Oldest churches grow, prepare for Easter

Editor’s note: This is the first in a series of articles on the programs and services offered by Columbiana churches during this Lenten season.

Two of Columbiana’s oldest churches are also the largest in our community. Columbiana United Methodist Church was founded in 1843. Dr. Don Wright has been the pastor of CUMC for the last three years. The church has exploded with new programs during his tenure.

Two fundraisers are coming up, a barbecue sale on March 23 to benefit the summer youth mission trip, and a Boston Butt Sale on April 11 to benefit the Honduras medical mission trip.

Holy Week is full of programs. Palm Sunday, April 5, is a day for children. The Children’s Palm Processional will be at both the 9 a.m. and 11 a.m. services.

There will be an Easter Egg Hunt in the afternoon and the Children’s Choir will present their Easter musical at 6:30 p.m.

Holy Week Services for the community will be Monday-Wednesday at noon in the small chapel on Depot Street, with lunch following. The sanctuary will be turned into the 14 Stations of the Cross for personal reflection on Maundy Thursday April 9 from 6-8 p.m. and open communion will also be served.

Easter Sunday, April 12, the contemporary Heart4God service will be at 9 a.m. with the flowering of the cross on the front lawn at 10 a.m.

The community is invited to bring flowers from their home or from the church to decorate the cross in joyous celebration of the resurrection.

The musical experience Behold the Lamb with narration, choir, and brass ensemble will be celebrated at the traditional 11 a.m. service.

The First Baptist Church of Columbiana, founded in 1856, has an equally full agenda. Pastor Mike Miller has led the church for 17 years through growth and the construction of its new beautiful facilities.

The Easter activities start with an Easter Egg Hunt for children on Saturday, April 4 at 10 a.m. at the church. On Maundy Thursday, there will be a special musical experience at 6:30 p.m., written by their music director Charles Powell.

This service of shadows will combine music and vignettes to walk through the last days of Jesus, and communion will also be offered.

Easter will have one service at 10:30 a.m., a very special cantata, Songs for the Risen King, which will feature the hand bell choir, the Praise Team, narrations by members of the choir, the church’s nine-piece orchestra, and the 50-voice choir.

It will be a full multimedia experience that will surely bless all who attend.

Columnist Phoebe Donald Robinson can be reached by e–mail at phoeberobinson@bellsouth.net.