Churchgoers celebrate Easter Sunday in person for the first time in two years

Churchgoers celebrate Easter Sunday in person for the first time in two years
The Salvation Army chapel had limited capacity to allow for social distancing on Easter Sunday. (Source: Olivia Russell/WKYT)

LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - Easter Sunday was a big celebration this year. Kentucky churches were ordered to close on Easter in 2020 because of the pandemic.

Malcolm and Victoria Daniels attended virtually last year. “We watched it on our laptops and it just didn’t feel the same,” Malcolm said.

The Salvation Army brought people together for a sunrise service at the Lexington Cemetery, Sunday School for the kids, and 11 AM worship in the chapel.

For Major Bill Garrett, it’s the perfect time to celebrate the resurrection as we also rise from the pandemic.

“It’s amazing to see on this Easter, this day where we celebrate the life of Christ, but we also see the city coming back to life. We feel like coming back to peoples’ eyes. We see people who are feeling safe to come out again with vaccinations available,” he said.

He said the chapel made some changes in order keep people healthy.

“We have masks when people come in, we have the sanitizer station set up, we have our chapel set up so that they are 6 feet of feet between benches. We ask that one family unit only sit in each row,” he explained.

The Daniels family was excited to see their friends, even if they were six feet apart.

“We want to give them a huge hug and we’re realizing that we can’t. It’s been kind of awkward and strange,” Malcolm said. “But just be able to be in one another’s presence has been heartwarming to all of us.”

“Not everybody’s been able to join us, but today I saw quite a few that we haven’t been able to see in a while so that’s really nice too,” Victoria added.

Even though the celebrations may be different online or in-person, they say the purpose will never change.

“It’s about Christ just raising from the dead,” Malcolm said. “He died for me and he died for you. Let’s celebrate that.”

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