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Sunrise service at the drive-in

Updated: Apr. 4, 2021 at 10:09 PM EDT
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ALEXANDRIA BAY, N.Y. (WWNY) - It started before dawn: cars filing in around 6 AM Sunday morning. It was 30 minutes prior to the service when headlights started illuminating the Bay Drive-In Theatre. And the focus was on one thing: Easter Sunday.

“For me, it’s the greatest day of the year. Resurrection Sunday, Easter, that’s what it’s about,” said Bob Bausum.

Bausum is a pastor at Alexandria Bay Baptist Church, one of a handful of local churches who helped put on Sunday’s service. At least 50 cars showed up with drivers honking the horn, signaling for an Amen.

Due to COVID-19, it’s the second-straight year the Easter sunrise service was held at the drive-in theatre. But the status of this year’s service was questionable.

“We actually didn’t start planning this until just a couple of weeks ago because we weren’t sure whether the snow pack was going to be off, because it’s early and all that,” said Bausum.

But mother nature cooperated. And while enjoying the comfort of their own cars, people listened to the church service on the radio.

Despite the early start time, plenty of people made it to the service, which was a touching gesture for another pastor.

“All the communities around here represented by just showing up here today. It’s heartwarming to see that folks really want to celebrate the resurrection,” said Gene Brown, Senior Pastor at 1,000 Islands Christian Church.

The sun rose at 6:39AM. By the end of the service, it could be seen above the trees. Pastor Gene Brown says that’s a symbol of resurrection.

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