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Holy Holiday Holds Special Meanings to County churches

For Christians, the Easter season is the holiest time of year.

Sunday, March 31, 2002

For Christians, the Easter season is the holiest time of year. Thoughts turn to the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ, and what this time in history means to modern day people.

"The death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ means that I may have eternal life," said Aaron Childers, pastor of Solida Baptist Church in South Point. "To me, this is a joyous time of year, and it’s an exciting time for the church."

Childers said this time of year, a particular Bible verse often comes to his mind, Matthew 28:6. "He is not here, for He is risen as He said. Come and see the place where the Lord lay."

These were the words spoken to Mary Magdala and Mary the mother of James when they visited Jesus’ tomb on the Sunday after his

crucifixion.

Childers said the the women who went to Jesus’ tomb were looking for something they didn’t find – a body. They didn’t find it because He had risen from the grave. These days, Childers said, people are looking for meaning and not finding it because they, too, are looking in empty places.

"They look for it in drugs and alcohol, but they don’t find it there. They never do," he said.

Solida Baptist Church members staged the play "The Greatest Story Ever Told" Friday evening as part of their Good Friday service. The play will be done again during the morning worship service today at 10:30 a.m.

"There are love stories on TV and in books," Childers said. "But the love that Jesus showed for us was the greatest love story. He died for our sins."

This thought will be echoed throughout area churches during worship services today. Steve Nierman is pastor of St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Ironton.

"Jesus came to show us God’s love," Nierman said. "It was a love more powerful than anything on this earth."

Nierman’s Easter message is titled "Why Are You Weeping?" Like Childers, he sees the Easter season as a joyous time.

"Jesus was victorious over sin, death and the power of the devil when He died for our sins, and then rose again," Nierman said. "As believers, we share that victory."

Nierman said that Christ’s love, shown for us by His death on the cross and His resurrection, is the center of the Christian’s life.

"Other people have other things at the center of their lives – money, their work, themselves. For the Christian, Jesus is, or should be, the focal point of our lives," he said.

Nierman sees the Easter season as one of hope – hope of a better life here on earth, and hope of eternal life someday.

"No one ever did for us what He did, and what He will do," Nierman said. "because the story isn’t finished. It’s a work in progress."