May 31, 2019

Dear Peachtree Road Family,

I hope this note finds you well. I really am looking forward to being back with you in worship this Sunday as we celebrate Founder’s Day.

Peachtree Road was founded on June 7, 1925, when the newly-formed congregation held its first public worship service. I love history. I love the stories that come from our history, and I love the way the past informs both the present and the future. Our history reminds us of our identity and inspires us to be the people we have been called to be. On Sunday we worship with hearts filled with gratitude and remember those who founded our church:

Mrs. E.H. Wood, Mr. Guy H. Wood, Miss Ruth Wood, Miss Mary Wood, Mrs. M.T. Salter, Dr. and Mrs. F.D. Salter, Mr. and Mrs. R.E. Andoe, Mrs. L.H. Seymour, Miss Caroline Seymour, Mrs. Eva Miller, Mrs. J.C. Henderson, Mrs. Elizabeth Walker, Mr. and Mrs. James L. Respess, Sr., Mr. and Mrs. C.J. Cofer, Miss Josephine Cofer

We give thanks for their faith, hope, and courage.

The interesting thing about that first worship service 94 years ago is that the building had a roof and floor but no walls. Somehow, that seems appropriate to me. Even from its founding, Peachtree Road has been a church without walls – a church that understands its primary mission is to reach out into the community to share the love, mercy, and grace of God with others.

Speaking of reaching out beyond the walls, let me remind you to pray for some of our mission teams that are serving this summer:

  • The Nation of Georgia – a group of adults from our church left for Georgia a week ago and is spending time with the children we sponsor in that country. This is our 20th year of ministry for our church in Georgia.
  • Belize Young Adult Mission Team – a group of young adults will leave for Belize tomorrow and will focus their efforts on empowering teachers and students as they share their faith and build relationships with families through Vacation Bible School.
  • Belize Youth Mission Team – next week a group of our high school youth will be in Belize and partner with Praying Pelican Missions to build a church, offer Vacation Bible School, and distribute food to families.
  • Kenya Family Mission Team – later in June, a family mission team will head to Kenya to continue the work of distributing water filters to families in need of clean water. They also will collect the data we need to more effectively transform lives in the future.
  • Prison Restoration – here at home, a dedicated team of volunteers is working to restore families that have members currently serving time in one of Georgia’s prisons. This is a special ministry to which Jesus has called the church. If you are interested in becoming a part of our team, plan to attend the Prison Ministry Volunteer Training event next Saturday, June 8, at 9:00 am in the Hospitality Suite at the church. For more information, please contact Diane Scanlan.

In addition to our mission teams, we also are sending musical teams out into the world this summer to bring beautiful music to others:

  • Doxology Youth Choir – tomorrow our youth choir under the direction of Kathy Fletcher leaves for a tour that will take them to churches, parks, and retirement homes in Greenville, Columbia, and Myrtle Beach in South Carolina.
  • Georgia Boy Choir – currently our ensemble-in-residence under the direction of David White and accompanied by Scott Atchison is performing in some of the great cathedrals in Italy.

I am grateful for a church that takes Christ’s call to live beyond our walls seriously and is united in ministry to the least, the last, and the lost. I hope you will remember all of these in your prayers.

Speaking of unity, in Sunday’s message we will reflect upon Jesus’ prayer for his disciples that we find in John’s Gospel:

“I ask not only on behalf of these, but also on behalf of those who will believe in me through their word, that they all be one…” – John 17:20

Here, Christ prays for his disciples (and for the church) to be united. Do you think God answered Jesus’ prayer? If so, how are we united? That’s what I want us to wrestle with on Sunday.

I realize the summer has begun and many of you are enjoying vacations. If you are unable to be present on Sunday morning, I remind you that we offer three options for worship:

  1. LiveStream of the 11:15 am service in the sanctuary – this may be accessed through the church app or the church website.
  2. Sundays @ 5 on Sunday afternoon at 5:00 pm in the Moore Chapel – this is a casual “come-as-you-are” service that welcomes everyone for a time of worship.
  3. Video of the 11:15 am sanctuary service – you may locate past services for viewing through the church app or through the website usually by Monday afternoon each week.

These may not bring you the same spiritual benefit as being present with others for worship, but they are great ways to stay connected to your church family.

Thank you for your faithfulness in so many ways to the ministry of Peachtree Road. See you Sunday!

Bill