The Chinese Students’ and International Students’ Associations teamed up Friday night to conduct the Mid-Autumn Moon Festival at University Church of Christ.
Aside from the Asian community on campus, most ACU students don’t know about or have never heard of the festival because it is predominantly celebrated by Chinese and Vietnamese ethnicities.
According to popular legend, the queen of heaven gave one man a potion of immortality, which he passed on to his wife for safekeeping. As word got out of the special potion, jealously grew in the hearts of others and it became too dangerous for her to defend. In order to protect her gift and save her life, the wife drank the potion and died.
Surprised and saddened by the news, her husband wept for her but soon saw her figure next to the moon in the night sky. In honor of her immortality, the man gathered all his favorite foods and offered them to his wife, which later became an annual Asian tradition known as the Mid-Autumn Moon Festival.
The Moon Festival is a well-known celebration in most Asian cultures, but receives little attention on campus because the international community at ACU is not well known.
Students involved in ISA make it a priority to bring these types of traditions to international students in order to remind them of home and provide a familiar atmosphere for them.
“Putting on events like this brings a little piece of home to them,” said Keyi Zhou, senior journalism major from China. “We also invited a lot of students and different community members because we want them to know something about the Chinese culture.”
Not only does it ease the sting of being homesick, but it also informs other students about different cultures.
“As an international student from a very different culture, I’ve learned to appreciate the different cultures,” said Fiama Molina, junior from Honduras and treasurer of ISA. “Being exposed to different cultures helps you learn a lot about yourself, a lot about your own country and your culture. I love serving the international community. I find in them a family.”