June 23, 2023

Dear Peachtree Road Family,

I hope you are well. This Sunday is our annual Celebration of Freedom service, and we will be singing patriotic hymns, hearing inspirational music from our Freedom Sunday volunteer choir, and honoring our veterans. For many, that moment in the service when the veterans march down the aisle to the expressed appreciation of our congregation is one of the highlights of the year at Peachtree Road UMC.

Almost none of our marching veterans are from World War II (even the youngest of them would be 96 years old), and that makes my heart sad. We owe so much to them and all of our veterans who have willingly put on a military uniform and served our country. If you know of a veteran who does not have a church home, please invite him or her to this service, and we will honor them as they participate in the parade of veterans.

Here are a few important notes about Freedom Sunday at Peachtree Road:

  • This Sunday I will be preaching on the topic “A Prayer for Our Nation…” I have done some research into prayers that former Presidents of the United States have prayed at important moments in our history, and I think you will find them inspiring and challenging. We will spend some time thinking about the important role our faith plays in our citizenship in this land, and I encourage you to read II Chronicles 7:12-15 in preparation for the message.

  • The service will conclude with a prayer for our nation as Timothy Miller leads us in singing “God Bless America.” This will be a most inspirational service, and I hope you are planning to be present. Wear your patriotic colors and invite someone to come with you! There is a place for everyone at Peachtree Road.

  • You also are invited to stay for a fellowship luncheon with your church friends in Grace Hall. I invite you to come to worship and stay for a delicious meal featuring fried chicken and all the fixings. Cost for the meal is $10 per person, $5 per child, and $40 maximum per family. We will be serving lunch from 11:00 am until 1:00 pm, and I hope to see you there.

And, while we’re on the topic of patriotic celebrations, I want to invite you to join us in front of the church on Tuesday, July 4, for our “Party on Peachtree” from 6:30 am until 8:30 am. The elite runners start in front of Lenox Square (women at 6:50 am and men at 7:00 am) and sprint past the church within 5 minutes. We will gather out front to enjoy a time of fellowship as we cheer on the 60,000 participants as they sprint/jog/walk past our church as a part of the Peachtree Road Race. The church bells will be ringing, and the large American flag will be flying! Come spend the early hours of the holiday with your church family.

Two weeks ago at Annual Conference, I was notified that there are a few cabins still available for this year’s “Journeys of Paul Cruise” to Turkey and Greece. Jamie Jenkins and I will be leading a trip tracing Paul’s 2nd and 3rd missionary journeys this fall (October 20-30). I know this may seem last minute, but we would love to have you join us aboard for this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to experience the land of Paul with other United Methodists. The online brochure is here. For more information, please contact Jamie Jenkins at jamiej@prumc.org.

Finally, you are invited to participate in the Anniston Civil Rights Trail experience on August 26. This is a joint venture being sponsored by Cascade UMC and Peachtree Road UMC. Members of our two churches will travel together on Saturday, August 26, to Anniston, Alabama to commemorate the events of the American Civil Rights Movement and receive an introduction to the cultural changes that have transformed Anniston into the city it is today. Participants will leave Atlanta at 10:00 am, travel together via charter bus, eat lunch together, learn together, and return by 5:00 pm. The cost is $20 per person, and you may register here. We already have one bus nearly filled and are looking at adding a second bus. Join in the experience.

I hope to see you in worship this Sunday at either 8:45 am, 10:00 am, or 11:15 am. However, if you are out of town or traveling, please worship with us online here. Either way, I look forward to worshiping with you as we celebrate our freedom and pray for God to heal our land.

Grace and peace,