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Mt. Pisgah Lutheran Church Star

47th Annual Bethlehem Star Lighting Scheduled for December 2

The 47th annual Bethlehem Star Lighting is scheduled for Saturday, December 2, 2023, beginning at 6:45 p.m. at the stage near the Pavilion on the west side of Mt. Pisgah Lutheran Church. The first segment of the Star Lighting will highlight performances of the Alexander Central Jazz Band and a selection of Christmas music by the Alexander Central High School Madrigal Choir.

Following this segment of the night’s activities, attendees will be invited to move to the area under the Bethlehem Star. Members of Bethlehem Baptist Church will lead the program. Pastor Dean Chambers will read from the scripture about the Bethlehem Star. The program under the Bethlehem Star will include music by the Bethlehem Baptist Choir led by David Vannoy. The lighting of the Star by Pastor David Ross, a rendition of “O Beautiful Star of Bethlehem” by the choir after the star lighting, Christmas carols, and an ending prayer by Matt Austin, Director of Student Ministries at Bethlehem Baptist Church.

Other activities in this area will include a live nativity scene under the star manned by adults and children from Bethlehem Baptist Church. Live animals will also be provided. Boy Scout Troop 275 will serve hot chocolate and cookies. They will also light bonfires (weather-permitting) in the area near the Star.

The Bethlehem Fire Department, Junior Firemen, Alexander County Sheriff’s Department, and Law Enforcement Explorers will assist with traffic control and parking. Special parking for handicapped visitors will be coordinated by Law Enforcement Explorers. No craft fair will be operated this year.

The 2023 edition of Bethlehem Star carved wooden and engraved Christmas ornaments are available at the Mt. Pisgah Church office for a minimum donation of $25.00. Proceeds will be used to fund the operation of the Star, paid entertainment, and support community youth groups performing and assisting during the Star Lighting night.

Warren Hollar, Star Committee chairs said the community looks forward to lighting the star on December 2. Driving North in the dark on NC Highway 127 and seeing the shining Bethlehem Star provides a feeling of light and love that impact one’s spirit and hope.

Reverend David Ross, retiring pastor at Fellowship Advent Christian Church, will light the star for the 2023 Christmas season. Pastor Ross and his wife Shirley have served the Fellowship Church for the past 20 years. Ross has been in the ministry for 50 years with 18 years in a church in Maine, 12 years at the Denominational Offices in Charlotte beginning in 1991 and 20 years as pastor of his present church. Pastor Ross has been very active in the community with major leadership of the Christmas Drive-Thru hosted at his church. This Christmas drive thru, held the weekend following the Star Lighting is one of the signature events of the Bethlehem community Christmas season. The program involves several churches within the community and other volunteers to provide a clear reminder of the meaning of the Christmas season.

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