TUPELO, Miss. (WTVA) -- From solemn remembrance to elaborate production: Christians recognize Good Friday in different ways.
At Hope Church in Tupelo, it's done by telling the story of Jesus Christ's final moments, because biblically, these next few days mark the most significant events in his life.
"We want to demonstrate and celebrate the risen Christ. That's our real goal tonight, to share the gospel through the resurrection story," Hope Church Pastor Scooter Noland said.
Behind the scenes, a cast of more than one hundred actors and actresses -- plus a few animals -- bring Jesus' final days to the stage.
"It's been about twelve weeks of intense production," Noland said. "What we're hoping to do tonight is show in visual form those last few hours of Christ, and the power of the Christian life is really not in his death, but his resurrection."
Those visual reminders can also be subtle in nature. Take Calvary Baptist Church's Tenenbaum service, highlighting Jesus' final words before dying on the cross, and signifying those seven statements with candles, extinguished one at a time.
"The Easter story really is the power of the life of a Christian. The last few hours of the life of Christ set him apart from every other religion, and so, his death, burial and resurrection gives us hope," Noland said. "It also gives us power in our everyday living for him. And so, it's very important not only to remember the story, but to tell the story over and over."
How well-received is that message?
Hundreds of people turned out to both churches Friday night, with Hope Church having around 700 people in attendance, far more than they expected.
But they say in this day and age, they're encouraged by that.
Hope Church will present another Easter story production Saturday night at 7 p.m.