Ebenezer Missionary Baptist prepares for ‘The Messiah’

Published 9:46 pm Monday, December 22, 2014

Ebenezer Missionary Baptist Church is gearing up for a performance of George Fredrick Handel’s “The Messiah.”

Until recently, every year on Dec. 23 at 8 p.m., the church’s music department performed the piece to celebrate the birth of Jesus. The church decided last year to put on “The Messiah” every two years.

“This is a very important tradition of our church,” said Alline C. Reese, a participant in the performance and wife of pastor Fredrick D. Reese. “We always have it on the 23rd at 8 p.m., and it’ always a time that we enjoy reminiscing and thinking about Jesus’ birth and that just brings it up to par for us.”

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With there being no performance last year, Reese said she is looking forward to it and is hoping for a great turnout.

“Whoever will be there, we’re going to do our best to give them a performance that they will really enjoy and can take home with them and remember for years to come,” she said.

“The Messiah” performers are made up of church members and non-members. Reese said that it makes it special to have a mixture of people perform.

“It’s mostly the people who attend the church, but we have others that sing with us, too,” Reese said. “We have some from a lot of other churches that will come in and sing with us. They might not be a member of Ebenezer, but we always welcome them too.”

Reese said the performance is special to the church, and she hopes it will bring the audience closer to the Lord.

“It’s special because it involves so many people and so many look forward to it,” Reese said. “I would like for people to get closer to the Lord. Sometimes we come to ‘The Messiah’ with different things in mind, but it’s really all about Jesus and his birth and Resurrection.”

Not only is the concert special to Reese, it’s also a family event. Reese, her husband, their two daughters and two sons are all performing in “The Messiah.”

“It just feels good to know that the Lord has blessed us in this area to be able to do this,” Reese said. “It’s just wonderful to be able to do this, and we enjoy it each year.”

“The Messiah” will be performed at Ebenezer Missionary Baptist Church on Tuesday, Dec. 23 at 8 p.m. The church is located at 1548 Dr. F. D. Reese St. in Selma.