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Friday
Nov 21st

Kwanzaa Orientation - A historical reflection on Kwanzaa

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For some people elements of the holiday season conjure up old traditions, stories, activities, scents, smells and sights. Store shelves, commercials, front lawns displayed with lights, plus office parties, remind the religious and non-religious to buy presents, spend time with family, have a generous heart, or to reflect. For some people elements of the holiday season conjure up old traditions, stories, activities, scents, smells and sights. Store shelves, commercials, front lawns displayed with lights, plus office parties, remind the religious and non-religious to buy presents, spend time with family, have a generous heart, or to reflect.

Esteemed historian Professor Mahmoud El-Kati wants to engage the public for a time of historical reflection on Kwanzaa. Tuesday, December 18, at 7:00 p.m., Professor El-Kati will host a Kwanzaa orientation at Golden Thyme Coffee, 921 Selby Ave., St. Paul. Social hour begins at 6:30 p.m., also allowing for time to grab dinner or snacks. A surprise guest will be present to share information with anyone on the origins, purpose and practice of the Kwanzaa celebration.


In 1966 Dr. Maulana Karenga, professor and chairman of Black Studies at California State University, Long Beach, created Kwanzaa, a non-political or religious celebration to honor African-American history, culture and people. Kwanza spelled with one 'a' is rooted in the Swahili word "matunda ya kwanza," meaning "first fruits." Kwanzaa spelled with two "a's" is used in reference to the international celebration. The celebration runs from December 26 to January 1. Those who observe Kwanzaa may participate in candle lighting, social gatherings, songs, dances and a traditional feast. There is a reflection each day on one of seven Nguzo Saba community-guiding principles; Umoja (Unity), Kujichaguila (Self Determination), Ujima (Collective Work and Responsibility), Ujamaa (Cooperative Economics), Nia (Purpose), Kuumba (Creativity) and Imani (Faith). Each night of Kwanzaa a child lights one candle in the Kinara, a candleholder, and discusses the importance and value of one guiding principle.


For more information on the Kwanzaa Orientation at Golden Thyme Coffee, call 651-645-1340.

 

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