Churches celebrate Christmas Eve in-person

Churches celebrate Christmas Eve in person
Published: Dec. 26, 2021 at 12:52 AM EST
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PERRYSBURG, Ohio (WTVG) - Two years and dozens of strains into the pandemic, church Christmas services are getting back to normal here in Northwest Ohio.

It’s Christmas Eve at CedarCreek Church in Perrysburg. That means upward of 10,000 people showing up to celebrate the season. There’s a lot to be grateful for. Services are back in-person. Last year, capacity was limited and most attended online, a service CedarCreek still offers to keep people safe.

“To be able to celebrate both in person and online, the people that we care about and the reason for the season, it’s pretty special for us,” says pastor Ben Snyder.

This year, people are back, and masks are optional. The Roose sisters, Samantha and Abigail, kept theirs on.

“This year we just wanted to be in person with everyone. We just wanted to be here,” says Samantha.

“Personally, I made the decision to get vaccinated so I feel comfortable being out with a mask,” says Abigail.

Each church has its own way to keep people safe.

Sylvania Church gathered for its Christmas Eve service after the sun went down. With a congregation of about 20 people, spreading out and staying safe is easy. They stopped online streaming and returned to in-person before the holidays last year.

“Most of the people were crying out loud to have the service here and not through the internet, so I said, “Okay, we’ll see what happens,”” says pastor Daniel Guadarrama.

Sylvania Church has only had two positive cases throughout the pandemic. Both recovered and services have stayed in-person. Members wear masks when arriving, but can take them off at their seats.

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