Pendleton-area churches to unite for service

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PENDLETON — Seven local churches will gather Sunday for an evening of musical worship and prayer.

The annual Community Night of Worship is scheduled for 6:30 to 8 p.m. Sunday at Pendleton Elementary School.

“It’s twofold. One, it’s a night for all churches to gather under the banner of Jesus to offer our praises to God. Two, it’s an example to show the community that we all work together. We’re not competing,” said Derek Bishop, an associate minister at Fall Creek Christian Church. “The very last thing Jesus prays in John 17 before he goes to the cross is that we need to be unified, so we’re taking that to heart.”

The churches coming together to put on the event this year include Brightpoint, Catalyst, Fall Creek Christian, Ovid Community, Pendleton Christian, Pendleton Community Church of God and Pendleton First United Methodist.

The event is open to the public and is free of charge.

“The cool thing about it all is that there’s seven churches involved. That’s very unique. We all work together, and it’s all been built up based out of our relationships with each other,” Bishop said. “We all support one another; we support each other’s churches. When somebody has a good thing going on we want to support that, and when something bad is going on we pray for each other.”

The night will consist of at least 15 songs played by a band made up of members from all seven churches.

“The main point of the night is the musical worship time where we sing our praises to God,” Bishop said.

Along with the singing, time will be taken in the middle of the night to pray over all the teachers and school administrators present at the event, along with all the people grieving or going through hardships.

“We take some time to pray over them,” Bishop said. “That’s a neat moment.”

On top of donations from each church, the group raised $5,400 from the community to help put on the event.

This is the eighth year for the Community Night of Worship event, which has grown year over year.

It started with a few churches and about 70 people; last year, 430 people attended. This time around, Bishop expects that number to exceed 500.

“It’s a night to show that we are unified under Christ. It doesn’t matter whether you’re Baptist, Methodist or another denomination of the church. We all believe in the same Jesus,” Bishop said. “He prayed for all believers, and we believe the bigger we make Jesus, the smaller our differences will become.”