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Mayor's Thanksgiving service to unite faithful
In the pulpit
1116 ThomasSpeech
Hinesville Mayor Jim Thomas speaks during an event earlier this year. The Mayor’s Annual Community Service of Song, Prayer and Thanksgiving is set for Sunday, Nov. 23. - photo by Courier file photo
It is the season for thanksgiving and helping those in need. The Liberty County community serves as a good example of people reaching out to help those less fortunate.
Many agencies, churches and organizations throughout the county provide assistance year round, but charitable deeds increase even more during the holiday season.
In keeping with the spirit of giving, the Mayor’s Annual Community Service of Song, Prayer and Thanksgiving will be at 7 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 23, at the Main Post Chapel on Fort Stewart. The service, which was started several years ago by former Mayor Thomas Ratcliffe, is held annually during the Thanksgiving season.
“The purpose of the program is to bring the diverse faith community together for a Thanksgiving program for the community,” said Hinesville Mayor James Thomas. “The program is yet another example of the faith community coming together for the good of the county. We are striving to make the Thanksgiving program special as always. The mayor has allowed the United Ministerial Alliance (UMA) to take the lead with providing the clergy in support of the program,” said Dr. Dexter S. Andrews, president of the UMA.
“We have participation from a diverse group of clergy to include Hispanic, Korean and Samoan pastors. We are also especially proud of the union of the local clergy, UMA and the chaplains from Fort Stewart and their active involvement. We also thank the chaplains, especially Col. Gary Moore (the installation chaplain) for using the main chapel for this program,” Andrews said.
Various county officials and pastors are scheduled to speak during the program, while other officials and pastors will offer prayers and scriptures.  Col. Todd Buchs (garrison commander) will give words for the military. Words for the community will come from Thomas, and words for the nation will be given by Rep. Al Williams. Words of peace will be given by Dr. M. L. Jackson, pastor of Mt. Zion Ministries,  and words of thanksgiving will come from The Rev. Hermon Scott, pastor of Baconton Missionary Baptist Church.
An offering will be taken and presented to the city's Next Step Program.   The Next Step Program provides temporary rental assistance and supportive services to homeless individuals and families in an effort to help them enhance their ability to live independent of private and public forms of financial assistance and move toward a self-sufficient lifestyle.
“Everyone is asked to bring canned food items in support of the Manna House. The Manna House is operated under the leadership of Pastor Katrina Deason. On a daily basis, it feeds many families in the community,” Andrews said.
The mayor and UMA invite everyone to the annual service of thanksgiving. For information, call the mayor’s office at 876-3564 or Dexter Andrews at 492-6281.
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