Community service is Sunday

Published 11:37 pm Friday, November 18, 2011

With Thanksgiving on the horizon, the Black Belt Ministerial Association will hold its quarterly community wide worship service Sunday.

The latest edition of the increasingly popular events will mark the first time Carl Williams of First Baptist Church in Demopolis has spoke for such an occasion.

“It’s a good opportunity,” Williams said. “I am looking forward to it.”

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Amid struggling economic conditions and the myriad of problems that accompany such setbacks, finding the positive can be incredibly difficult. But Williams will accentuate just that with his Thanksgiving-themed message as he attempts to illustrate to the crowd in attendance just how blessed the nation remains.

“I just want to remind everybody how blessed we are, even in a down economy, even with all the uncertainty that we are facing,” Williams said. “As a community and a state and a nation, we still have a lot to be thankful for.”

While Williams’ point of view may not be that of the majority, his explanation for his perspective is simple and difficult to argue.

“What I really want to remind people is that God has blessed us,” Williams said. “We are where we are because of His hand on us.”

While Williams speaks to the attending adults and older children in the First Baptist Church sanctuary, the younger students present will be in the fellowship hall where Charlie Atchison and her long-time friend, Andy, will deliver the program.

“Charlie Atchison is going to speak to the kids,” Williams said of Atchison and her ventriloquist dummy, Andy. “The children’s ministry of Church Aflame is going to lead the worship for the kids.”

The latest community wide worship service will be the first to feature a children’s program, an idea Williams said was first presented by Charlie’s husband, Hank, the preacher at Gallion Baptist Church.

“Hank really, I kind of credit him for casting the vision on this thing for having the kids’ service,” Williams said.

The design of the children’s service, according to Williams, is to encourage families with young children to attend the community wide service while also promoting fellowship between the young people of the community.

“We’re hoping that it is going to encourage more of the families to come out and be a part of the community service,” Williams said. “But also, to encourage those younger kids as they grow up to not only go to school together and play sports together, but also to worship together and establish a good foundation.”

For those young people not quite old enough for the children’s service, there will be a nursery available.

“The nursery will be for any kid from baby up through preschool. The kids service will be for K-4. Anyone 5th grade and up can go to the community service in the sanctuary,” Williams said. “The community service will be in the sanctuary. The kids worship will be in our fellowship hall at First Baptist. Hopefully it will grow as we go into next year and beyond. We’re hopeful that it will bring more families in and it will be a good thing. We’re hoping it will grow into something big.”

Both services are scheduled to being at 6 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 20 at First Baptist Church.