More than a Manger: MPC combines culture and religion in holiday exhibit

See how different cultures celebrate Christmas at the Museum of Peoples and Cultures’ “More than a Manger” exhibit. Open now until February, the exhibit showcases 21 nativities from 10 unique regions in the American Southwest.

Other Christmas traditions and celebrations displayed in the exhibit include the Mexican nativity play Los Pastores, hanging ristras (bundles of red peppers), tamales and handmade nativity craft work.

46165965_975609215956828_2817372587670110208_n.jpgVisitors will also learn about the history of Christianity among the native communities of the region and find deeper meaning in the Christmas season.

Discover how Christmas not only unifies Christianity but also influences people and their cultures through the sharing and celebration of Christmas traditions.

A nativity set is more than a group of figurines and a manger; nativity details reflect the heritage and history of the hands that made them. Become immersed in cultural traditions while reflecting on the Christmas story by attending this exhibit.

Additional nativity celebrations across campus

Artist Brian Kershisnk will discuss his painting, “Nativity,” on Monday, December 10 at 7:15 p.m. at the BYU Museum of Art (MOA).

The BYU Bookstore will display a 1,000+ piece Fontanini, an Italian hand-crafted and world-renown nativity. The nativity will be located on the bottom floor of the bookstore from December 1 through 30.

How to Celebrate Christmas if You’re Away from Home

Family, festivities, fun—Christmas is one of the most widely celebrated holidays. It is is traditionally a time when families reunite to celebrate the birth of Christ and give each other presents. However, many of us are college students living far from home. How can we celebrate Christmas away from our families?

1. Connect with Friends

Just because you’re not with your family doesn’t mean you have to spend Christmas alone. Find some friends and do something fun! Make hot chocolate and watch a Christmas movie, have a snowball fight, or compete to see who can make the best snow fort. In a 2015 study, Psychology professor Dr. Julianne Holt-Lunstad found that loneliness is a precursor for early death. “The risk associated with social isolation and loneliness is comparable with well-established risk factors for mortality, including those identified by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (physical activity, obesity, substance abuse, responsible sexual behavior, mental health, injury and violence, environmental quality, immunization, and access to health care),” she and her co-authors said. Loneliness can lead to death just as much as obesity and substance abuse can.

So don’t celebrate the holiday alone! Find some friends and make this the best Christmas ever!

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2. Help a Teen Bake and Deliver Christmas Cookies

 This is a fun way to get involved with the holiday, learn a new skill, and spread Christmas cheer. Christmas isn’t just about presents and Santa, it’s a celebration of Christ. You can easily honor him by serving others. In a 2017 study, School of Family Life professor Dr. Laura Padilla-Walker found that teens’ self esteem was boosted by helping strangers. “There is something unique about helping those that teens do not know that helps them to feel better about themselves, but helping family and friends does not facilitate this same outcome,” said the researcher. Not all of us are teenagers, but serving others can still give us those positive vibes.

 

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3. Play a Good Video Game

There are good video games out there, ones that encourage prosocial behavior (like these, suggested by our 2014 Hinckley lecturer Dr. Brad Bushman), and good ways to play them, as shown by research done by Dr. Sarah Coyne and others.

4. Have a Christmas Dance Party!

Moving around—dancing—makes you happier! “Pushing yourself to go out and be with other people will automatically increase your mood because your body will be producing serotonin and endorphins, which naturally increase your happiness level,” said a Relate Institute article. If you’re feeling sad that you’re not at home, just dance! Grab some friends, hit the dance floor, and jam!

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It’s not easy to spend Christmas away from your family, but these four tips can make this a Christmas to remember!

 

 

Students: How to Navigate Christmas FHSS Style

It’s that time of year again! Candy canes, ugly sweaters, and an endless barrage of Hallmark movies. You may be tempted to navigate Christmas like this:

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However, that’s not what Christmas should be; we need to be focusing on its true meaning. Try these steps instead:

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If you need help, BYU Speeches has some great material that applies to navigating Christmas:

How do You Navigate Christmas?