South Londonderry: The First Baptist Church of South Londonderry will be joining with the Second Congregational Church of Londonderry for the Maundy Thursday Service on March 24 at 7 p.m. at the Second Congregational Church and the Good Friday Service on March 25 at 7 p.m. at the temporary meeting place of the First Baptist Church, which is the Londonderry Town Hall building at 139 Middletown Rd. The Easter Sunrise Service will be on March 27 at 6:30 a.m. at the building site of First Baptist Church at 62 Crescent St. with refreshments following the service at the Town Hall building. The Easter Worship Service will be on March 27 at 10 a.m. at the Londonderry Town Hall. For more information, call 802-856-7266, visit www.firstbaptistlondonderryvt.org or find the churches on Facebook.
Alstead, N.H.: Palm Sunday worship and Sunday School begins at 10:30 a.m., followed by coffee hour. Maundy Thursday's service is at 6 p.m. On Good Friday, the church will be open from noon until 3 p.m. for all who wish to stop in at any time for meditation. There will be a service at 6 p.m. There will be an Easter sunrise service at 6:15 a.m. on Millot Green followed by a light breakfast in the church Fellowship Room. All are welcome to attend the Easter Sunday service with Communion at 10:30 a.m.
Brattleboro: During the last week of the Lenten season, beginning on March 20, St. Michael's Episcopal Church celebrates Holy Week, a sacred time of the year for Christians when the events of Christ's passion and death are remembered. In revisiting the sacred stories, we hope not only to remember, but to experience the drama of these stories ourselves. St. Michael's is fully accessible. More information is available on the website or at the church office, 802-254-6048. All are welcome at any or all of these services. Palm Sunday, 8 and 10:15 a.m.; the 10:15 service begins with a procession, led by a real donkey and some spirited music, of the congregation and the blessing of the palms, commemorating the triumphal entry of Jesus into Jerusalem. The Palm Sunday services underline the contrast between the crowd's joyous greeting of Jesus and then their condemnation of him — the contrast between shouts of "Alleluia" and "Crucify him!" The congregation gathers on March 21 and 22 at 5:30 p.m. for a brief time of prayer and Eucharist. On March 23 at 7 p.m., Tenebrae, "The Service of Shadows," offers us a time to be prayerful and reflective together in the midst of the darkness that is part of the Lenten season. This is a quiet and contemplative service of scripture and poetry readings, cello music, Taize chants and singing. On Thursday, at 7 p.m., the service commemorates the Last Supper and focuses on Jesus washing the disciples' feet and instituting the sacrament of Holy Communion. The service ends in complete silence with the stripping of the altar, in recognition of Jesus' prayers in the Garden of Gethsemane and the despair and death to resurrection. Good Friday, at 8 a.m. and 7 p.m., commemorates the Crucifixion of Jesus. During this solemn service, we mourn for the death of Jesus and for our own sins. During the Great Vigil of Easter, March 26, at 7 p.m., we light the new fire of Easter and move from darkness to light telling the ancient stories. We proclaim the Easter message: Christ is Risen. Bring your bells and other musical instruments. Easter Sunday at 8 and 10:15 a.m., is the most important day of celebration in the Christian Year when we celebrate how Christ overcame death to rise to new life, offering his redemption and love to all. The 10:15 service includes festival music of Easter.
Brattleboro: All are welcome at Centre Congregational Church, 193 Main St., an Open and Affirming Congregational and a Just Peace Church. This Sunday, pastor, Reverend Bert W. Marshall will lead a Parade of Palms beginning at 9:40 a.m. in Pliny Park, across the street from the church, and processing the short distance to the church. This parade is in memory of the entry of Jesus into Jerusalem after he had been fasting and praying in the desert. At the church, beginning at 10 a.m., Reverend Marshall will offer a meditation called "Stoned." Scripture references are Isaiah 50:4-9a and Luke 19:28-40. The Adult Class will meet from 9 to 9:50 a.m. in the church library, now reading "Rumi: The Life and Work of the Great Sufi Poet," by Annemarie Schimmel. Sunday school for children begins at 9 a.m. followed by Faith in Action for the school aged crowd. Child care for younger children is provided from 9 through the church service. Ongoing church activities include the Prayer Shawl Ministry at 4:40 on Mondays, Quilting Ministry at 1:30 on Thursdays at the home of Gisela Robeck, and Women's Spirit at 4:40 on Thursdays. Church Office Hours are 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. For information call, 802-254-4730 or see www.centrechurchvt.org.
Vernon: The Vernon Advent Christian Church, 4554 Ft. Bridgman Rd., will be hosting a joint Good Friday service on March 25 7 p.m. Other churches involved are Vernon Union Church (Pastor Terry Robinson), Mountain View 7th Day Adventist Church (Pastor Art Miller), and the Vernon Hall Chapel (Chaplain Rick Morton). We will celebrate the Lord's Supper together and a special love offering will be received to assist someone in the community. The Vernon Advent Christian Church will also celebrate the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ with a SONrise service on March 27, at 6 a.m., followed by breakfast. Our regular morning worship at 10:30 a.m. will feature numerous special music offerings of worship to the risen Lord. Pastors Bruce Burks and Derek Irvine invite all to attend and worship with us. The church building is handicapped accessible.
Brattleboro: Baha'is around the world will be ending their 19 Day Fast today. During the Fast, which began on March 1, Baha'is between the ages of 15 and 70 abstain from food and drink from sunup to sundown. Travelers, nursing mothers, laborers, pregnant women and the sick are exempt from fasting. The Baha'i New Year, or Festival of Naw Ruz, follows the ending of the Fast. Naw Ruz is one of nine Holy Days in the Baha'i calendar which was instituted by the Bab, the Prophet forerunner of the Baha'i Faith. The calendar consists of 19 months of 19 days with four to five days between the last two months of the calendar set aside for special acts of charity, gift-giving and hospitality. March 20 will mark the beginning of the 173rd year of the Baha'i era which dates from May 23, 1844, when the Bab declared His Mission as the pivotal point or "gate" between the Revelation of Muhammed and the coming of Baha'u'llah, Prophet-Founder of the Baha'i Faith. Locally, Baha'is and their guests will gather for a celebration of the coming new year on Sunday afternoon, March 20. For more information about the Baha'i Faith and to join us for our Naw Ruz celebration, call 802-254-2115 or visit www.bahai.us.
Guilford: On Friday, March 25, the community will gather at Guilford Community Church, UCC, at noon in word, prayer, and song to mark Good Friday, the day on which Jesus was crucified. Seven local pastors will each preach on one of Jesus' last words from the cross, and each of the seven segments will include special music, readings and hymns. A community-massed choir will sing several numbers under the direction of Peter Amidon, with Molly Melloan accompanying on the organ. Worshipers are welcome to come and go during planned intervals. At noon, Rev. Susanna Griefen, of the Dummerston Community Church, will present "Father, Forgive Them: For They Know Not What They Do." At 12:25 p.m., Rev. Cheryl Meachen, of First Methodist Church, will present "Today You Will Be With Me In Paradise." At 12:50 p.m., The Rev. Susie Webster-Toleno, of the Congregational Church of Westminster West, will present "Woman, Behold Your Son ... Behold Your Mother!" Jeff Hiam, congregant at St. Michael's Episcopal Church, "Today You Will Be With Me In Paradise." At 1:15 p.m., The Rev. Susie Webster-Toleno, Congregational Church of Westminster West, will present "My God, My God, Why Hast Thou Forsaken Me?" followed by "I Thirst" by The Rev. Bert Marshall, Centre congregational Church, UCC. At 2:05 p.m., The Rev. Mary Lindquist, St. Michael's Episcopal Church, presents "It Is Finished?" And the The Rev. Peggy Yingst, Trinity Lutheran Church, will finish at 2:30 p.m. with "Father, Into Thy Hands I Commit My Spirit."