BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — Song and sermon at sunrise is how worshipers at the Newman Center in Amherst began Easter Sunday.

Monsignor Patrick Keleher has been leading the mass for more than two decades.

“We’ve had it in sun, snow, clouds, rain. Today’s the greatest because it’s going to be clear,” he said.

Dozens gathered beneath the cross outside the center to celebrate the joy of Easter in the first light of morning.  The Easter holiday is typically a very popular and busy one for churches across Western New York and worldwide.

That’s why True Bethel Baptist Church in Buffalo held multiple services throughout the morning. It helped accommodate as many parishioners as possible.

“I feel wonderful. I wasn’t going to come to the first service. But I said let me get up and get here because I knew it would be crowded today,” said Tony Jordan, of Buffalo.

“It’s just wonderful to get up, get out, communicate with everyone and see young, old, kids. Just to see everyone come to worship together as a community, ” added Catanya Houston.

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Ali Touhey is an anchor and reporter who joined the News 4 team in 2023. View more of her work here.