What is the last Theta Phi Alpha ritual you participated in? Was it Founders’ Day in April when we honored those who brought Theta Phi Alpha into being? Was it the Collegian Farewell ceremony as you said good-bye to your collegian experience and entered the alumna phase of membership? Perhaps your Initiation ceremony when you were welcomed as an initiated member, or the Memorial Service ceremony as you said good-bye to a special sister? Maybe you aren’t sure as it was many years ago. No matter when, I imagine you have a fond memory of our ritual. It could be a feeling, or words, or remembering the faces of your sisters who shared that experience with you.
Theta Phi Alpha’s ritual is what makes us different from other sororities and connects us across our chapters and associations. I can still recall my own initiation on January 20 1986. I remember what the room looked like, the faces of those who were there, that one of my dear Theta Phi Alpha friends (Kathy Prokupek Miller) signed my initiation certificate. I also remember words in the ceremony that stuck with me and still bring tears to my eyes when I hear them today. I believe that ritual is more than just a ceremony, that it is something that we as Theta Phi Alphas can live every day by our words, our actions and how we support each other.
I have a bookmark that has the words of our Creed in my bedroom. As I get ready for the day I look at this bookmark and recite the Creed. Sometime in the 1990’s, I purchased a Theta Phi Alpha pinky ring. I wear this ring on my right pinky finger almost every day. Someone once told me that I should wear this ring so that others can read the letters. I choose to wear the ring so the letters face me and I can be reminded of what they mean to me. These are two small ways that I keep Theta Phi Alpha ritual in my heart and mind each day.
The 2022 Convention tasked the national organization to continue to examine our ritual to ensure that it is accessible and inclusive to our members. The Ritual Committee values the input from our membership and will be sharing questions for our membership to answer starting with the June 2023 National Newsletter. I encourage you to share your thoughts by answering these questions.
What are your memories of Theta Phi Alpha ritual? If you have a memory you would like to share, email our Director of Communications at [email protected].
Please enjoy some pictures of what reminds me of Theta Phi Alpha ritual!