On Faith

On Faith: South Carolina congressman to speak at St. Paul AME on Sunday

April 8, 2014 

U.S. Rep. James E. Clyburn will speak at St. Paul AME Church at 11 a.m. Sunday as part of the church's 150th anniversary celebration.

During April, the church’s yearlong celebration will feature ministries and activities that are impacting society.

“From great preaching, teaching, worship, health fairs, community gatherings and community outreach, the year promises to be memorable,” said the Rev. Thomas O. Nixon, senior pastor.

Other speakers this month will include Dennis Gaddy, director of the Ex-Offender Re-Entry Program; Rodney Trice, associate superintendent for the Chapel Hill Carrboro City Schools; and Dr. Allen Mask, a Raleigh physician.

Clyburn represents South Carolina’s sixth congressional district and is the third ranking Democrat in the House of Representatives. He was elected to Congress in 1993 and rose through the ranks to became the Majority Whip in 2006.

He has worked at the national level to address the needs of diverse communities and to advance into law historic measures to reduce discrimination and disparity.

Also part of the church's celebration is a Community Cookout on Saturday, sponsored by men of the church. It is set from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. in Phoenix Place Subdivision playground, located in the Rogers Road community.

St. Paul AME church was organized in 1864 by 10 black families who came together not only to worship, but to pave a way for community building and self determination in an environment free of barriers around race and cultural differences.

The church continues to foster this attitude and to fulfill its mission by developing St. Paul Community Village to include recreational facilities, a wellness center, an historical museum and mixed generational affordable housing.

The church is located at 101 N. Merritt Mill Road.

Holy Week services

Special worship services for Holy Week have been announced at University Presbyterian Church, beginning on Palm Passion Sunday, April 13, with services at 8:30 and 11 a.m.

Maundy Thursday, April 17, the service at 7:30 p.m. will include Holy Communion. On Good Friday, a 7:30 p.m. Service of Tenebrae will be held.

On Easter Sunday, services are at 8:30 and 11 a.m. and will include the One Great Hour of Sharing, a special offering that helps support the work of Presbyterian Disaster Assistance, the Self-Development of People program and the Presbyterian Hunger Program.

All are welcome to visit this community of faith, located at 209 E. Franklin St.

Bell choir concert

An advanced bell choir and select a cappella ensemble will combine their talents to present a joint concert at 8 p.m. Friday at United Church of Chapel Hill, 1321 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.

Admission is free. An offering will be collected to support NAACP of North Carolina.

The concert will feature performances by the Bronze Voices bell choir and the Chamber Singers, two United Church musical groups that regularly provide music for worship.

The ensembles will perform both together and separately in the program that includes music ranging from the Renaissance to the present.

The Chamber Singers, founded in 2004, sing in worship monthly and for such special services as Christmas Eve and Maundy Thursday. The 15-voice a cappella group, selected by audition, also sings a Mass during Sunday worship during Lent.

Under direction of Milo Fryling, the ensemble sings a repertoire ranging from 16th century polyphony to contemporary sacred literature and spirituals.

The Chamber Singers concert program will include Morten Lauridsen's “O Nata Lux,” Palestrina's “Exsultate Justi,” and the rhythmic “The Word Was God” by Josephanye Powell, among other selections.

Bronze Voices is a five-octave handbell choir formed six years ago when it was determined there were not enough bells to accommodate would-be ringers at United Church.

Under the direction of Dan Harder, the select group of experienced ringers contributes regularly to worship and performs annual concerts. In this concert, Bronze Voices will ring arrangements of favorite hymn tunes and original compositions of sacred music, as well as some surprise contemporary numbers.

United Church’s 2013-14 concert series will conclude with a 4 p.m. concert on May 18, featuring a varied program of sacred music by the church's Chancel Choir in advance of the choir's June tour to Germany.

Buddhist believing

A workshop called “Believing is Seeing,” the role of faith and Buddhist insights into what is real, is set from 10 a.m. to noon Saturday at Kosala Buddhist Center, 711 W. Rosemary St., Carrboro.

The cost is $20, $12 for students and seniors.

Participants in this workshop will learn methods and meditations used to see “the true nature of things and start finding freedom from the assumptions that create suffering in the mind.” No previous meditation experience is required and everyone is welcome.

Passover seder

Members of the Jewish community are invited to the annual Passover seder at Kehillah Synagogue, 1200 Mason Farm Road, at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 15.

This Jewish holiday commemorates the exodus of the ancient Israelites from Egypt. During the seder meal, participants retell and examine the Exodus story. Kehillah's Rabbi Jennifer Feldman, who will lead the seder, describes Passover as “an opportunity for all Jews to come together to tell our shared story of moving from slavery to freedom and to understand the universal meaning of the message of redemption.

“At Kehillah's Seder, the retelling of the story of Exodus occurs through words, songs and entertaining and interactive recounting of the plagues, along with other special activities that will keep children interested and engaged.

“The text used during the Seder has been carefully designed to be fully accessible to Hebrew and non-Hebrew speakers alike,” she said.

Last year, more than 130 people attended the Passover Seder, the most highly attended Jewish ritual, said the rabbi, who attributes this to the fact that this event offers Jews an opportunity to personally be part of the Jewish story and to bring their own voices to telling the story.

The cost is $50 for adults and $28 for children under 12. The deadline is April 10. For tickets, contact admin@kehillahsynagogue.org or call 919-942-8914.

Lenten quilt exhibit

The Fine Arts Committee of Binkley Baptist, 1712 Willow Drive, has a Lenten Quilt Exhibit on display at the church during Lent.

These are quilts made by church members and their families, mainly their mothers and grandmothers, and may be viewed weekdays from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. or on Sunday mornings before or after worship at 11 a.m.

“Lent is a season for piecing together the fabrics of our lives. We hope these intricate patterns encourage us to renew our commitment to peace, justice and love,” said Linda Testoris.

Send your faith news to flo.johnston314@gmail.com or call 910-361-4135.

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