Spiritual notes

Commemoration

St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, 806 13th St., Altoona, will commemorate and remember the 400th anniversary of the arrival of the first enslaved Africans to the Americas during a

3 p.m. service on Sunday. The church bells will toll and a service of repentance and reconciliation will be held.

In August of 1619, an English ship brought enslaved Africans from the shores of West Africa to the English colony of Virginia. The National Park Service has invited churches to commemorate the event and to remember those who came as enslaved and who would one day proclaim liberty. The public is invited to attend and pray for a new future for everyone.

Prayer for schools

The Blair County Pastors Network will be devoting its Sunday prayer time to pray for schools in the area.

The pastors are inviting interested members from all churches to attend the gathering which will be held from 6:30 to 7 a.m. Sunday, at the Mount Lion on the campus of Altoona Area School District. No registration is required.

Prayers will be said for students, teachers, staff and the administration.

The session will begin with a large group prayer and then it will be broken up into small group led by area pastors to pray for the 12 area schools in Blair County.

Festivals

The following churches have scheduled back-to-school and summer festivals:

– The third Annual Summer Fun Fest will be held from noon to 5 p.m. Saturday in the parking lot at Altoona Alliance Church.

The community event includes a children’s area that will feature inflatables, a climbing wall, games, face painting and a craft corner.

Motorcycle rides for all ages will be offered by the Curve Gospel Riders.

Lunch is free for children ages 12 and younger. Adult meals are available for $4 and include a meatball or sausage sandwich, chips and a bottle of water.

“Steve that DJ Guy” will sponsor a photo booth and nonprofit organizations as well as vendors will have information and merchandise available at booths throughout the area.

The area will include a prayer tent for people requesting prayer.

Entertainment will include open mic on stage and “Minute to Win It” games. Prizes will be available.

– Fairview Untied Methodist Church, 2214 Fifth Street, Altoona, will host its annual Block Party from noon to 2 p.m. Sunday.

The event includes free hotdogs, drinks, snacks, cookies and games for kids. A fire

truck and police officers will be there also. Back-to-School baskets and backpacks will be given away.

– A free Back-To-School Family Fun Festival will be held from 1 to 4 p.m. Saturday at Ward Avenue Presbyterian Church.

There will be live music from Gathering Waters, an Irish Folk band from Pittsburgh, games for all ages, a visit from Miss Choo, hot dogs, corn and cotton candy.

The church is located on the corner of Coleridge and Ward avenues in Altoona.

For more information, contact the church office at 942-6859 or call the Rev. Brian Cjoi at 918-851-6659.

– The Oasis of Love Church of Huntingdon will hold a festival from 4 to 7 p.m. Saturday that includes food, games and giveaways for everyone.

In addition, Winona Avenue, with special guests Jeff Brown and Natalie Esarey, will present entertainment. Winona Avenue, from Indianapolis, Indiana, was formerly known as “Blank Pages.”

The Oasis of Love Church is at 10991 Station Road, across from the Southside Elementary School. For more information, email oasisoflovehuntingdon@gmail.com or call 627-3819.

Greek festival

The 14th annual Greek Festival will be held from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday at Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church, 1433 13th Ave., at the corner of 13th and 15th streets.

The outdoor festival will be held rain or shine and features Greek food and music. Freshly grilled specialties such as lamb and chicken skewers and gyros as well as other savory foods and Greek pastries will be for sale and can be packaged for take-out.

A live Greek band will be playing all day and Greek dance performances in traditional costume are scheduled for 1, 3 and 5 p.m.

Children’s activities include a bounce house and there will be a craft and yard sale as well as church tours. Admission is free. For more information, call 943-0091.

In case of severe weather, the festival will be held from 12:30 to 5 p.m. Sunday with food and pastries only.

Indoor yard sale

Simpson-Temple United Parish, 2212 Sixth Ave., will hold an indoor yard sale from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sept. 6 and 7 in the social hall of the education building.

Deadline

Religious organizations are invited to submit upcoming events, special speakers and other items to be published free of charge in Spiritual Notes. Items can be emailed to religion@altoonamirror.com or call Holly at 946-7451. Items may also be submitted online through the Mirror’s virtual newsroom at vnr.altoonamirror.com.

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