Mission Mississippi to hold unity service

Published 6:37 pm Saturday, March 19, 2016

Although dividing lines seem to be drawn everywhere, one organization is hoping to use Holy Week as an avenue to encourage unity. On Wednesday, Mission Mississippi of Lincoln County will host a worship service at First United Methodist Center Ministry Center.

The service, which includes singers and pastors from many different denominations, will begin at 11:30 a.m. Beginning with light refreshments and the musical presentations, members invite all those in the community to stop by and help worship and prepare for Easter.

“We understand that people have lunch hours. If you need to leave at any time, don’t feel like you’re interrupting,” Rev. Anne Matthews, co-leader of Mission Mississippi, said.

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For those who know they can only stay for an hour, she said 12 p.m. may be a good time to come in because the pastors will begin to pray at 12:15. Each pastor will be speaking approximately five minutes.

“We’ll be eating and singing until 12:15, so it’ll be very easy to come in late,” she said.

Music will be provided by Andi Cotton and Tyler Bridge, Holy Trinity family, Maxine Dillon of Rhema Word Church, Lillian Lily and Michael McNair.  Prayers will be led by A.C. Herring and Eula Thadison of Holy Trinity, Rich Balkcom of Southway Baptist, Marjorie Walker of Kynett UMC, Bobby Melvin of New Vision, Tom Atkins of FUMC, L.C. Williams of Macedonia M.B. Church and Barbara Buie. Each pastor will focus on such topics as Brookhaven, Mississippi, children, schools and churches.

Mission Mississippi is a statewide organization that works to cross racial and denominational lines to promote unity within Christianity. It was formed in 1992 when author Pat Morley, evangelist Tom Skinner and Jackson businessmen Lee Paris and Victor Smith partnered to share their vision of racial reconciliation. Each chapter is co-led by one white and one black member of the organization.

“We focus on the fact that we all worship Jesus Christ, and we all read the Bible,” Matthews said. ”We may interpret it differently, but we focus on what unites us rather than what divides us.”

Lincoln County’s chapter of Mission Mississippi will have its next meeting Tuesday night at First Baptist Church in assembly room No. 1 at 5:15 p.m.