Newport Beach churches celebrate Easter sunrise over sand – Orange County Register
Pastor Paul Capetz offered a message of hope to dozens of people who gathered on Easter Sunday for a sunrise service on the beach.
As dawn broke over the Balboa Peninsula, worshipers at two Newport Beach Methodist churches, Christ Church by the Sea and Newport Center United Methodist Church, prayed and sang songs, watching at the end of a man baptize in the ocean, and a little girl by the sea.
Collaborating on the service with Pastor Cindy Williams of Newport Center United, Capetz discussed the Easter story of the resurrection of Jesus Christ in her sermon.
“This is good news for all of us,” said Capetz, pastor of Christ Church by the Sea. “If we embrace the Christian faith, we can live our lives on Earth without fear of death. We know that God is more powerful than death, and God has determined that we will have an eternal destiny beyond death.
Capetz said he was happy for the return of the long tradition between the two churches. The service had been canceled for the past two years by the pandemic.
He said he hoped those in attendance found his message “fresh and new”. Although he knows many people have moved away from traditional Christian churches, Capetz said he hopes people will give congregations like his and Williams’s a new look.
“Although it’s traditional,” he said, they wouldn’t find it “old-fashioned” and “it has answers to questions people are asking today.”