Christmas Eve service draws thousands in Huntsville

HUNTSVILLE, Ala.-  Thousands of families packed into a football stadium for the Christmas Eve service.

Willowbrook Baptist Church drew a big crowd once again for its big night.

Moms, dads and kids were all bundled up and looking festive for what Genia Miller calls a tradition.

"It's everything," she stated. "It's what we do on Christmas Eve. It's our family tradition."

As the sun was setting at Milton Frank Stadium, families were packing the bleachers.

Willowbrook pastor Jeff Miller said it's still a service.

"It's a regular church service, he explained. "It's just bigger."

Just for one night, leaders from Willowbrook rented out the football field to welcome families for what's become one of the biggest Christmas Eve services in the city.

Singer Leann Canales said the attendance normally numbers in the thousands.

"Between 5,000 and 6,000 people tonight," she explained. "We're so excited, We just want to get the word out and spread some holiday cheer."

"It brings both of our campuses together for one worship," Miller added. "And it's a terrific outreach for the community, for people who don't normally go to church."

There were no pews on this evening. Instead, glow sticks and cell phones lit up the stands as families sing along.

"It's so humbling because you're so small in this huge sea of talent; God is so good to us," Canales said.

In what's become another tradition for Willowbrook, the service ended with a fireworks show.

Willowbrook was also offering baptisms at the stadium for any of the first timers.

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