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God’s Way Baptist holds live nativity

With Christmas less than a week away, God’s Way Baptist Church gave Pike County residents a chance to get a taste of what the first Christmas may have been like Sunday night.

The church played host to its second live nativity, as well as its annual candlelight vigil, and both events were a good time for all involved.

“It was absolutely wonderful,” said Rev. Chad Teal, the church’s pastor. “We just had a great time tonight. We had two services with different people at each, and I think everybody just had a super, super time. People also enjoyed seeing the animals.”

This year was the second straight year God’s Way held a live nativity, and while the turnout was strong, it was not as high as the attendance for last year’s nativity.

“I’m not really sure how many we had, but I don’t think it was as many as last year,” Teal said. “I know a lot of other churches were having their services tonight.”

Still, for those who attended, both events were an opportunity for people to be reminded of the reason for the season.

“Sometimes we all get so wrapped up in family, friends, parties and buying and receiving gifts,” None of those things are necessarily bad, but it kind of steals the attention and the focus from the true point of Christmas, which is to celebrate the birth of the King of Kings.”

Much to Teal and the rest of the church’s delight, the event was a rousing success, bringing Holiday cheer to all who attended.

“The live nativity was a big blessing,” Teal said. “I mean, who doesn’t love a camel? But, it helped to show the children who may have a hard time relating to that time period what it may have been like. More than anything, this is for the community. This is really our gift to the community every year.”

While the events were community-oriented, they were also the culmination of many months of preparation on the part of God’s Way’s members.

“I know we’ve been working on this for months,” Teal said. “Most churches start preparing for Christmas in September or early October, and we were no different this year.”

Even though it takes plenty of planning and effort to put on these events, Teal said people can expect to see them both back again in 2010.

“We most definitely plan on doing this again,” Teal said.

“We’ve been having our candlelight vigil for years, so we’ll continue this. Hopefully people received a blessing from it this year.”