Flu bug can#039;t kill Mt. Pleasant Christmas

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, December 22, 1999

Almost the entire congregation at Mount Pleasant Baptist Church, on County Road 45 in the Friendship Community, was stricken with flu-like symtoms recently which threatened to spoil its plans for a Christmas celebration. However, the congregation will hold its annual Christmas contada on Dec 26.

Photo by Derek Brown

When the flu bug attacks a person during the holiday season, it can have a way of dampening the Christmas spirit. For the congregation of Mount Pleasant Baptist Church, in the Friendship community, the flu attacked almost everyone, but the Christmas spirit would not die.

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Interim pastor Allen Stephenson said the Church's plans for a Christmas celebration were all but spoiled when almost every family in the church was affected by flu-like symptoms, but, he said spirit of the small congregation was not to be put down.

"Our Women's Missionary Union had planned a party for Saturday, Dec. 18, for underprivileged children from our area," Stephenson said. "And our (WMU) director Frances Lowery, and assistant director Susan Lowery had to literally drag themselves out of bed to make sure the party happened as planned. We couldn't let the children down."

Stephenson said the party was originally planned to provide gifts for 12 children. That number, he said, was doubled because of the generosity of the congregation.

"We wound up with about 24 children we provided gifts for at the party," Stephenson said. "The generosity of our folks never ceases to amaze me."

The next night, the congregation planned to enjoy its annual Christmas contata, however, the flu bug wasn't giving up. Music Director Vann Mote said that more than half of the church choir (17 of 32 members) were unable to attend due to illness, so plans were made to postpone the cantata until Sunday, Dec. 26.

Mote said the cantata, which is called

I have seen the light, is a 55 minute muscial celebrating the birth of Jesus. While Mote, his wife Melissa and 18-month-old son Evan have all been stricken with the flu-like virus, he says everyone should be well enough to attend next Sunday.

Stephenson said the congregation hopes that by postponing the cantata more people from the area will come out to enjoy the musical special. He said the public is invited to attend.

"By sharing this music, and by sharing with these children in spite of all the illnesses we've had, it has allowed us to remember the true meaning of Christmas and has made this a very special year," he said.