As Blackstone gave the sermon, the congregation sang hymnals throughout the service. At the end, the people took part in communion.
Those in attendance stopped to visit with friends as children took part in an Easter egg hunt at the park.
Lauren Costales, a 16-year member of the church, attended the service with her friends.
Costales, a Los Angeles resident, had her own interpretation of Blackstone’s message.
“It’s just one of those things that with an event out of tragedy comes happiness,” she said. “A lot of circumstances that are negative can turn to positive.”
Nina Person of Eagle Rock, said she was touched by the morning’s service.
“It brought me to tears,” Person said. “It’s sad that in order for a transplant to happen someone else has to die, but it’s wonderful that the family can accept each other because of the heart.”
Person also felt the sermon was relevant for the Easter holiday, she said.
“For Easter, I come to the church so I can celebrate that my Lord has risen,” Person said.
During the worship service, members of the church’s music ministry accompanied the congregation’s singing of the hymnals with music.
Los Angeles resident Leandro Quines, a six-year member of the First United Methodist Church, played the guitar.
“The message is related to the sacrifices Jesus made dying for our sins,” Quines said.
Thirteen-year-old Bethany Freitas of Yreka had only one word to describe Easter.
“Joy,” she said. “That’s pretty much it.”
Following the service, parishioners left the park for an Easter breakfast at the church.
Eagle Rock resident Dana Bautista, 17, came to worship on Sunday with his family.
“It was pretty touching, and it shows how intertwined our lives are,” Dana said. “Some people have to make sacrifices.”
ANI AMIRKHANIAN is a news assistant. She may be reached at (818) 637-3230 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.