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Evangelical Covenant Church celebrates Scandinavian traditions

Pictured from left right are Jane Branch Anne Weiss MurnHansemann Dorothy Anderson. Grace Ackerman Rochester Minn. pictured front was Lucia.

Pictured from left to right are Jane Branch, Anne Weiss, Murna Hansemann and Dorothy Anderson. Grace Ackerman of Rochester, Minn., pictured in front, was Lucia. On the first Saturday in December, Santa Lucia is celebrated at Evangelical Covenant Church of

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Updated: February 23, 2012 8:10AM

The first Saturday in December, Santa Lucia is celebrated at Evangelical Covenant Church of Elgin. It is a morning of good “Scandinavian Egg Coffee” with all the pastries, cheeses, lefse, herring, cardamom bread, pepperkaker and a variety of Swedish cookies that all the women of the church bring to share with the community.

It is a morning of wearing Swedish costumes and greeting all the guests with “god jul” (Merry Christmas). The Lucia this year was Murna Hansemann’s granddaughter, Grace Ackerman of Rochester, Minn.

The original legend came from Sicily, where a young girl loved God and prayed for her parents’ salvation. At the age of 17 and about to be wed, she gave her entire dowry to the church in thanksgiving to God for healing her ill mother. When her future husband heard of this, he was enraged to learn she was a Christian and accused her of witchcraft. She was tortured, imprisoned and later burned at the stake on Dec. 13, 304 A.D. While in prison, she served food to fellow prisoners with a crown of lights on her head to guide her way around the dark cells. She was made a saint by the early church, and this legend found its way north to Scandinavia, where her faith was admired and honored.

Today, Santa Lucia brings Christ’s message, “I am the light of the world. He who follows me will not walk in darkness but will have the light of life.”

Red Carpet Shoe Diva

Debbie James, CEO of Red Carpet Shoe Diva, recently announced the kickoff of her monthly social event, “Sole to Soul.” The event is part shopping party and part social event where guests enjoy wine and appetizers, and hear from special guests ranging from authors and motivators to local business people.

The December debut event featured an “Intimate Discussion” with author, blogger and businesswoman Yolanda “Yanni” Brown, author of “Making Love Better Begins Within.” Brown is featured on the “Six Brown Chicks” blog and TV segment airing on WCIU-TV. She has hosted her series of casual talks about love life and relationships to audiences over the past five years including Atlanta’s popular Green Room. Her debut book is an introduction to her life and how she arrived at her mission of teaching others to love and respect themselves.

The book was featured in the play “All My Single Ladies” last fall.

A unique shoe salon, Red Carpet Shoe Diva is putting a twist to shoe shopping with a party atmosphere, friendly service and an unparalleled selection, with footwear and accessories ranging from formal to fun. Soon the Red Carpet will be rolled out to selections for men.

For more information, call 630-452-5699 or 866-533-9884. Red Carpet Shoe Diva is located at 10 E. Main St. in East Dundee.

Places To Be Scene

A free Concert of Love Songs will be presented by Solange Sior and Murna Hansemann at 7:30 p.m. Feb. 14 at the Evangelical Covenant Church of Elgin, 1565 Larkin Ave. Call the church at 847-888-2302 or Hansemann at 847-742-6431.

The Elgin Symphony Orchestra presents “My Passionate Valentine” on Feb. 3, 4 and 5 featuring guest conductor Jose Luis Gomez of the Frankfort Radio Symphony Orchestra. The concerts will be presented at the Hemmens Cultural Center in Elgin. For ticket information, call 847-888-4000.

Give your home a fresh new look at the Old House/New House Home Show Feb. 10, 11 and 12 at Pheasant Run Resort, 4051 E. Main St. in St. Charles. Enjoy the daily workshops.

For more detailed information, call 630-515-1160.

The Marriott Theater kicks off the 2012 season Jan. 27 with the seven-time Tony Award-winning musical “Legally Blond.” For ticket information, call the Marriott Box Office at 847-634-0200.

You could be the next winner as Classic Pageants presents 2012 Miss Young Teen (12 to 15 years old) and 2012 Miss Illinois Teen (16 to 19 years old). To obtain free applications, write or call Classic Pageants at 630-325-4305. State finals will be held at the Hemmens Cultural Center in Elgin. The State Pageant will be held March 24.

The annual search is on for contestants wanted for the Mrs. Illinois America Pageant. State finals will be held March 24 at the Hemmens Cultural Center. To obtain the official 2012 Mrs. Illinois America Pageant application, write or phone Classic Pageants, Inc. 2615 W. 35th St., Oak Brook, IL 60523. Call 630-325-4305.

The Elgin Community College Foundation presents the 13th annual Founders Day Brunch from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Jan. 29 at the Fox Valley University Business Center at ECC, 1700 Spartan Drive in Elgin. Call Katie Michel at 847-214-7377.

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