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NCC Sponsors Christmas Eve 2004 Broadcast from Atlanta Episcopal Cathedral

December 17, 2004, ATLANTA, Ga. -- The National Council of Churches USA is sponsoring a special Christmas Eve church service from the Episcopal Cathedral of St. Philip in Atlanta that will be broadcast on ABC television network. The program is scheduled to air at 1:30 a.m. EST Dec. 25 on the more than 220 ABC-TV affiliates across the country. Viewers should check local listings for broadcast times in their area.

The annual broadcast from the Atlanta Cathedral has been carried live on ABC-affiliate WSB-TV for more than three decades and is produced by the Episcopal Media Center under the direction of the Rev. Canon Louis C. Schueddig.

Leading the service will be the Bishop J. Neil Alexander of the Episcopal Diocese of Atlanta, who will preach a sermon titled “How Far Is It to Bethlehem?” The cathedral’s dean, the Very Rev. Samuel G. Candler, will officiate for the celebration of Holy Communion.

Accompanied by the Peachtree Brass, the Cathedral Choir will perform classical Christmas anthems, including works by Willan, Dirksen, Hassler, Carter, Davis and Sowerby. Hymns will include a variety of traditional Christmas carols. Bruce Neswick, the Cathedral’s canon musician, will direct the evening’s music.

The Episcopal Media Center is an independent nonprofit organization in Atlanta that produces broadcast programming for radio and television and distributes video and audio resources for Christian education in congregations and homes. The National Council of Churches USA, which has 36 Christian denominations in 140,000 churches nationwide, works through its Communication Commission to sponsor and produce documentaries and seasonal liturgical programs for broadcast on ABC, NBC and CBS network affiliates. Currently, “Hunger No More,” a TV documentary that takes an unflinching look at the persistent problem of hunger in the 21st century and offers solutions is airing on ABC-TV affiliates.

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