For many, weekends can be as hectic as weekdays.
The Rev. Joel Simpson, associate pastor of Mt. Zion United Methodist Church in Cornelius, said church leaders there have noticed that between activities such as sports and traveling, more and more people are busy on Saturday and Sunday.
“We’ve seen a trend, and I think every church has, where people aren’t attending church every Sunday anymore,” he said.
In response, Mt. Zion launched a new Wednesday night service.
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Simpson said the service is different from Sunday’s worship.
“It’s more contemplative, it’s more dressed down,” he said. “The person preaching wears jeans and a T-shirt or polo. We have acoustic instruments; guitar, bass, hand drum.”
The service is held in the church’s sanctuary, which gives it a traditional feel, Simpson said. Time for reflection and prayer is built into the service, where participants are encouraged to connect with God through means such as singing, prayer and silence.
“We want it to be a mid-week renewal,” Simpson said.
The service’s first sermon series, which Simpson is preaching, is called “Questioning Jesus: Myth or Messiah” and will answer questions that Christians and others may have about Jesus.
It is covering topics such as “Was Jesus a real person?” and “Did Jesus actually do all those miracles?” Simpson will look at whether Jesus said everything that is in the Bible and question what the death of Jesus did for the world.
“I think people in general, in the church and outside the church, have a lot of questions about Jesus, about Christianity and about faith,” Simpson said. “We as a church need to be approaching some of those questions.”
The sermon series will allow people the freedom to wrestle with these questions, he said.
Children are welcome to come to the service, and starting in February, children’s activities will be going on at the church during the Wednesday service.
The service will continue through the end of April and then break for the summer. Other sermon series on Wednesday nights will include a Lenten series about Jesus’ final hours.
Marty Minchin is a freelance writer: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Want to go?
The community is welcome to the services, which begin 6:30 p.m. on Wednesdays. Mt. Zion United Methodist is at 19600 Zion Ave., Cornelius.
For information, visit www.mtzionumc.net.