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Connellsville Area Ministerial Association to host Vesper service for senior class

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Sunday, May 26, 2013, 12:33 p.m.

The Connellsville Area Ministerial Association will host the baccalaureate for graduating seniors of Connellsville Area High School at 7:30 p.m. June 5 in Church of God, 126 Breakneck Ave.

The church is next to the high school.

The Rev. Suzanne Zampella of Connellsville Presbyterian Church said last year that the Connellsville Area School Board asked the ministerial association to take over the worship service.

“And we were happy to oblige,” said Zampella. “The pastors in Connellsville know how important it is for our young men and women who are entering the world — whether college, tech school or job — to enter that world grounded in their identity as God's children. The world will question their importance, their value and their competency. We know they are valued, loved and empowered as children of the King. We welcome this chance to celebrate with them and offer them a blessing as they move on in life.”

Zampella is secretary of the ministerial association.

This year, the baccalaureate messages will be delivered by the Rev. Raymond Hill of Otterbein United Methodist Church and Zampella.

“What Are You Looking For?” is the title of Hill's presentation. Zampella will speak on “Staying Connected.”

Other local pastors will participate in the service.

The Rev. Nelson D. Confer is pastor of the Church of God.

“Pastor Confer and the church board graciously agreed to allow CAMA to hold vespers at the Church of God so that we could be near the school and easy to find. They will even provide great refreshments,” said Zampella.

Confer invites the community to the service.

“I believe we should all support our seniors. This is a community event, and CAMA is very pleased to be able to host it,” he said.

The program begins with a choral processional, alma mater and “America” presented by the high school's combined choirs. The CAHS Chamber Ensemble will sing “The Star-Spangled Banner.” Henry L. Molinaro is director of the vocal groups.

The welcome and invocation will be given by the Rev. Don Smith of World Christian Outreach Ministries, who is the president of the ministerial association. Guest conductor and CAHS alumnus Jonathan Eutsey will direct the singing of “Like an Eagle.” He is a substitute teacher in the Connellsville Area School District and was the assistant music director for the 2013 CAHS musical, “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dream Coat.”

“Vesper service to me is part of our country's rich spiritual heritage, a reminder not just for the graduates but for everyone of God's personal involvement in our lives from conception, childhood and through adulthood. Vesper service is a great way to remind the graduates as one chapter of their lives comes to an end, God is there to help them with the writing of the next chapter of their lives,” said the Rev. Matt Goldsberry of Calvary Assembly of God Church, who's vice president of the ministerial association.

Tyler Shultz, senior class president, will offer graduation remarks to his classmates. The benediction will be given by Confer followed by the playing of “Trumpet Voluntary” by alumnus Levi Graft.

Graduates and attendees are invited to stay for refreshments.

Nancy Henry is a freelance writer.

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