While many families around Lubbock spent their Easter mornings relaxing, some climbed out of bed before the sun for a special sunrise service at Resthaven Cemetery. A picturesque tomb was the backdrop for the moving service that took those who attended back nearly 2,000 years. Back in 1993, Resthaven built a replica of that fateful tomb and they've been holding Easter sunrise services ever since.
Redina Franklin was one of those early risers that brought her family out to the service. She said her children look forward to seeing the tomb all year.
"It's a very special time for us because my kids love the tomb and the story and how Jesus isn't there anymore," Franklin said.
Classic hymns and scripture readings echoed through the cemetery starting at seven in the morning, just before the sun appeared on the horizon. Resthaven's General Manager Cary Grossi says this is their way of giving back to the community.
"It's uplifting. People keep saying it's a beautiful service and it's so uplifting for them… They have to remember sacrifice, Jesus died for us and we need to take that to heart," Grossi said.
Franklin thinks the sunrise service can be powerful for anyone, no matter what you may believe.
"The message is not religion specific and anyone that knows a little about Jesus was touched by the message today," Franklin said.
That very message is the reason Resthaven encourages people to wake up with the sun and celebrate the resurrection. Next year will be Resthaven's 20th Easter sunrise service. The cemetery also hosts a Memorial Day event to honor all those men and woman who have served.
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