On Sept. 15, five Central American countries celebrated their independence from Spain. This year, upper school students at St. Martin’s Episcopal School joined the festivities, specifically observing Honduran independence.
“Since we do have Honduran exchange students, I thought that it would be a great thing for (Spanish) Club to be able to reflect upon the descendants of people that may have fought for Honduran independence,” said Spanish Club President and Senior Gabby Killett.
To honor Honduras, Spanish Club organized a student-led chapel, hosted a party with Hispanic food and music, and taught students a traditional Honduran dance called “punta.”
Not only did the Spanish club’s celebration provide warm, gooey queso to hungry upper school students, but it helped St. Martin’s two new Honduran exchange students feel more at home.
In fact, one of the Honduran exchange students, Senior Gabriel Diaz, led the “punta” session and gave the homily in the student-led chapel service.
“I was pretty nervous coming here because it’s a whole new society to me,” Diaz said. “The community made me feel welcome since they acknowledged the celebration of Honduran independence.”
Honduran Independence Day also claims a special place in the second Honduran exchange student’s heart.
“For me, celebrating the freedom of my country also represents the union (of) all Central Spanish countries, since they all fought for one thing: independence,” said Senior Dilcia Rodriguez.
“I know that it gave Dilcia and Gabriel an additional sense of pride in their culture,” Killett said. “They were able to understand that in their new home, their culture is appreciated just as much as it would be in their home country.”
Tortilla chips and lively dancing served as incentives to get students involved with the independence festivities, but Spanish Club also managed to spread awareness of Hondurus’s culture and history, while simultaneously embracing two new students with open arms.