Another TA p.m’d to ask about religious services in Death Valley. Since this might be of general interest (people do often get a spiritual awakening while in such magnificent natural surroundings), I thought I’d give a more complete answer as well as reply specifically to the folks who asked me.
If anyone reading this is looking for an Easter sunrise service, it will be at the Sand Dunes at 6:00 a.m. tomorrow (Easter Sunday).
Regular services are at 10:45 a.m. Sundays in the Furnace Creek Ranch date palm grove (behind the fire station, north of the Post Office). You’ll see the seats out among the trees, looking toward the Panamint range as well as the palm trees and part of the golf course. What a grand setting; I wish my church would come down and do an occasional service! But then who’d want to go back inside? :) . Stovepipe Wells Village also has a Sunday service in the auditorium at 9:00 a.m.
These are by the Christian Ministry in the National Parks, which was created to provide a ministry for people who visit or work in parks. They recruit and send pastors and theology students to dozens of parks in summer or (as in DV) other peak visitor seasons. They hire on with park resorts, live in employee housing, and are encouraged to engage in daily ministry as appropriate. While nondenominational, they lean toward mainstream and evangelical Protestant. The worship style will vary with the people conducting.
Catholic Mass is held on 1st and 3rd Sundays at 6:15 p.m. This is at the Furnace Creek Ranch recreation building; ask at the hotel front office for directions. I don’t know which jurisdiction of the church provides this so I have no contact info.
I’m sorry to report that in-park services do not go all year. They end around the time the Inn closes for the season and resume in the fall. However, the “Date Grove Chapel” is open to the public any time. And who’s to say you can’t take your scriptures, prayers, and questions for God anywhere you think He might be, and have your own personal worship? Psalm 23 takes on new meaning at Badwater or out in the Sand Dunes!
The nearest churches are in Beatty, 40 miles from FC or SPW.
-- Baptist (aka Hilltop Christian Church), 1501 SR 374. Just inside the west end of town on the north side of the road; you can’t miss the slender white spire. 775-553-2864.
Sunday School: Children 9:00-10:15, adults 10:00-10:45
Worship service: 11:00 a.m.
Wednesday night Bible study and Saturday movie and fellowship available
-- Latter-day Saint, 801 North C Street. From Hwy 374, turn north on C (left if coming from DV), go as far as Hill St. and look for the white and light yellow modular with a spire. 775-553-2051.
Worship service 10:00 a.m., followed by Sunday School for different ages, then men/women/youth/children specific groups.
-- Beatty Community Church, Knight Ave. at Watson St. From Hwy 374, turn south on C (right if coming from DV) then left on Knight to the reverse L-shaped building with a spire. 775-553-2088
Sunday School: Children 9:00 a.m. at Hilltop Christian, bus provided; adults 9:30 a.m.
Worship Service: 11:00.
Wednesday night Bible study available
From Panamint Springs, Trona is closer and has Baptist, Catholic, Four-Square Gospel, Presbyterian, and Community churches. The closest synagogue is Temple Beth Torah, which meets at the Interfaith Chapel on the China Lake Naval Weapons Center base in Ridgecrest. Their website has a listing for the president of the congregation, so I thought it would be OK to post it: J. L. Wieder, 760-373-3336.