Thanksgiving Eve service in Rush City

by Amy Doeun

Contributing writer 

For many years now, the churches of Rush City have held a combined service one evening every year: the Wednesday before Thanksgiving.
The All Church Thanksgiving Eve Service will be held in the Rush City High School Auditorium at 6:30 p.m. Nov. 23. Pies and treats will follow the service.
This service has become a time of collaboration and celebration for the community. Each year all the area churches host the event. Each of the pastors speak on a theme, and the praise team from each church shares a musical selection.
This year Restoration Church in Rush City will host the event at the high school. In years past, 150 people or more have attended this service. The Restoration Church building would have difficulty accommodating that number, so the location was switched to the Rush City High School auditorium.
Cary Johnson, pastor of Restoration Church, said that he feels this service is a great way to “model what it means to know and trust in God in a way that breaks down denominations.”
“We want to reach into the community and show it’s all about Jesus; we just approach him in slightly different ways,” he continued.
The theme for this year is the hymn “Be Thou My Vision.” Each of the pastors will take a verse and preach on that subject. The praise teams will still be able to present selections and then at the end they will all join together and sing the hymn.
Johnson said he picked the hymn “because it is an old hymn but also can be sung in a very modern way. … I hope it will show who Jesus is and his love and keep people from feeling like it is all about one kind of church.”
He said he feels the many different denominations can give people the wrong idea.
“The world might say, ‘We can’t get the story straight; what is there in that for me?”
The location at the school may have an added benefit.
“I hope since we are having it at the school that would give people the opportunity to come that would rather walk into a school than a church,” Johnson said.
Another new addition this year is the prison chaplain.
“We have a new chaplain at the prison,” Johnson explained. “He lives in town and wants to be part of the event.”

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