ANDOVER – As a joint effort several churches in the Andover area have agreed to host Lenten luncheons for the community once again this year. (From March 10 edition of The News).
The luncheons are part of a series that many of the churches in the area have been part of for the past several years and are scheduled to be held at various churches throughout the five week series.
At the series community members can expect to find a soup and sandwich lunch provided by a designated church, along with the opportunity to hear a short message led by a pastor from a different church.
The first luncheon in the series was held on Tuesday, March 7 at Andover Christian Church and featured Pastor Gary Morrison from First Church of Christ in Cherry Valley.
“The season of Lent is a season of renewal and our relating to the Lord,” said Morrison in explanation of the event. “My hope is to make families stronger. And just getting together with a group of people is a wonderful thing, something Jesus did.”
Many community members seemed glad to get together as well, including Roberta Hill of Andover. “[I enjoy] the whole thing, the company and eating, ” she said in reference to the Lenten luncheon. “[It’s a] very nice place. I [also] like to come here and walk.”
Andover residents Lillian Miller, Cindy Francesschini and Connie Saxion felt similar.
Normally the three of them attend Andover Christian Church for a Bible study on Tuesdays and this particular day were grateful to gather together for a special lunch and a service.
Keri Bankston was also at the luncheon and spent time helping George and Barb Bosley organize the event by serving egg salad sandwiches, cupcakes, as well as broccoli and cheese or chicken noodle soup.
“I just love that people get to come together and hear a little message and fellowship,” said Bankston.
Of this message given by Morrison began with a discussion about what Lent is about and how it can be a good time to focus on Christ.
“It gives us the chance to reflect back on who He was and still is,” said Morrison. “Lent for me is very special…It’s a time to walk with Jesus a little deeper in obedience…to sharpen up a little bit.”
Aside from his explanation of Lent, Morrison also emphasized the essence of belief, inner passion, as well as the importance of reading scripture by noting how even the most basic verses like John 3:16 can bring life to believers in their walk.
For those interested in the five week Noon Lenten luncheon series, there will be a message from Pastor Bob Gears at First Congregational UCC on Tuesday, March 14, from Pastor Scott Ardrary at Andover United Methodist Church on Tuesday, March 21, from Pastor Ric Harvel or Pastor Jason Hockran on Tuesday, March 28 at Cherry Valley First Church of God, as well as a location that is yet to be determined that will feature Pastor John Germaine speaking on Tuesday, April 4.
The Noon Lenten luncheons are provided by Andover Ministerial Association.
Pictured: Pastor Gary Morrison from First Church of Christ in Cherry Valley presenting a message to the community of Andover during a Lenten luncheon series that began Tuesday, March 7 at Andover Christian Church.