that embraces our diversity and encourages the celebration of multicultural traditions.

This resource includes dates, descriptions and information about some of the many religious holy days celebrated by faculty, staff and students at St. Cloud State. Also included with many are recommended accommodations to assist with planning classroom activities and other academic and co-curricular events.

March 2023

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Magha Puja Day (Buddhist) - March 6, 2023

Description: Magha Puja Day commemorates an important event in the life of the Buddha, in which the four disciples traveled to join the Buddha.

Future Dates:

February 24 (Thailand)/February 26, 2024

February 13, 2025

Purim - (Jewish) - March 6-8, 2023

Description: Purim commemorates the time when the Jews were living in Persia and were saved by the courage of a young Jewish woman called Esther.

General Practices: Many Jews hold carnival-like celebrations on Purim, dressing in costumes, and read the Book of Esther. Triangular, fruit-filled pastries are eaten in opposition to the villain Haman, who wore a three-cornered hat.

Recommended Accommodations: Purim is not subject to the restrictions on work that affect some other holidays; however, some sources indicate that Jews should not go about their ordinary business at Purim out of respect for the festival.

Future Dates:

March 23-25, 2024

March 13-15, 2025

Holi (Hindu) - March 6-7, 2023

Description: Also known as the “Festival of Colors,” this holiday can be traced to Hindu scriptures commemorating good over evil. This date is also a celebration of the colorful spring and a farewell to the dull winter.

General Practices: Hindus often sprinkle colored water and powder on others and celebrate with bonfires and lights, signifying victory of good over evil.

Date Details: Celebrated at the end of the winter season on the last full moon day of the lunar moon in late February or early March.

Future Dates:

March 25-26, 2024

March 13-14, 2025

Ostara / Alban Eilir / Spring Equinox (Pagan, Wiccan, Druid) - March 20, 2023

Description: Also known as Eostre. Regarded as a time of fertility and conception. In some Wiccan traditions, it is marked as the time when the Goddess conceives the God's child, which will be born at the winter solstice. One of eight major annual sabbats or festivals.

General Practices: Lighting fires to commemorate the return of light in the spring and to honor the God and Goddess. Coloring eggs as a way of honoring fertility is also practiced.

Future Dates:

March 20 (annually)

Naw Ruz- (Baha’i) - March 20-21, 2023

Description: This is the Baha’i New Year, a traditional celebration in Iran adopted as a holy day associated with Baha’i. It is a celebration of spring and new life.

General Practices: Festive music dancing, prayers, meetings and meals

Future Dates:

March 20-21 (annually)

Ramadan - (Muslim) - March 22-April 20, 2023

Description: Ramadan is an occasion to focus on faith through fasting and prayer, and is one of the most important Muslim holidays. Ramadan is notable because the Qur’an was first revealed during this month, and Muslims see the Qur’an as the ultimate form of guidance for mankind.

General Practices: Fasting is required during the entire month of Ramadan. Muslims refrain from food and beverages during the daylight hours, and smoking and sexual relations are forbidden. Worshipers break the fasting each night with prayer, reading of the Qu’ran, and a meal called the iftar.

Date Details: Dates are determined by the lunar calendar. Lunar calendars can vary based on region and practice. The observed date marks the beginning of a 30 day observation.

Recommended Accommodations: If possible, avoid scheduling major academic deadlines during this time. Be sensitive to the fact that students and employees celebrating Ramadan will be fasting during the day (continuously for 30 days) and will likely have less stamina as a result.

Future Dates:

March 10-April 8, 2024

February 28-March 29, 2025

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