Musical productions highlight Holy Week

Activities to get under way with Palm Sunday events

Music traditionally plays a major role in Holy Week worship services in many Topeka-area churches, and such will be the case again this year.


Among congregations planning special musical offerings is Westminster Presbyterian Church, 1275 S.W. Boswell.

Westminster’s director of music, Brad Stipcak, said selections from the cantata “At the Ninth Hour: A Lent and Easter Musical Journey” have been chosen for the Palm Sunday service at 10:25 a.m. April 9; the Maundy Thursday service at 7 p.m. April 13; and Easter Sunday service at 10:25 a.m. April 16.

Westminster’s Easter communion service also will include the long-standing tradition of the singing of “The Hallelujah Chorus” from Handel’s oratorio “The Messiah.”

Among other Holy Week events this week:

New Mount Zion Missionary Baptist Church, 2801 S.E. Indiana Ave., will have a Holy Week revival at 7 p.m. Tuesday, April 11, Wednesday, April 12, and Thursday, April 13.

Guest speakers will be the Rev. Arsenial Runion on Tuesday night; Bishop Samuel Abbott on Wednesday night; and the Rev. T.D. Hicks on Thursday night.

The revival theme is “Paid in Full.”

Victory City Church, 2622 S.E. 6th, will present the Easter drama “The Road to Calvary 2017” at 4 and 7 p.m. Saturday, April 8; and 4 and 7 p.m. Sunday, April 9.

First Presbyterian Church, 817 S.W. Harrison, will debut the cantata titled “Psalm 51” during the 10:30 a.m. Psalm Sunday worship service on April 9. The new choral work was composed by Topekan Gordon McQuere with psalm paraphrase by the Rev. Neil Weatherhogg.

The cantata will feature the church’s chancel choir and soloists from First Presbyterian Church, and will be under the direction of Kevin Kellim, who is music director at the church.

A choral evensong for Palm Sunday service will take place at 4 p.m. Sunday, April 9, at Grace Episcopal Cathedral, 701 S.W. 8th. Following the 30-minute program, the cathedral choir will join with the Baker University Choir and a 14-piece chamber orchestra for Mozart’s “Vesperae Solennes de Confessore.”

The Flint Hills Messiah Chorus and Chamber Orchestra will perform George Frideric Handel’s “Messiah” at 2 p.m. Palm Sunday, April 9, at First United Methodist Church, 6th and Lincoln in downtown Wamego. Tickets may be obtained for $10 at the door or by calling Claudia Leeds at (785) 456-2138.

First Lutheran Church, 1234 S.W. Fairlawn, will have Holy Week services including Maundy Thursday worship at 7 p.m. Thursday, April 13; Good Friday services at noon and 7 p.m. Friday, April 14; an Easter communion service at 5 p.m. Saturday, April 15; and Easter Sunday services at 8:15 a.m. and 11 a.m. Sunday, April 16, with Easter brunch and an Easter egg hunt at 9:30 a.m.

Valley Falls United Methodist Church, 410 Frazier St. in Valley Falls, will have its 62nd annual “living scene” Maundy Thursday service at 7 p.m. Thursday, April 13. A spaghetti dinner sponsored by the church’s youth group will precede the service from 5 to 6:30 p.m. A freewill offering will be received for the dinner.

New Mount Zion Missionary Baptist Church, 2801 S.E. Indiana Ave., will have an Easter egg hunt for children ages 1 to 12 complete with bounce houses, face-painting, balloon animals, food and beverages from 3 to 5 p.m. Saturday, April 15.

Easterfest, an event featuring a parade, Easter egg hunt and entertainment, will be held from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, April 15, in North Topeka.

The parade will begin at 10 a.m. in the 700 block of N. Kansas Avenue and proceed to the north, ending at Garfield Park, 1600 N.E. Quincy. The Easter egg hunt will follow the parade.

Christian bands will perform from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. A vendor market with food trucks will be open throughout the event, which is presented by the Capital City Christian Chamber of Commerce.

New Mount Zion Missionary Baptist Church, 2801 S.E. Indiana Ave., will have an Easter service at 8 a.m. Sunday, April 16, followed by an Easter program with the theme “Jesus Lives” from 9:30 to 10:45 a.m. Breakfast will follow the Easter program.

Bethel Baptist Church, 4011 N. Kansas Ave, will have a special Easter service at 10:30 a.m. Sunday, April 16. For more information, call (785) 286-0494.