VAN BUREN (KFSM) - More than 20 area churches are coming together Wednesday (Nov.19) to say thanks ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday next week. Thousands of people will be coming to the seventh annual Community Thanksgiving Service to honor those of service in our country.
Congregations, pastors, and leaders from all over Crawford County will come together to say thank you to those who have served our country. "It's part of our foundations history to come together and give thanks," said pastor Wes Hilliard pastor of one of the participating churches, Heritage United Methodist Church in Van Buren.
It's the seventh year they've held this tradition and Hilliard said he hopes it continues for a very long time. "We want to continue that tradition and give people in the community the opportunity to do that but on a larger scale," said Hilliard. " Not just one congregation and not just one family but really everyone comes together."
Hilliard said the service should be an inspiration to all those who come out. As well as serve as a reminder for some as to what's really important this holiday season. " We have children's community choir that starts off the service," according to Hilliard. "Then we have the community mass choir from folks of many of the churches throughout the area."
Once the choir has sung, the prayers have been whispered, and the pastors have spoken , the ceremony will end with a special speaker. This year's special speaker is Ret. Maj. Gen. Douglas Carver who served in the military for 38 years. He's someone who, pastor Hilliard said, is a powerful voice for not only faith but also family values in our nation.
"He is someone that is going to be a real blessing and also understands the importance of unity and bringing people together," said Hilliard.
The service starts at 7 p.m. at the Van Buren Fine Arts Center. Its free and open to all ages. Van Buren Mayor Bob Freeman will also be at the service welcoming all those who come out.