Liturgical dance team inspires believers


Photo by Megan Lay

Megan Lay, Staff writer

During Mass of the Holy Spirit on Sept. 20, attendees saw a few dancers in the aisles of the Chapel.
These dancers are a part of the Liturgical Dance Ensemble at Mercyhurst.
Currently, there are 32 members of the ensemble, including one non-Dance major.
The purpose of the Liturgical Dance Ensemble is to give students an opportunity to utilize dance to explore and share their religious beliefs.
Additionally, the ensemble provides performance opportunities to enhance the enrichment of spiritual life on campus and in the community.
Senior Dance major Grace Petron, Liturgical Dance Ensemble co-president, said the most inspiring part of the group, to her, is to hear how the dancing has affected spectators.
“To know that it enhanced one person with their worship experience encourages me to continue dancing in this way,” Petron said.
The ensemble sends about 100 letters to churches around Erie every year, offering to bring dance to their congregations.
Last year, these letters helped the ensemble participate in 25 liturgical dance events.
They additionally participate in campus Masses around four times a year.
A few weekends ago, Petron, along with several other members of the Liturgical Dance Ensemble, attended the Women of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America Retreat.
They participated in three worship settings and led two liturgical dance workshops.
Petron said, “The best part of this experience was having the opportunity to dance with the women who attended the workshop within a service.
“It was powerful watching and dancing with women who did not think they could participate in liturgical dance and who had such joy while praising God through dance,” she said.