Churches across Tooele County have planned a variety of special Easter services this weekend, which many anticipate will see some of the best-attended services of the year.
Several local congregations will hold multiple services this weekend to accommodate increased interest on account of the Easter holiday.
St. Barnabas’ Episcopal Church will hold three Easter-related services this weekend, with a worship service Thursday at 6:30 p.m., a Good Friday service at 6:30 p.m., and a service on Easter Sunday at 10 a.m.
The Mountain of Faith Lutheran Church will host a Good Friday service at 7 p.m., and will have a community breakfast beginning at 9:15 a.m. on Easter Sunday. The worship service that will follow at 10 a.m. will focus on joy and the resurrection, the Reverend Rick Ehrheart said.
“[Easter] is always a joyful occasion, so we’ll be talking about the joy in life that comes from the resurrection, he said.
St. Marguerite Catholic Church has planned numerous Easter-related services to take place throughout the end of the week, including the traditional Easter vigil, which will likely be one of the best-attended services of the year, said Reverend Samuel Dinsdale. The Catholic congregation’s celebration will begin with a mass celebrating the Last Supper at 7 p.m. Thursday. A Good Friday service will follow on Friday at 7 p.m., and the Easter vigil, where new adult members of the congregation will be baptized, will begin at 8:30 p.m. on Saturday. Easter Sunday services are as follows: a Spanish mass at 8:30 a.m., an English mass at 10:30 a.m. followed by an Easter egg hunt, and an English mass at 12:30 p.m.
St. Marguerite is far from the only church hosting an egg hunt this year. The New Life Christian Fellowship has planned four children’s Easter egg hunts, which will follow four separate Easter Sunday services. Two services, one beginning at 9 a.m. and the other at 11 a.m., will take place at the church’s Lake Point location. The other two, also at 9 a.m. and 11 a.m., will take place at the Tooele location. All four services will include upbeat music and a biblical sermon.
The United Methodist Church has planned an Easter celebration on Sunday, with worship services at 11 a.m. followed by an Easter egg hunt and fellowshipping at England Acres park.
Cornerstone Baptist Church will host a community Easter Egg hunt on Saturday, from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. for all children through the sixth grade.
In addition to an Easter egg hunt at 11 a.m. on Sunday, the Reverend Jeff Sinner said the Bible Baptist Church has planned what he called a “semi-sunrise” worship service at 9 a.m. on Easter. The service will feature traveling evangelist Dennis Parker as a guest speaker.
Local sunrise services for Easter have become slightly more common this year, with the First Baptist Church planning to start a new tradition this year with a special 7:30 a.m. sunrise service on Easter. The church will also host its traditional Easter cantata at 11 a.m. on Sunday morning, and will serve breakfast between the two services for those who would like to attend both, the Reverend Jon McCartney said.
“We’re doing some new things, just to encourage people and to administer to different needs,” he said.
The Tooele Springs Calvary Chapel will also have a sunrise service on Easter Sunday, starting at 6:30 a.m. at Tooele City Park. A second service will follow at 10 a.m. at the Main Street chapel.
Other churches plan to hold regular worship services this weekend, with sermons related to the season.
The Tooele Christian Fellowship has planned a special Easter sermon, to begin at 11 a.m. on Sunday. The service will feature upbeat music, and child care will be provided.
Likewise, the Stansbury Park Baptist Church will hear the final part of a two-part sermon on Jesus Christ and the Passover during an Easter Sunday service beginning at 9:30 a.m. The church’s new pastor, the Reverend Andy Lynch, said he is still planning for an influx of visitors this weekend, because so many Christians make a pointed effort to attend church on Easter and Christmas.
The Tooele Transcript-Bulletin was unable to reach several other local congregations. Those churches, in addition to LDS congregations across the county, may or may not have special services planned this weekend. Congregants are encouraged to contact their local clergy for information.