Congregants from all denominations attended Elkin Presbyterian Church on Good Friday in an ecumenical service that during Holy Week drew speakers and congregants from throughout the area.
The Rev. Melinda Penry of Grassy Creek United Methodist Church delivered the Good Friday message taken from the gospel of John.
After the service, Penry reflected on the service and called the time a special opportunity to worship with “brothers and sisters” committed to the journey of faith.
Both Penry and the Rev. Judith Davis of Jonesville United Methodist Church reminded the importance of women’s contributions to the Christian faith and spoke specifically about how the gospels illustrate the point.
After the service, the Rev. Stuart Taylor of Elkin Presbyterian Church said, “I think there is great strength in diversity of traditions and experience as people.”
During the Good Friday message, organist John Settle choose musical highlights from a historical Christian selection. “When I Survey the Wondrous Cross,” Bach’s “Sheep May Graze Safely” and “Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring.”
Church member Leon Reece sang the solo, “Were You There?” in a Capella. Reece changed the key to a different pitch on each verse in a rendition that Settle called “amazing.”
Reece said his interests still include music after being in radio 40 years. The former owner of local radio station WIFM said the musical choice is a part of Easter. “I was happy to oblige.” He added that he hoped some were blessed by the song.
Elkin Presbyterian members Karen and Robin Chandler also spoke about the meaningfulness of Friday’s service. Karen Chandler said, “Today sets the tone for the season and we had all denominations.”
Robin Chandler said he attended each daily service all week long. He said the week drew good participation from congregants of all denominations in a “real sense of community.” He called the Friday service as being “particularly meaningful and solemn.”
Invited speakers delivering messages at Elkin Presbyterian during Christian Holy Week were Janis McQuade of St. Stephen Catholic Church and Revs. Judith Davis of First United Methodist of Jonesville, Rick Bennett of First Baptist Church of Elkin, Roger Hensley of First Baptist Church of Jonesville and Melinda Penry of Grassy Creek United Methodist Church.
Tanya Chilton may be reached at 336-835-1513 or on Twitter @TanyaTDC.