Churches are hosting egg hunts and Palm Sunday services this weekend as Holy Week is ushered in and Easter approaches. Easter, when Christians celebrate the Resurrection of Jesus Christ, is on Sunday, April 16. Congregations lead up to Easter with special services marking the final week in the life of Jesus.
In downtown Durham on Sunday, April 9, three churches will join together to begin Palm Sunday with its annual palm processional. Members of First Presbyterian Church, St. Philip’s Episcopal Church and Trinity United Methodist Church will gather in the parking lot of First Presbyterian, 305 E. Main St., at 10:15 a.m. Sunday, April 9. The public is invited to bring their own palms or leafy branches. After the palms are blessed, everyone will proceed around the block together, commemorating when Jesus rode into Jerusalem on a donkey and was greeted by a joyful crowd. The procession will stop in front of each church to bless its ministries, and then participants will depart to gather in each church for their 11 a.m. worship services.
First Presbyterian and St. Philip’s Episcopal churches will join for another Holy Week event on Good Friday. The churches will hold a Good Friday service at noon April 14 that will include Stations of the Cross. It will be a family-friendly spiritual pilgrimage and meditation of the Passion Week texts in Durham’s downtown context. The service will begin at St. Philip’s, 403 E. Main St., and will end at First Presbyterian at 305 E. Main St.
More Palm Sunday services, egg hunts, and special services for Maundy Thursday, Good Friday and Easter:
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Easter at Epworth UMC
Epworth United Methodist Church will host an Eggstravaganza and special services for Holy Week. The Eggstravaganza will be held from 3 to 5 p.m. Saturday, April 8 at the church, 3002 Hope Valley Road in Durham. It will feature egg hunts, a bounce house, treats and games. All children are welcome.
On Sunday, April 9, Epworth will hold Palm Sunday services at 8:45 a.m. and 11 a.m., and children will process with palms. All congregations will receive palms to wave. The Chancel Choir and Praise Team will present special music. A Holy Thursday service will be held at 7 p.m. April 13 and includes the choir’s cantata, “Shadows” by Douglas Wagner, following by communion and stripping of the altar.
On Easter, April 16, there will be services at 8:30 a.m., 9 a.m. and 11 a.m. The 9 a.m. service will be contemporary, and the 11 a.m. service will include music by the Chancel Choir and Epworth Instrumental Ensemble, including G.F. Handel’s “Hallelujah Chorus” from the Messiah. Communion will be served at all services and is open to all. Nursery provided up to age 4. For information, call 919-489-6557.
Easter play at Mt. Calvary
The Mt. Calvary Missionary Baptist Church Performing Arts Team will present an Easter play, “We Were There,” at 4 p.m. Sunday April 9. There will also be pre-play children's talent performances. The church is located at 8021 Stagville Road in Bahama.
‘Seven Last Words of Christ’ at St. Mark
The music department of St. Mark AME Zion Church will present “The Seven Last Words of Christ” at 6 p.m. on Good Friday, April 14. The praise and worship service will feature music and narration. St. Mark AME Zion is located at 531 S. Roxboro St. in Durham. For information, call 919-688-2092.
Easter service at Covenant Presbyterian
Covenant Presbyterian Church invites the public to the Easter/Resurrection Sunday worship service at 10 a.m. April 16 at 2620 Weaver St. in Durham. The speaker will be Rev. Joseph Moran, retired Southeast USA Director of Church World Service and the CROP Hunger Walk Program.
‘Seven Last Words of Christ’ at Mt. Calvary UCC
To observe Good Friday, Mt. Calvary United Church of Christ, 1715 Athens Ave. in Durham, will present “the Seven Last Words of Christ” at 7 p.m. April 14 by the church’s deacon board.
Maundy Thursday, Easter at First Presbyterian
First Presbyterian Church will hold a Maundy Thursday worship service at 7 p.m. Thursday, April 13. The service will Holy Communion commemorates Jesus’ Last Supper with his disciples. A light supper will be served at 6:15 p.m. in the Fellowship Hall prior to the service in the sanctuary.
On Good Friday, a 7 p.m. April 15 Tenebrae service of darkness will be held in the sanctuary. E
aster Sunday services begin with a brief service in the Memorial Garden at 8:30 a.m. on April 16. Services with Holy Communion will be held at 9 a.m. and 11 a.m. in the sanctuary. The offering will go to the One Great Hour of Sharing to provide funds to disaster, hunger and poverty relief programs. First Presbyterian is located at 305 E. Main St. in Durham. For information, call 919-682-5511.
Holy Week at St. Paul’s Lutheran
St. Paul's Lutheran Church, ELCA will observe Palm Sunday with 8:30 a.m. and 11 a.m. worship services on April 9. For Maundy Thursday, there will be services at noon and 7 p.m. April 13.
A “This Far By Faith” Stations of the Cross service will be held at noon April 14, followed by a Tenebrae service at 7 p.m. On Saturday, April 15 there will be a vigil of Easter service at 7 p.m.
On Easter Sunday, services are at 8:30 a.m. and 11 a.m., with breakfast at 9:30 a.m. and Children’s Egg Hunt at 10:15 a.m. April 16. St. Paul’s is located at 1200 W. Cornwallis Road in Durham. For information, call 919-489-3214.
Children’s Easter at Edgewood Baptist
Edgewood Baptist Church, 1807 Infinity Road in Durham, will host a Children’s Easter Celebration at 4 p.m. Sunday, April 9. There will be snacks, crafts and an egg hunt for children ages 2 to sixth grade. For information, call 919-471-2664.
Palm Sunday, Tenebrae services at Christus Victor Lutheran
Christus Victor Church, 1615 E. NC 54, Durham, will hold a Palm Sunday service at 10 a.m. Sunday, April 9 and Stations of the Cross at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 12 during Holy Week. On Maundy Thursday, April 13, there will be a service of the Last Supper and stripping of the altar at 7:30 p.m.
On Good Friday, April 14, there will be a Tenebrae service at 7:30 p.m., and on Easter Sunday, April 16, there will be a sunrise service at 6:30 a.m. and worship service at 10 a.m. Between those services, breakfast will be served and there will be an Easter Egg Hunt at 9:15 a.m., also. For information, visit Christus-Victor.org or call 919-544-7195.
Easter at New Hope Presbyterian
New Hope Presbyterian Church begins its Easter services with a sunrise service at 7:30 a.m. April 16 with music by the New Hope Chancel Choir and music director Allen Amos singing “Hear the News This Easter Morn” by Joel Raney, accompanied by handbells and trumpets at both the sunrise and 11 a.m. worship services.
Communion will be served at the 11 a.m. service, which will end with the Hallelujah Chorus from Handel’s Messiah. Breakfast will be served after the sunrise service. New Hope is located at 4701 NC 86 in Chapel Hill. For information, visit newhopepresusa.org or call 919-942- 4710.
Joint Easter sunrise service of Mt. Zoar and New Calvary
Mt. Zoar Missionary Baptist Church and New Calvary Baptist Church will join for a combined Easter sunrise service at 6 a.m. April 16 at New Calvary, 3024 Burton Road in Durham. Rev. N.T. Davis will preach. Breakfast will be served. Sunday School will be held at Mt. Zoar, 2400 Cheek Road, at 8:30 a.m. and a worship service at 9:30 a.m.
Easter musical at Bahama Baptist
Bahama Baptist Church’s adult choir will present an Easter musical “Love Unending” at 5 p.m. April 9. Its Good Friday service will be held at 7 p.m. April 14. An Easter Egg Hunt for children through fifth grade will be held at 10 a.m. April 15.
The Easter sunrise service will be held at 6:15 a.m. April 16 at 8204 Willardville Station Road. All other events will be held at the church, 7917 Willardville Station Road in Bahama. After the sunrise service, a covered dish breakfast will be served at 8:30 a.m. There will also be a 10:30 a.m. worship service.