• 79°

Community revival begins on May 23

The community Thanksgiving service given last year has inspired the Blackbelt Christian Ministerial Association to hold community-wide revival services on every fifth Sunday within a month.

However, things don’t often work out the way they should, and the first service will be held on Sunday, May 23, at 6 p.m. at the Church Aflame World Outreach, located behind the Sonic restaurant in Demopolis on U.S. Highway 80. The date was changed to allow for Memorial Day weekend activities.

Other community-wide revival services are planned for Aug. 29 and Nov. 21. The BCMA decided not to have a revival on the fifth Sunday in October, which will be Halloween, and opted to have it on the Sunday before Thanksgiving.

Dr. Alan Atkins , the pastor at Fairhaven Baptist Church and the vice president of the BCMA, will bring the message at the May 23 service.

“The program will consist of a community choir led by Ed Rush of First Baptist Church,” said Mickey Green, the pastor of Church Aflame and the secretary of the BCMA. “After that, there will be a preaching service by Alan Atkins.

“What we’re wanting to do is have revival-style services to get the people of Demopolis and the surrounding area stirred up for God. It’s not going to be a traditional ecumenical service; these are service we’re having to pray and seek and preach about revival.”

“Basically, it will be an evangelistic-type service,” said Frank Stiff, the pastor of Saints Tabernacle Church of God in Christ and the treasurer of the BCMA. “It is designed to pull people together and to unify the public in a city-wide worship service.

“We are striving for revival for the people in Demopolis and the surrounding area. That is our prayer. We pray for that every day. We believe that for the ills of our nation, we need revival. We need God’s spirit in our midst among His people. So, we are trying to get the people together — black and white, interdenominational — to worship God the way that He intended to be worshiped, at that is in unison.”

Green said that people enjoyed last year’s Thanksgiving service and said there should be more services like it.

“This is a good opportunity for us to come together to worship and fellowship together,” said Lacornia Harris, the pastor at New Aimwell Baptist Church in Uniontown and president of the BCMA. “This will strengthen the relationship that we are trying to build in the community.

“We are trying to prepare ourselves to have a city-wide revival sometime in 2011 or ’12, so what we thought we’d do is have these miniature services until we build up to the revival.”

The best thing about the community-wide service is that it won’t be based on any particular denomination.

“We want to invite everybody out,” Harris said. “This is not a service that is predicated on any denominations. It is predicated on people who believe in the Lord and want to come together to worship and praise the Lord.”

“I think it’s the grandest thing that has happened in my tenure here,” Green said. “I think the pastors are excited about it. We are venturing into an area that we’ve never known. We are going into each other’s churches, and we’ve never had a mixed church choir before. It’s going to be a wonderful experience.”