Bethel Assembly of God Pastor Lemuel Perry said he will conduct a simple worship service for Christmas. (File photo)
By Tonya Garner: CNJ staff writer
The story is as old as time; originating from the New Testament Gospel of Matthew. The saga chronicles the miracle of the virgin birth that resulted in Jesus Christ being brought into the world.
With Christmas falling on a Sunday this year, Clovis pastors of various denominations are planning to deliver the “Christmas Story” from their pulpits.
Lemuel Perry, pastor at Bethel Assembly of God, said his sermon will focus on the incarnation of Christ or God becoming man through the miracle of the virgin birth. “It is the original Christmas story,” Perry said, “ which is taken from Luke Chapter one.” Pastor of the church for three and a half years, Perry said he will be conducting a “simple worship service.
“I expect attendance to be down due to people traveling,” Perry said.
According to Pastor Jon Forrest, members of First Christian Church will perform hour-long praise service Sunday morning.
“We will have songs, special music and scripture readings which will focus on the first coming of Christ,” Forrest said. “I will probably give a short devotional on the miracle birth, too.”
The pastor staff at Central Baptist Church will be spreading the same message but in a more elaborate way, according to Pastor Mike Eberhardt. Eberhardt said he, along with a fellow pastor at the church, plans to present an “in character drama” depicting the birth of Christ from several different perspectives. The Baptist pastor said the events of Jesus’ birth will be acted out through the eyes of a Wise Man and a shepherd.
According to Eberhardt, the pastors will also portray the common man’s perspective.
“We will also speak about what God was thinking as he watched the drama of Jesus being born,” Eberhardt said. “We know his (God) mind and we know his heart, but we can’t even begin to understand his perspective.”
Eberhardt said he truly believes God must have had a smile on his face as he watched his son come into the world, but there had to be profound sadness as well, knowing how it would have to end.
“Our main focus for Christmas morning will be the wondrous gift God gave us,” Eberhardt.
Clovis resident Mae Latham said she looks forward to hearing the story of Jesus’ birth recounted every Christmas.
“I love that Christmas falls on a Sunday this year,” Latham said. “I think everyone should go to church to remember the reason for the season.”