MINERAL RIDGE - Churches throughout the Valley marked Easter this weekend in their own special ways.
Adults and children could be seen throughout the area in their brightly colored Easter clothes walking in and out of their churches.
At the First Presbyterian Church of Mineral Ridge, in addition to two indoor services and a breakfast, there was a special outdoor service Sunday in front of the church.
Tribune Chronicle photos / Bob Coupland
Dominic Billock, 3, gets a boost from his grandfather, Jim Billock, in seeing one of the 12 white doves released Easter morning outside the First Presbyterian Church in Mineral Ridge. A special short service was held outside during the release.
Pastor Jamie Milton led the congregation in prayer as 12 white doves were released.
''Doves are a symbol of love and peace. Today we release these doves to show our love,'' Milton said.
Helping to release the doves from their white baskets were church members Olivia Meyers, 6, and Mason Meyers, 3, and Riley Wade, 5.
Church member Carol Rummell said the doves were brought from Doves of Love in Pennsylvania.
''We released doves two years ago and before that five years ago. We decided to hold this again ... Two doves symbolize the Holy Spirit and one dove represents Jesus' Resurrection,'' she said.
Also this Easter weekend, St. Elizabeth Ann Seton parish at SS. Cyril and Methodius church site held its annual blessing of the Easter food. The church aisleway was filled with Easter baskets with the aroma of bread, meats and cookies.
Father James Walker walked down the aisle blessing each basket.
''Today we pray for God's blessing on our food and for our families,'' he said.
Walker said Easter is a time to be with families and loved ones and also to remember those who are deceased.
"We are happy to ask God's blessings on ourselves and on our food. At Easter we have people who prepare the food and will be able to enjoy the company of families and friends as we celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ," Walker said.
Walker said after smelling all the food-filled baskets he was getting quite hungry.
Julana Bowman of Lordstown helped solve that by giving Walker samples from her basket.