Pine Street Baptist Church, Covington, kicked off its Homecoming weekend, “There’s No Place Like Home,” with a short service followed by a fish fry lunch on the church’s lawn, last Saturday.
“Today’s celebration is one for the living but also honors those who have gone before us,” said Rev. Frances Stewart as she opened the service. “No matter where we go. No matter how far we venture, it’s always good to know that we can come back home,” added Stewart before giving the Call to Worship.
Lolita Smith rendered a touching praise dance and Clarice Halsey, Rev. Stephanie Clark, pastor, the Online Church, and Teresa Hamm rendered song selections, accompanied by Roger Patterson, Musical Director of the Resurrecting Praise Community Choir.
Minister Karen Ellis and Clark also offered Words of Encouragement before Stewart offered the blessing of the food and gave the benediction. Church and community members enjoyed food and fellowship on the church’s lawn before leaving to prepare for the next day’s Homecoming Service.
Rev. Preston Tyler, pastor, Hill Street Baptist Church, Roanoke, and former pastor of Main Street Missionary Baptist Church, Clifton Forge, was the guest speaker. He also gave the invitation to Christian discipleship. Tyler was accompanied by his congregation, choir, musicians, and ushers.
Charlesetta Preston read a scripture, Milton Helton, Jr. offered a prayer, Minister Ellis gave the welcome, Pearl Miller responded to the welcome, and Linda Cook presented certificates of appreciation to church members: Karen Waldren and Margaret Burks.
“Because you have served the Lord and this church, through the faithful exercise of your gifts and because the body of Christ has been enriched by your faithfulness, we award you this certificate of appreciation” read Cook in part.
Cook acknowledged Waldren’s gift of poetry, her dedicated and committed attendance at church and her singing on various choirs, despite her health challenges. She also acknowledged Burks as former PSBC Music Director and Bible Study Superintendent. And, for continuing to offer her singing voice, despite her health challenges.
Jerry Johnson led the church through the service as the Master of Ceremony. He began calling names of members who had been instrumental in serving at and maintaining the church over the years. Not to neglect any names, he asked members to stand and call out names of their ancestors, so as not to overlook or omit anyone.
Rev. Charlie Ellis, Jr., pastor, gave the closing remarks and the benediction to end the weekend of celebrating the church’s past, present, and future.
Rev. Ellis, the church family, and the Homecoming Committee express their gratitude to extended families for coming back home to celebrate with the church. And, to all who participated in any of the Homecoming events. With special thanks to Tyler and dear friends from Hill Street Baptist Church.