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Area churches plan special service for Holy Week, Easter

With Easter just over a week away, area churches are planning a variety of events and special services to celebrate one of the most important holidays on the Christian calendar.

King Solomon Baptist Church on Oak Ridge Road will be presenting a dramatic drive-thru presentation of Jesus’s crucifixion and resurrection.

Crawford Street United Methodist Church will host an Easter Cantata with a full orchestra this morning, and many churches will have special services celebrating Holy Week.

Crawford Street’s Easter Cantata will take place Sunday during their weekly service starting at 10:55 a.m.

The church’s chancel choir will perform “Come to the cross and remember” by Pepper Choplin. An orchestra including guest musicians from the Jackson orchestra and Hinds Community College, and musicians from the church’s congregation will accompany the choir. Pianist Jane Joseph will also accompany the choir. 

King Solomon’s drive-thru presentation will take place April 12-14 and begin at 7:30 p.m. each evening. The performance will include seven unique scenes with a total of 50 actors playing key figures from the passion. It is expected to take 30 minutes to drive through.

“It starts with Jesus in the garden and Judas betrays him with a kiss,” Pamela Pruitt said. “The next one is Peter’s denial. The one in the back is Jesus before the Sanhedrin where the two witnesses say he is guilty of treason. They beat him down.”

Onlookers will then proceed to the scene where Pilate condemns Jesus to death.

They will then visit two scenes depicting Jesus’s crucifixion and resurrection before a final scene showing a mother and daughter in modern times discussing what they experienced.    

“We have the big cross and he is up there,” Pruitt said.

“They harness him to the back of the cross. He had to exercise before, because it is rough being up there two and a half hours hanging.”

St. Alban’s Episcopal Church will host events all week including Stations of the Cross on Monday and Tuesday at 6 p.m., a healing service with Eucharist Wednesday at 6 p.m., foot washing and Eucharist Thursday at 6 p.m., a service for the crucifixion Friday at 6 p.m. and an Easter vigil service Saturday at 6 p.m.

“We may be little, but we do Holy Week up right,” St. Alban’s rector Billie Abraham said.

From noon to 1 p.m. beginning Monday and continuing through Thursday during the week leading up to Easter, First Baptist, the Church of the Holy Trinity, Crawford Street United Methodist and First Presbyterian will sponsor Holy Week luncheons. The event is free and open to the public and will include a spiritual message given by one of the ministers from each of the four participating churches.

The Schedule is, beginning at noon each day in the fellowship hall of each church:

  • Monday, April 10 — The Church of the Holy Trinity, the Rev. Beth Palmer
  • Tuesday, April 11 — Crawford Street United Methodist Church, the Rev. Cary Stockett
  • Wednesday, April 12 — First Presbyterian, the Rev. Tim Brown
  • Thursday, April 13 — First Baptist, Dr. Matt Buckles

Other Holy week events in Vicksburg include:

Wednesday, April 12:

  • Hawkins Methodist Church will host a symbolic Seder service at 6 p.m. 
  • Christ Episcopal will host a healing service with Eucharist at 12:15 p.m.
  • Holy Trinity will have Stations of the Cross at 5:30 p.m.

Thursday, April 13:

  • Hawkins Methodist Church will host Holy Thursday service with communion at 6 p.m.
  • Christ Episcopal will host a Maundy Thursday service with foot washing and the stripping of the altar at 6 p.m.
  • St. Mary Catholic Church will have a service at 7 p.m.
  • First Presbyterian will host a Passover supper at 5 p.m. followed by a service at 7 p.m.
  • Crawford Street United Methodist will host a Maundy Thursday supper at 5:15 p.m. followed by a service at 6 p.m. and an Easter egg hunt for older children. 
  • Holy Trinity will have a Maundy Thursday service with washing of the feet and communion at 6 p.m.

Friday, April 14:

  • Hawkins Methodist Church will host a service with a chancel choir cantata at 7p.m. They will be performing “We were there.”
  • Christ Episcopal will have a service with Eucharist at 12:15 p.m.
  • St. Mary Catholic Church will have Stations of the Cross at 3 p.m.
  • Holy Trinity will have a service at noon.