The annual Christmas worship service at the Walnut Grove Methodist Episcopal Church fills to capacity. It is standing room only at this historic church in Riceville, Tennessee. It is a quiet contemplative service that reflects the worship style of the pre-civil war period.
For 2013, the nationally recognized flutist Alexandria Crabtree will be performing several solos during the Christmas service. She has played at the Lincoln Memorial, Arlington National Cemetery and at worship events and community events in several states. The melodious strains of the flute add to the dignified celebration of the Hanging of the Greens at the church.
The congregation of Walnut Grove Methodist Episcopal Church South was organized in 1837 and the building was erected in 1855. The dissolution of the congregation left no one to care for the building. By the time Erbin and Ruth Baumgartner entered the picture, the building was in a state of disrepair. The building was relocated to their nearby property in 1989. Restoration of the structure took over a decade.
This year, the Christmas service will be held on December 19, 2013 at 7:00 pm. As the building is historic, there is no heat. Attendees should plan to dress for the weather. It is a packed house. Attendees are suggested to arrive 45 minutes early to get a seat.
Additional information about the church and Christmas service is available at the link above.