Even though the campus is mostly empty, one event at Augustana College has been well attended. Because of the pandemic, the weekly Wednesday night chapel is now virtual and the first in a series of six was held last week.
Chaplain Richard Priggie says during normal times, about 50 students show up for the weekly chapel service. But attendance for the first virtual chapel was 425.
He thinks it's partly due to the college age generation being very comfortable going online, and that many students are feeling "dislocated" with the interruption of their school year.
"I think in this situation that we're in with the virus, people are looking for consolation and comfort and meaning during this time. So all the more something like Wednesday worship sounds like something that would be helpful."
Virtual chapel is a joint effort of Priggie and the Director of Chapel Music, John Hurty - with both in their own homes. Each week includes prayers, scripture readings, a brief sermon, and songs.
It's held on Wednesday nights at 8 o'clock, and accessible through the Augustana website.