Sandusky church is there when you need a little help getting through Christmas

SANDUSKY Most people associate the holidays with joy and family togetherness. First C
Sandusky Register Staff
May 24, 2010

SANDUSKY

Most people associate the holidays with joy and family togetherness.

First Congregational United Church of Christ has a yearly service for those who have a different outlook on the season.

The service is designed for people who have trouble finding joy at this time of year, the Rev. Lenore Kure said.

"Lots of people are depressed during the holidays," she said.

The service takes place on the longest night of the year, Dec. 21, to help people who are experiencing darkness in their lives.

The Longest Night Service is open to all and is designed to assist those who are struggling, whether it be due to the death of a loved one, unemployment, divorce, financial stress or simply holiday burnout.

"We've found some people just like to come during the crazy holiday season to calm down," Kure said.

John and Deb Gerald, who are not members of the church, have attended the service every year.

"There's the hustle and bustle of things. It's nice to reflect on the true meaning of Christmas," John said.

First Congregational began this service in 1997 after a member of the congregation took her own life. Kure said the death made them realize some people feel neglected during the holiday season, and that inspired them to reach out to others.

Charles Scroggy, the church organist, said playing the comfort music brings a sense of peace during this busiest time of the year.