Monday, September 14, 2015

Community joins together at Service of Peace and Hope

Rick Smith spoke at the Community Service of Peace and Hope at Walter Bradley Park on Sunday.

Story and photos by Adrian Rudd; video report by Brittany Forte'
University of Kentucky School of Journalism and Telecommunications

Nothing but smiles, laughs, and ”Amens!” were exchanged Sunday as congregations from six Midway churches gathered at Walter Bradley Park. About 80 attendees graced the annual Community Worship Service of Peace and Hope for an outdoor service and picnic as a way to remember the tragedy of Sept. 11, 2001.

Kitty Wieschhoff, a member of Midway
Presbyterian Church, enjoyed the
service with her dog, Daphne. 
The service began in 2011 on the 10th anniversary of the attack on New York’s twin towers, and the tradition has continued each year. While none of the participating churches were directly affected by 9/11, organizers said people still needed a sense of community to reflect on a time of great loss in our nation.

Rather than focusing on the sadness and devastation of 9/11, the event is aimed towards spreading hope, love and positivity throughout Midway churches.

“We are here celebrating the hope and unity that He gives us,” Mary Weese of Midway Presbyterian Church said in welcoming the combined congregation.

The service allowed time for an official each church to speak. Rev. Dr. Marian McClure Taylor, board member of the Kentucky Region of the Christian Church, Disciples of Christ, gave the sermon.

Churches in attendance were Midway United Methodist, St. Matthew A.M.E., Midway Christian, New Union Christian, Historic Second Christian, and Midway Presbyterian.

Eugenia Johnson-Smith, a member of St.
Matthew's A.M.E. Church, filled her plate.
“The event has grown since it started,” said the Rev. Heather McColl, minister at Midway Christian. “This was the first year for New Union to join.” New Union is at the eastern tip of greater Midway, between Faywood and the Fayette County line.

Immediately following the service, the crowd enjoyed hot dogs, hamburgers and socializing at the picnic.

As Jim Nance, a member of Midway Christian, simply pointed out, nothing brings people together better than food.

“We get all the churches together to celebrate our Christian faith,” Nance said, “plus, everybody loves to eat.”

Here's a minute-and-a-half video report on the service, from Brittany Forte' of the Midway Messenger:

MIDWAY SERVICE REDO from Al Cross on Vimeo.

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