On December 6th, the freshman classes of Madame Marchand captured the aspects of Saint Nicholas Day, a special holiday in Northern Europe in the hearts of many European children, by celebrating an exciting Monday with candy-filled shoes outside the classroom door.
Madame Marchand, reflecting on this special occasion, said, “It brings me back to my upbringing in Belgium because it brings up a lot of good memories from when I was little and how fearful we were if we had done something bad, thinking that we might not receive our wishes.” Later she cheerfully added, “I think the students are as excited as I am!”
Attempting to capture the effects of an authentic Saint Nicholas Day, the freshman class followed the tradition of first writing a letter to Saint Nicholas, then filling their shoes with vegetables and setting them outside the classroom. After anxiously waiting for a few minutes, they were allowed to go and retrieve their shoes. Sure enough, ‘Saint Nicholas’ had placed various kinds of candy in their shoes and taken the vegetables, which his horse had eaten.
One freshman, Jorge Perez, pleased to have received candy, remarked, “I like the candy but I don’t like the vegetables.” According to another freshman, Seth Sebastian, “The candy makes me happy. I wish we could do this every Christmas.” A successful day among satisfied students, Madame Marchand hopes to continue this new Jesuit tradition. Hopefully Saint Nicholas will keep Jesuit on his radar, returning to supply students’ shoes with candy in the future.