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Worship service once again set for Yacht Club beach Easter morning

By Staff | Mar 29, 2013

The annual Easter Sunrise service will mark its 35th year on Sunday.

Hosted by A Life in Christ, the worship service will start at 7 a.m. on the Cape Coral Yacht Club Beach. The Rev. Leah Hileman will lead the ceremony.

The community service is open to the public and all are welcome.

Attendees may bring lawn chairs or blankets to sit on.

“It’s very different,” Lynn Schoendorf, one event organizer, said.

“You can actually watch the sun rise and you’re on the water. You can hear the waves if there’s waves and you can hear the birds if they’re birds,” she said.

Schoendorf estimated that 500 to 700 people attended last year.

“The weather is a big factor,” she said.

“If it’s super cold, we don’t get so many. It was very nice last year and that’s probably why we got a big attendance,” Schoendorf said.

This year’s service will feature special music and songs.

“Sometimes we have guest speakers – we always try to do one special thing,” she said, adding that the service is great outreach for the church.

The service is followed by a free continental breakfast at 8 a.m.

“All of the food is donated by Publix every year,” Schoendorf said.

A Life in Christ owns and operates the Cuppa Life Coffee Shop.

“We will brew our fair trade coffee and serve it,” she said.

During the service, offerings or donations will be asked for the public.

“All the proceeds that come in, we cover expenses and then we give away (the rest) to three different charities in the Cape,” Schoendorf said.

Last year, about $2,500 was split among the three recipients.

“It’s a good chunk of money that each one gets,” she said.

Two of the beneficiaries this year are the Lifeline Family Center and Cape Coral Special Populations. The third charity was not finalized Thursday.

“These are not the same year after year,” Schoendorf said. “It depends on who’s touching our heart at the moment and who needs something.”

Kathy Miller is the founder of the Lifeline Family Center.

“It’s greatly appreciated because we don’t take any government funding,” she said of the donation. “All of our support comes from the churches and individuals in the community.”

She said the center gives young mothers a second chance.

“They get an opportunity for education and a safe place to live in a Christian environment,” Miller said.

She expects that the donation will be used toward baby formula.

“That’s unbelievably expensive,” Miller said.

Sara Sansone, with Special Populations, was also pleased.

“I was pleasantly surprised that this church chose Special Populations to donate some of the offering monies to,” she said, adding that it will be put to good use.

“We have several individuals who need scholarships to continue to attend out programs here at Special Populations,” Sansone said. “It will definitely go towards that purpose.”

The Cuppa Life Coffee Shop is at 1404 Del Prado Blvd. S., Suite 164.

It is open Tuesday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. The coffee shop stays open later on the first and third Saturday of every month for open mic nights – they are open to the public.

A worship service is held at the shop on Sunday at 9:30 a.m.

For more information on the Easter service, call (239) 772-0800.