Time-honoured Christmas Service this Saturday in Way’s Mills
People from near and far, of all religious backgrounds, are invited to attend the annual Christmas Carol Service that is held in the 123 year-old pioneer church in Way’s Mills: the Church of the Epiphany.
This year’s service takes place on Saturday, December 14th, beginning at 4:00 pm, and officiating Minister Reverend Barbara Wintle hopes the church will, once again, be full. “We hope to have a good crowd. You don’t have to be Anglican or United or anything; it’s just a Christmas Service open to anyone who wants to come,” said Reverend Wintle.
Attending this special service is like going to church in the 1800’s, except for the flashlights. Because the church has no electricity, the service takes place under the warm glow of oil lamps. Those attending bring flashlights to read along with the lessons and sing Christmas carols. Children are particularly welcome at this service and those who attend are invited up to help light the Advent candles.
“We’ll take the “Journey to Bethlehem” as we always do,” said Reverend Wintle from her home in Ayer’s Cliff. Along the way, the audience will meet Adam and Eve, Isaiah, Abraham and Sarah, Jacob and David, Zachariah and Elizabeth, the Angel Gabriel, the angels and the Wise Men.
As is traditional, June Patterson, of Coaticook, will play the church’s pump organ. “We’re lucky to have June; there aren’t many people who know how to play the pump organ,” said Reverend Wintle.
Once the carols have all been sung, a social gathering with refreshments, graciously provided by the community of Way’s Mills and the vicinity, will take place in the community hall on the other side of the bridge, within walking distance of the church.
A fundraising drive has been going for a few years now to preserve this beautiful jewel of a church. Restorative work needs to be done to the wooden exterior walls, the stained glass window, the interior walls, the roof and the bell tower. According to the website of the Church, $60,000 has been raised so far, just $5000 short of what’s needed to receive an additional amount of $150,500 from the provincial government. Two recent ‘emergency’ grants have allowed some muchneeded work to begin on the church spire. Donations can be made at the annual Christmas Carol Service or on the Church of the Epiphany website.