Let the celebration begin! Local churches to host Easter sunrise services

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By Kirsten Laskey

Some things are just too good to wait. As a result, many local churches will continue the long-standing tradition of celebrating Jesus Christ’s resurrection through sunrise Easter services Sunday.

As the sun peaks through nighttime darkness, it is more than just a pretty picture; the scene is symbolic of what transpired a long time ago. There will be two sunrise services to celebrate Christ rising from the grave. Both will begin at 6:30 a.m. One will take place at Ashley Pond while the other will be at Overlook Park in White Rock.

Trinity on the Hill Episcopal Church, the United Church of Los Alamos, Christian Church and First United Methodist Church are taking part in the worship at Ashley Pond, which also includes live music from Quemazon Brass.

“The sunrise service is always a great event,” said Rev. Doug Partin of the Christian Church. “There are numerous churches in town that take part in it, which is a great witness to the unity of the church.” He added, “It’s a confirming event of our faith. It’s good time for families to come together. It’s a reminder that early morning on the third day, Jesus rose from the dead. It’s a connection to that historical event.”

Rev. Don Childer, of United Church, agreed. “This is an ecumenical service that has been going on for many years. It is simply very good way for us to celebrate the beginning of Easter with other churches, together.”

While several Los Alamos churches will head to Ashley Pond, the White Rock Presbyterian Church, White Rock Baptist Church and White Rock United Methodist will host a service at Overlook Park. After the service, tea, coffee and doughnuts will be offered at White Rock United Methodist. “I think it’s appealing to Christians because the tradition is as early as the women went to the tomb, the resurrection had already happen,” Rev. Harry Chronis of White Rock Presbyterian, said. “To get there at sunrise is a way for us to get in touch with extraordinary circumstances of Jesus’ resurrection. It’s … just a way of honoring how dramatic this change is that God has worked.” Chronis added, “It's just a wonderful way to start the day; (while) most of us worship in our own churches, (this is) something we can do together and it testifies to a deep unity that we share in a resurrected savior.”