WESTON, W.Va. – Due to COVID-19 guidelines, many churches have had to find creative ways to host Easter service and that’s exactly what the Victory Assembly of God did with their drive-in service.
Roughly two dozen vehicles, with members of the congregation consisting of the old, young and everywhere in between in them, gathered Sunday morning to attend the service in the church’s parking lot.
“It’s wonderful, wonderful,” Carol England said. “Yup, I had no questions or qualms about coming, would’ve been here in the middle of the storm.”
England has been a member of the church for over 20 years. She said she didn’t expect so many people to show up and added that the service brought her a special feeling during this COVID-19 outbreak.
“Oh yes, yes brought a peace, a sense of peace in this time of turmoil,” England said.
Part of England’s sense of normalcy probably rested in the fact that there were all the regular aspects of going to church, like communion which was served in little packages that had the body of Christ (the wafer) and juice.
In addition, there was music performed by the church band and every time the preacher asked for an ‘amen’ or people wanted to say amen they could, by honking their horns.
Standing a few feet above the parking lot, on a metal scaffolding pulpit delivering the sermon, was the church’s lead pastor Reverend Ryan Whitlow.
“It’s such a blessing, we’ve been missing each other, as everyone is missing each other, their friends and their family,” Whitlow said. “We wanted to be able to offer hope to people in the midst of this situation and so it was just awesome to do this, still maintained social distancing and just lift up the name of Jesus and give hope.”
Whitlow said the congregation was receptive to a much different way of holding the service than they were accustomed. He added that there is one message that he wants those watching from home or the parking lot to impart.
“I just want to tell everyone Happy Resurrection Sunday, that we can have hope in Jesus’ name because of what he’s done for us, dying on the cross and rising again,” Whitlow said. “Don’t get discouraged, trust in him, this is going to pass and we better days are ahead.