Ministerial Alliance behind 9/19 Back to Church Sunday

staff reports
Munson Stadium in Denison will be the site of this weekend's "Back to Church" Sunday.

Sunday, area churches will be celebrating "Back-to-church Sunday." A community celebration will begin at 4:30 p.m. at Forest Park and a worship service will commence at 6 p.m. at Munson Stadium.

In a news release, organizers said there will be free inflatable games to play anf food will be available for purchase. The guest speaker for the event will be Denison High School athletic director and head football coach Brent Whitson and Dove Award nominee and musician Jaye Thomas.

“Whether you’ve been away, you recently moved to town, or you’re just curious, we wanted to provide a day for you to mark as a day to visit a church,” First Baptist Pastor Steve Suffron said.

The event is sponsored by the Denison Ministerial Alliance, a cross-denominational organization of local ministers, who began working toward this event last spring with about eight churches involved initially. About 20 congregations are currently involved in the event.

“It’s a great opportunity for the community and the church to come together as one, from every walk of life, every denomination, and every ethnicity,” Pastor James A. Wilson of Mount Zion Baptist Church said in the release.

The release also noted that during the pandemic, many churches have struggled to reach pre-pandemic attendance.

“People need to be connected with others as part of Christ’s body, the church, to be encouraged regularly, to grow together, and to spur one another on towards love and good deeds,” First Christian Church Pastor Drew Svendsen said. “ We are excited to see churches unite, regardless of denominational or cultural backgrounds, and to be the church in Denison that Christ has called us to be.”

But times like these are when being part of a church family can make the biggest difference, said Gene Amerson, pastor of New Beginnings Fellowship and president of the Denison Ministerial Alliance.

The impact of belonging to a church goes well beyond Sunday morning, said Todd Catteau, preaching minister at Park Avenue Church of Christ. “It’s where we find belonging. It’s where we serve our community. It’s where we are refreshed by good news. It’s where we experience the love of family.”

Part of the excitement has come from the curiosity around town stirred by more than four hundred ‘9.19.21’ yard signs distributed across various congregations, a billboard, and thousands of impressions on social media, directing people to the event website

More details about the event can be found at