UMass Amherst Religious and Spiritual Life

Religious and Spiritual Life at UMass Amherst
Photo of Chapel on UMass Amherst campus

Residential Candle Policy

Candles are not permitted in student rooms.
Recreational use of candles and burning incense are prohibited in all residence halls.

Candles may be used for religious purposes only in designated lounges of residence halls. If you plan to light candles for religious purposes, you must:

1. Submit a signed copy of the "Safety Procedures for Lighting Religious Candles in Residence Halls" form to your RD. Obtain written permission from your RD or ARD prior to the religious candle lighting. (You can get this form from your Cluster Office.)

2. Use candlesticks that do not exceed four (4) inches in height.

3. Position candlesticks in a pan containing one-half inch of water. The pan must be large enough to catch the candles if they fall.

4. Place the pan on a table or desk completely cleared of other material, away from shelves and open windows.

5. Light the religious candles only during the times noted on the signed agreement.

6. Remain in the designated lounge as long as any candle is burning.

The exact wording of Housing Service's residential candle policy (#II.D.6) is as follows:
"Candles, lit or unlit, are not permitted in student rooms. Recreational use of candles is prohibited in all areas of the residence halls. Lit candles are allowed for religious purposes only (in designated areas only) and must be registered in advance as outlined in the Lighting Religious Candles in the Residence Halls agreement."

To see this and other housing policies, visit the Housing and Residence Life Policies website.

Do you need help?

If you need help with this or any other University policy relating to religious life, please contact the Office of Religious Affairs, by email or phone 413-545-9642.