The city of Bethlehem came to the Jackson, Tenn., Church for its 6th annual Starry Night Agape Dinner, Dec. 9, 2016. The fellowship hall, foyer, and outside entrance to the church was transformed into a powerful and humble reminder of the birth and life of Christ. Actor Richard Garey, in period costume, started off the night with “A Shepherd’s Tale,” the story of a humble shepherd who heard the life-changing news of Jesus’ birth.
The evening was designed to affect all the senses. Following the one-man performance, a vegetarian banquet was catered by John and Le Anne Baker. At the entrance to the church, lighted Christmas trees, a cross with a crown of thorns, and a manger with straw were the first things attendees cast their gaze upon. The dining hall offered eight Christmas trees bathed in white lights. The church was beautiful as it also offered candles, trees, and lights in abundance. Two full murals, eighteen feet long, depicting an ancient Israeli town and city, adorned the walls of the dining hall.
During the candlelight meal, music, stories, and video vignettes brought the story of Christ’s birth to life. A communion service culminated the evening on a prayerful note. This year, as in previous years, many of the attendees were friends from the community. A second agape dinner is planned for a growing group of 24 Spanish speaking interests who are being mentored by Alfredo and Mari Acuna. The January 7, 2017, program was presented in Spanish.
Kentucky-Tennessee | February 2017