12/2/14 — Boston, Massachusetts Gabrielle Lawson (CGS 18) and other students gather at Marsh Plaza for a candlelight vigil in response to the grand jury decision in Ferguson. Photo By Jackie Ricciardi for Boston University Photography

How to Hold a Vigil

From time to time events of local, national or international importance compel the Boston University community to come together in solidarity and support with each other and those immediately affected by the event in question. Sometimes such vigiling is organized and coordinated by chaplains at Marsh Chapel, but most frequently the impetus for such community wide responses comes at the initiative of students, faculty, staff and administrators. This page is meant to be a resource and guide for those who would organize such an event.

  1. Book the Plaza or the Chapel. If possible, this should be done at least two weeks in advance through the Chapel Director, Heidi Freimanis-Cordts, who can be contacted at 617-358-3390 or at Reservations can only be made by Registered Student Groups and Departments. In cases of short notice, contact Chapel Director, Heidi Freimanis-Cordts and/or one of the chaplains as soon as possible to make arrangements and we will be as helpful to you as possible.
  2. Contact chaplains, speakers, musical guests, etc. as appropriate to the purpose of the vigil.
    • Dean Elmore and his staff are very accessible and will be able to help you contact other BU administrators.
      BU Administration
      Dean of Students
      Office GSU, Second Floor
      Phone 617-353-4126
    • The chaplains are happy to participate and share resources for the vigil.
      Marsh Chapel
      Office Lower Level of Marsh Chapel
      Phone 617-353-3560
    • If contacting outside speakers be sure to give them as much lead time as possible and make any arrangements for payment ahead of time. Please note that BU SAO groups are NOT allowed to enter into contracts with speakers and instead must go through SAO first.
  3. Amplified Sound: To avoid disruption to or substantial interference with instructional activities and essential operations amplified sound is not allowed on Marsh Plaza during times when classes are in session.
  4. Advertise:
    1. Flyers
    2. Email
    3. Create Facebook events
    4. etc.
  5. Get it in the news. Be sure you establish one or two main contact persons for the event and pass their information onto news media, administration and speakers who may be attending/covering the event.
    • BU Today
    • Larger news affiliates as appropriate