Gospel-Driven Creativity: Resurrection Story Comes Alive in Kentucky
By Brian Ramsey
Now I make known to you, brothers and sisters, the gospel which I preached to you, which you also received, in which you also stand, by which you also are saved…that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures —1 Corinthians 15:1–4 NASB
I know what you are thinking! You have been to a drive-through, and you know what Easter is—but how can one combine the two? Just ask First Church of God in Jackson, Kentucky, and they will tell you of their creation in allowing guests to safely (amid COVID-19) see people (church actors and actresses) demonstrating the different scenes that chronicle the Easter story.
Pastor Bobby Hollon, who has shepherded the flock for the past seventeen years, notes that the church created the concept years ago and has done the presentation on and off several times. This year the format was a perfect fit for a pandemic do-over, and the people were quite enthusiastic to perform. “I think there was an extra buzz of excitement this time; people were ready to be together, fellowship with one another, and do something of value. It was time,” explains Pastor Hollon.
It takes about ten to twelve minutes for cars to tune their radios to a pre-selected station that plays music, and to navigate around the church property to the six to seven sets complete with costumes, players, backgrounds, and props to depict various scenes in the life of Christ. The drive-through begins with Jesus’ birth then progresses to a scene in the marketplace, the garden, the trial, the Last Supper, and then ends with Christ’s crucifixion and his glorious resurrection. This year the church handed out cards that had a list of items to be spotted in each scene. Families sometimes drove through up to five times so that they could check all items and turn the card in for a drawing. The winning prizes included Easter gift baskets. Of course, the church people were quite pleased with the multiple visits as it helped the viewers to understand the story even better.
With nearly 70-percent participation from the church (from all age groups), the congregation acted for three hours on two separate nights for all the viewers to enjoy. This was, naturally, after the delicious dinner provided by other church members! Pastor Bobby says that there is a place for anyone to serve—from the making of costumes, to the sets, to dinner and a host of other tasks. It is an “all-hands-on-deck” event.
The greatest reward—in addition to the wonderful display of the life of Christ—was the profession of faith made by some of the visitors to the exhibit! What more would we need than for the gospel to become real to a lost soul? Still, the church family had a blessed time, and the Resurrection story became more real to all.
For more information on the how-to of this pageant, you may contact the church at email@example.com or call 606-693-1918.
Dr. Brian Ramsey resides in Indianapolis, Indiana, with his wife of thirty-six years, Tammy, who has taught as a Kindergarten teacher at Liberty Christian School in Anderson for over twenty-five years. He has two married children and four grandchildren—all girls, and their wishes have absolutely no extra control over him. He currently works with his son who owns a magazine, and he writes for various entities. He is very involved in his church in the Soul Care Ministry, and he loves to read, watch and play sports, and teach college classes.
Interested in best practices concerning COVID-19 response? Our trusted partners at Brotherhood Mutual can help. Watch their on-demand webinar. Learn more about the response of Church of God Ministries to the coronavirus (COVID-19), including resources for you and your church, at www.jesusisthesubject.org/theway.