WATER VALLEY – A year after services resumed at the Episcopal Church of the Nativity in Water Valley, the congregation has called a priest, the Rev. Chris Robinson. Father Robinson has served as an Episcopal priest in the Diocese of Mississippi for the past eight years and will begin weekly ministry in Water Valley on July 1. He currently serves as Episcopal Chaplain to Ole Miss and Assistant Rector at St. Peter’ Church in Oxford.
Father Robinson grew up in Mississippi, previously living in Yazoo City, Aberdeen and Jackson, and has served as Rector at the Episcopal Church in McComb.
“I am very excited about the possibility of engaging in creating a church community. Often times we find ourselves joining an established community that has a culture and system already in place,” Father Robinson told the Herald.
Father Robinson has been among the alternating clergy who have served at the Nativity during the last year as part of the parochial support provided by St. Peters Episcopal Church in Oxford. He said growth and organization during the last year has allowed the church to call a priest.
“We are seeing continued growth among the community in Water Valley,” Father Robinson explained, growth that helped the church take this next step.
Along with adding a regular clergy presence at Nativity, July also brings another major change – Sunday services. Starting on Sunday, July 1st, a celebration of the Holy Eucharist will be held every Sunday at 5 p.m.
The church had been shuttered for more than a decade before renewed interest, both from newcomers in Water Valley and former members, sparked a rebirth that got underway in early 2017 and ultimately led to services resuming several months later.
According to church records, services became intermittent starting in 2002. The church record shows a single service was held in 2003 and in 2004.