Christmas services in local churches
By JAN GRIFFEY / Editor
Shelby County residents will spend time this Christmas Eve and Christmas Day worshipping together.
One of the more unique opportunities to do that will be at Crosscreek Baptist Church, 600 Crosscreek Trail, Pelham.
For the last six or so years, church members have gathered the Sunday after Christmas to observe the Moravian Love Feast.
Dr. Jay Kieve, church pastor, said the service is rooted in the tradition of a group of German immigrants who settled in the 18th century in what became Salem, N.C.
“It is akin to the Free Church tradition. Some members of the Brethren church, or Amish and Mennonite communities observe this,” Kieve said. “The service is conducted around Christmas time and members of the church sing Christmas carols together, read scriptures and serve each other sweet rolls and coffee.”
Kieve, who was a minster in North Carolina, brought the tradition with him to Crosscreek.
“We gather in Fellowship Hall and serve each other sweet rolls and sing Christmas carols and read scripture. It’s a time of sharing encouragement, fellowship and love,” he said. “We’ve done this for six or seven years now. It’s had to go wrong when you serve sweet rolls. We have traditionally done this service the Sunday after Christmas, but this year, because Christmas is on a Sunday, we will do it that day.
“It’s a less formal opportunity to worship that is lively in its fellowship. People respond well to it.”
This year’s Moravian Love Feast service begins at 10 a.m. on Christmas Day.
Crosscreek Baptist will also hold a Christmas Eve service at 6 p.m., which will include the Lord’s Supper, Christmas carols and the reading of the Christmas story from Luke.
For more information, visit Crosscreekbaptist.org or call 663-4886.
Other Christmas Eve and Christmas Day services planned by Shelby County churches include:
-Chelsea Bible Church will host a Christmas Eve Candlelight Communion Service from 5-6 p.m. on Dec. 24. CBC is located on Shelby County 36 at Shelby County 11 in Chelsea. Directions can be found on our web site at ChelseaBible.org.
-Mount Olive Missionary Baptist Church in Wilton is having a special Christmas Day service at 8 a.m. Usual worship service is at 11am. Since this is a pecial day, the church wants to be flexible enough to make sure that while all enjoy the festivities and gifts of the day, all also put in perspective that the day is to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ.
-Shiloh United Methodist Church – Calera, 6214 Shelby County 151, plans a Christmas Eve Service featuring carols and Holy Communion by candlelight on Saturday, Dec. 24, at 5 p.m. For more information, call 668-4377.
-First Presbyterian Church of Alabaster plans a Christmas Eve Communion and Candlelight service at 6:30 p.m. Christmas Day worship service will be at 10:30 a.m. There will be no early worship service or Sunday school on Christmas Day.
-St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church, corner of Oak and Plowman, Montevallo, on Christmas Eve will have a 5:30 p.m. Family Service, and an 11 p.m. Candlelight Service. Singing of familiar Carols will begin at 10:30 PM; Holy Communion will
be served at both Services. There will be no Christmas Day Service.
-Liberty Christian Church, 100 Ranch Road, Harpersville, and Pastor Theoangelo Perkins, invite you to a candlelight prayer service on Friday, Dec. 23, from 5 to 8 p.m. All are welcome to come by and bring family and stay as long or briefly as you like during those hours. If you desire someone to pray with, someone will be available. Christmas Day church service is from 10-11 a.m. For more information, call 672-8686.
-The Westover Spiritual Life Worship Center, located on Shelby County 51 between old and new U.S. 280, will have Christmas morning services at 10:30 a.m. Pastor is Greg Gann.
-Calera Baptist Church is having the Lord’s Supper on Dec. 24 at 6 p.m.
-Church of the Highlands (Main Campus-Grants Mill) Christmas plans the following services: Dec. 22, 6 and 8 p.m.; Dec. 23, 6 and 8 p.m. and Dec. 24, 1, 3, and 5 p.m.
Services are free but reserve your spot at Churchofthehighlands.com.
The church is also offering a special online Christmas Day experience. Join the online campus on Christmas Sunday, Dec. 25, and have the services streamed into your home. Gather friends and family together for this memorable online-only experience that will feature worship with John Larson and a special message from Pastor Chris.
Tune in online at any one of five service times: 8, 9:30 and 11:30 a.m. and 5 and 7 p.m.
There will be no services available at any of our in-person campuses on Christmas Day.
-Christ Community Church will hold Christmas Eve service on Dec. 24 at 5 p.m. at Helena Elementary School. For more information, see Cccbham.org.
-Community Baptist Church will hold Christmas Eve Candles, Carols and Communion at 5:30 p.m. Christmas Day Worship Service will be at 10 a.m. with no early service or Sunday school. For more information, call 427-2340 or see Communitybaptistmaylene.com.
-St. John’s of Mount Laurel is at 7 p.m. on Dec. 24.
-First Baptist Church Pelham has a tradition on Christmas Eve. Families come forward and kneel together as they take communion. Those who are single usually come with friends or their Sunday school classes participate. All the while, soft Christmas music is being sung and played by many members of the church’s congregation, all by candlelight. The service begins at 4 p.m. However, a come and go communion is offered from 2 to 3 p.m.
-Chelsea Creek Community Church in Chelsea plans a Christmas Eve service on Dec. 24 at 5 p.m. The service will include candlelight, communion and the children bringing in the lights. The service will include the singing of traditional Christmas carols, all in a very meaningful observance deisgned to help all re-capture the wonder of Christmas. The church is located at 48 Chesser Crane Road, Suite K, Chelsea. For more information, see Chelseacreekcc.org or call 678-2406.
-New Heights Church, Chelsea Park Elementary, 9000 Chelsea Park Trail, plans a Family Candlelight Service on Christmas Eve at 5 p.m. For more information, call 478-6688.
-The Church of Cahaba Bend in Helena, a United Methodist congregation, located on Shelby County 52 across from Helena Intermediate School, plans a Christmas Eve services on Saturday, Dec. 24, at 4 and 6 p.m. Church members and guests gather for a time of worshipful celebration because Jesus, the light of the world, is come. With word, song, sacraments, and candlelight, all recall with gratitude God’s great gift of love and grace. The 4 p.m. service is for children of all ages, but particularly for those with small children who may need to get to bed early in anticipation of Christmas Day.
Christmas Day service is Sunday, Dec. 25, at 10 a.m. Joy to the world! The Lord is come! Celebrate Christmas morning with us! This is a wonderful opportunity to begin your Christmas morning celebration by worshiping our Savior.
New Year’s Day service on Sunday, Jan. 1, 2012, is at 10 a.m. Join the church on New Year’s Day as it begins at 2012 with Holy Communion and renew our covenant with Christ and His Church.
-St. Catherine’s Episcopal Church, located two miles south of Chelsea Middle School on Shelby County 39, plans a child-friendly service beginning at 4:30 p.m. on Christmas Eve afternoon with a special Christmas story, children telling the birth story, and carols. Cookies and milk after the service!
Later that evening at 10:30 p.m., all are invited to join the church for the Christmas Eve midnight mass. Steeped in centuries of tradition, this beautiful service is a breathtaking way to celebrate the birth of the Christ child with your family. For more information, visit St.CatherinesAL.com or call 678-3430.
-Shepherd of the Hills Lutheran Church, 4887 Valleydale Road, plans a children’s Christmas Eve service at 5 p.m. and a traditional Christmas Eve candlelight service at 7:30 p.m. On Christmas Day, at 10 a.m. service will include communion. For more information, visit Sothl.org or call 995-9673.