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NJ Church Mixes Christmas With Cosmos In 'Star Wars' Themed Service

NEW BRUNSWICK, N.J. (CBSNewYork/AP) -- A New Jersey pastor and "Star Wars'' enthusiast is using the power of the force to tell the Christmas story this year.

Pastor Tim Lucas says Liquid Church will be holding "Cosmic Christmas'' services at its multiple campuses that will weave parts of the "Star Wars'' movies together with biblical theology.

The services coincide with this week's release of "Star Wars: The Force Awakens.''

In a video on the event's website, Lucas said he got the idea for the event from his own childhood experiences.

"Growing up, I was a boy who loved adventure," Lucas said. "So unbeknownst to my mom, I swapped out all of the nativity figurines for my collection of action figures from Star Wars."

On Thursday, fans flocked to the theaters in anticipation for the long-awaited release of the newest 'Star Wars' installment. Many dressed up for the event, donning themed costumes as they waited for hours on line.

The new film has already smashed ticket records, with a whopping $100 million in pre-sales.

Lucas says there are parallels between the Bible and Star Wars, particularly in the good versus evil cosmology.  

He says the story will be told from  "heaven's perspective," WCBS 880's Kelly Waldron reported.

"Revelation 12 tells the story of Christmas from Heaven's perspective," Lucas said. "There's an evil rebellion, a miraculous birth, and a battle between the stars -- between good and evil."

A Christmas Eve performance is planned where congregants will wield glow sticks shaped like light sabers instead of lighting candles. Participants will also be able to sit and take a photo with "Darth Santa," and win prizes handed out by Christmas-themed Stormtroopers.

Liquid Church has branches in Nutley, Middlesex, Morristown, Somerville and Mountainside.

(TM and © Copyright 2015 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2015 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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