Kingwood hosts 67th Annual Sunrise Service

Kingwood Center Gardens

Photo: Getty Images

Kingwood hosts 67th Annual Sunrise Service

MANSFIELD — Kingwood Center Gardens will host the annual Easter Sunrise Service, Sunday, April 9 at 7 a.m. in back of the Gatehouse which serves as the main entrance, off Trimble Road.

This is the second year the service has been held in that area, and it is the sixth location of the service in the Garden’s area since its inception 69 years ago. 

St. Mark’s Lutheran sponsored the event each year until last year, when a group of organizers known at “Mansfield is Godsfield” took responsibility for the service. 

Glory Way will again sing several songs, as they have for more than a dozen years, and Pastor Paul Lintern of Oakland Lutheran and Southside Christian churches will bring the messages. Other leaders in the service include Pastor Dave Rentzel of Abundant Life, Dr. Wanda Sprinkle of Kingdom Grace Fellowship, Pastor Mark Pierce of Church Requel, and the Rev. El Akuchie of Fusion Church in Lexington and the Richland Prayer Network.

Susan Hitchman Evans will accompany group singing; Metronome Music is donating use of an electronic piano.

“The story of the Resurrection takes place in a garden, and so Kingwood is an ideal location for the ‘discovery’ of an empty tomb,” says Lintern, who has been involved in the service for more than 20 years.

In the event of inclement weather, the service will be inside the building there, but Lintern warns that the weather will have to really warrant it.

“The crowd that comes each year, those who have made this such a tradition, is a hearty bunch. They like the early time, you know, ‘Jesus rose form the dead, let’s get out of bed.’ 

“And, I really think they like to brag to family and later church goers about the weather they endured to welcome the Day of Resurrection. “ 

Only twice in the last 25 years has the service been sent inside, and the twice since its inception has the service been cancelled — once during a remodeling time, when it was moved to the brickyard downtown, and once during COVID.

The offering receive offsets costs of the service and will support the creating of the Jericho Wall of Remembrance and Recovery in the Imagination District of Mansfield, for families of the casualties of addiction.