Midtown: Community

Checking out all God’s creatures at Richland Creek Community Church

On most Sundays, the kids attending children’s church at Richland Creek Community Church in Wake Forest listen to a message, sing songs and pray. But for the next few Sundays, they’ll have some special visitors.

They won’t be guest speakers or church members, but a variety of animals for the children to check out. Dan Breeding, also known as “Dan the Animal Man,” will be presenting Christian-based animals shows for the children at 9 and 10:15 a.m. on Aug. 26, Sept. 2 and Sept. 9.

“He will have all kinds of exotic animals with him. We never exactly what animals he is going to bring with him until he pulls up in his truck on Sunday morning,” said Ben Niemann, communications director Richland Creek Community Church. “He will tie creationism and scripture into the presentation by showing how certain features of the animals couldn’t have happened through evolution.”

Although children’s church is targeted for elementary school children, Niemann said preschool and middle school students can attend the animal shows as well.

Breeding began working with animals when he was 13 and has an impressive resume, including training and filming chimpanzees. He also has worked with African elephants, Bengal tigers and pygmy hippopotamuses. He has trained animals for commercials and television shows, including “Second Noah” and “Animal Planet.” Breeding has also appeared on many celebrity shows, including “The Late Show with David Letterman” and “Live with Regis and Kelly.” One of the highlights of his career was being invited to the White House by George W. Bush. Breeding lives in Raleigh and is a member of Richland Creek Community Church.

Breeding said that his favorite part of performing is seeing the excitement on the kids’ and even adults’ faces.

“You can read books about animals and watch the animals on television until you are blue in the face, but it really leaves a lasting impression when someone gets to see, smell and touch the animal,” Breeding said. “When you give glory to God who created the magic for the person in the audience, I can’t even describe what a great feeling it is.”

For more information on Richland Creek Community Church, visit www.richlandcreek.com or call 919-556-9292. To learn more about “Dan the Animal Man,” visit www.wildanimalencounters.com or www.creaturesofcreation.org.

Community United Church of Christ

Rev. Collins Kilburn, who was the pastor of Community United Church of Christ from 1960 to 1969, will preach at the 10:30 a.m. service, Sunday, Aug. 19, at the church, 814 Dixie Trail, Raleigh. Three former pastors will also be preach this fall in preparation for a Revisioning and Renewal retreat. For more information, visit www.communityucc.org or call 919-787-6422.

Members of Community United Church of Christ recently participated in two service projects for the Interfaith Food Shuttle. Thirteen members filled 208 bags with onions, carrots, oranges and corn at the Interfaith Food Shuttle warehouse. The volunteers then delivered the bags of groceries to Capital Towers in Raleigh and visited with residents.

Ten members of the congregation also volunteered at the Interfaith Food Shuttle Teaching Farm, which was established four years ago to provide food for the community and teach residents farming skills. In addition to growing vegetables, the farm has many animals that help provide food, such as chickens, catfish and roosters. The volunteers pulled weeds and dead plants from the rows and harvested garlic.

Hope Lutheran golf tournament

Hope Lutheran Church in Wake Forest is having its 8th annual golf tournament at 2 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 26, at Heritage Golf Course, 1250 Heritage Club Ave., Wake Forest. The tournament will have two flights and is open to all levels of golfers, including junior golfers. The entry fee is $75 and includes green fees, cart and prizes. Corporate sponsorships are also available from $100 to $500. All proceeds from the tournament will benefit the church’s upcoming 10-day mission trip to Guatemala. For more information or to register, call 919-554-8109 or visit www.hopelutheranwf.com.

Jazz vespers service

Western Boulevard Presbyterian Church is holding a Jazz Vespers service at 5 p.m., Sunday, Aug. 26, in the lower level of the fellowship hall at the church, 4900 Kaplan Road, Raleigh. The service will include prayer, poetry, ambient art and live jazz. The Jazz Vespers service is part of @The Table, a contemporary service held each Sunday. For more information, call 919-851-4713 or visit wbpresbyterian.com/worshipmusic/sunday-worship/the-table.

Do you have some faith news to share? Send it to correspondent Jennifer Gregory at nrnews@newsobserver.com.