Religious Holy Days

Accommodating Religious Observance

As a non-sectarian institution, Allegheny College affirms the variety of religious faiths represented within our community and supports individuals’ personal practice and expression of religion. We urge flexibility and consideration of religious practice in both curricular and co-curricular planning.

In addition to the chronological list below, we offer guidelines for faculty and academic departments, for programming offices, and for athletics to assist in honoring the religions represented within our community. Please contact the Spiritual and Religious Life Office for more assistance or with specific questions.

Religious Calendar for 2014-2015

Jewish holidays begin on sundown of the first day listed.

Jun. 3-5 Shavuot (Jewish commemoration of giving of Torah on Sinai)
Jun. 21 Midsummer, or Litha (Pagan holiday around the summer solstice, the longest day)
Jun. 28-Jul.28 Ramadan  (Islamic month of fasting)
Jul. 9 Martyrdom of the Bab (Death of the herald of the Baha’i faith)
Jul. 17 or 26 Laylat al-Qadr (Islamic night of prayer during Ramadan; date varies based on different legal opinions)
Jul. 28-30 Eid al-Fitr (Islamic three-day celebration at the end of Ramadan)
Aug. 1 Lughnassad, or Lammas (Pagan celebration of the beginning of harvest)
Aug. 17 Krishna Janmashtami (Hindu festival celebrating birth of Krishna)
Sep. 22 Harvest, or Mabon (Pagan ritual of thanksgiving for fruits of the earth)
Sep. 24-26 Rosh Hashanah (Jewish New Year)
Sep.25-Oct. 3 Navaratri (Hindu festival honoring the goddess Durga)
Oct. 3 Dussehra, or Dasara (Hindu celebration of victories by several gods and goddesses)
Oct. 3-4 Yom Kippur (Jewish Day of Atonement)
Oct. 4-6 Eid al-Adha (Feast of Sacrifice; Islamic three-day celebration at the end of the hajj)
Oct. 8-15 Sukkot (Jewish week-long Festival of Booths)
Oct. 20 Birth of the Bab (Herald of Baha’i faith)
Oct. 23 Diwali  (Hindu Festival of Lights)
Nov. 1 All Saints Day (Holy Day of Obligation for Catholics)
Nov. 1 Samhain  (Pagan festival honoring those who have died)
Nov. 3 Ashura  (Shi‘ite holy day commemorating the martyrdom of Husayn b. ‘Ali)
Nov. 12 Birth of Baha’u’llah (Founder of Baha’i faith)*
Nov. 30 Advent begins (Christian season of preparation for Christmas)
Dec. 8 Immaculate Conception (Holy Day of Obligation for Catholics)
Dec. 16-24 Hanukkah (Jewish eight-day Festival of Lights)
Dec. 21 Yule, or Winter Solstice (Pagan observance of the winter solstice)
Dec. 25 Christmas (Christian celebration of the birth of Jesus)
Jan. 3 Mawlid al-Nabi (Islamic observance of Prophet Muhammad’s birthday)
Feb. 2 Imbolc, or St. Brighid’s Day (Pagan celebration of the beginning of spring)
Feb. 3-4 Tu   B’Shvat (Jewish Arbor Day)
Feb. 18 Ash Wednesday (Christian first day of Lent)
Mar. 4-5 Purim (Jewish Feast of Lots)
Mar. 6 Holi (Hindu Festival of Colors)
Mar. 20 Ostara  (Pagan festival at the vernal equinox)
Mar. 21 Naw-Rúz  (Baha’i Month of Fasting ends)
Mar. 29 Palm Sunday (Christian observance of Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem)
Apr. 2 Maundy Thursday (Christian observance of Jesus’ last supper)
Apr. 3 Good Friday (Christian observance of Jesus’ death and burial)
Apr. 3-5 First two days of Passover (Jewish week-long observance of the Exodus from Egypt begins)
Apr. 5 Easter (Christian celebration of Christ’s resurrection)
Note:   Eastern Orthodox Easter falls on Apr. 12
Apr. 15-16 Yom Hashoah (Jewish day of Holocaust remembrance)
Apr 21-May 2 Festival of Ridvan (Baha’i commemoration of Baha’u’llah’s proclamation)
May 1 Beltane (Pagan celebration related to May Day, fertility)
May 29 Ascension of Baha’u’llah (Anniversary of Baha’i’s founder’s death)