March 1, 2024

Dear Peachtree Road Family,

I hope you are well. At the close of this note, I will share some news with you about an important development for our second campus on the Westside. However, I want to begin this week’s note by thanking the Deep Waters Class for sponsoring Wednesday evening’s forum in Grace Hall on the current conflict in the Holy Land. 

Rabbi Peter Berg and Dr. Fahed Abu-Akel were our panelists, and Dr. Deanna Ferree Womack from Candler School of Theology served as moderator. It was a spirited conversation as Rabbi Berg and Dr. Abu-Akel offered very different perspectives. For example, Rabbi Berg suggested that any cease-fire in the current hostilities must be preceded by the return of all Israeli hostages by Hamas. On the other hand, Dr. Abu-Akel called for an immediate cease-fire without conditions. I was grateful for the conversation for three reasons. First, we realized anew that this is a complex issue with no simple solutions. Second, in conversations like this one, agreement is not the goal. Understanding is what we are after, and I came out of the hour with a better understanding of the different perspectives. Finally, at the close of the conversation, our panelists embraced one another and pledged to continue the conversation and the work for peace. I am proud that Peachtree Road UMC is a place where people can come together and have difficult conversations. Thank you to the Deep Waters Class for sponsoring this important forum.  

I really am looking forward to Sunday as we continue our Lenten series entitled “Rekindling the Fires of Our Faith.” This week’s message will highlight the importance of worship for our spiritual growth. I believe it was Harry Emerson Fosdick who observed: “Within each of us there is a little plant called reverence that needs to be watered at least once a week.” I have found that worshiping at Peachtree Road UMC feeds that need for mystery, awe, and reverence that our souls crave. In preparation for Sunday’s message, I encourage you to read Psalm 95:1-7. I know that many of our families will be on spring break this week, but, if you are in town, please join us at either 8:45 am, 10:00 am, or 11:15 am. If you will not be in town, join us online here.

Are you new to Peachtree Road UMC and looking for ways to connect? Here are two opportunities to help you navigate this large church and find new connections:

  • Take a Tour of Peachtree Road’s Facilities – Sunday, March 3, at 10:00 am. Meet your guide in Heritage Hall for a tour of the campus and a brief overview of the church’s ministries and offerings. For more information, please contact Elizabeth Byrd at
  • Explore Membership in Peachtree Road UMC – Sunday, March 10, at 12:30 pm in the Hospitality Suite. At this month’s “Tea with the Clergy” luncheon, you will have the opportunity to meet with several members of our clergy staff, hear about the ministry of this great church, ask questions, and even have an opportunity to join at the end of the session. For more information, or to sign up, please contact Elizabeth Byrd at

Have you signed up yet for the Season of Service? You may click here to view the projects and their corresponding dates. From baking cookies to building a Habitat for Humanity home, there is something for everyone. We have meaningful outreach opportunities in which folks of all ages and stages of life can participate. Please sign up and experience the blessing of giving.

You are invited to the dedication of the church’s new parsonage on Sunday, March 10, at 5:00 pm. The new home at 3210 West Shadowlawn. (right across the street from the soccer field) has been completed and will be dedicated on that date. We are grateful that the home is already paid for, and our associate minister Josh Miles, and his family will be moving into the home later in March. You are invited to the dedication and open house that is to follow. 

Finally, as promised, let me share some news about our campus on the Westside.Many of you know that two years ago we launched a new campus called the Westside Table. It has grown to a congregation of nearly 200 with an average weekly attendance of approximately 100 and meets at the Round-Trip Brewery. This week members of Collins Memorial UMC on the Westside voted unanimously to merge with Peachtree Road UMC. If this merger is finalized, we will have secured a permanent location for our Westside campus. This could be a win-win for the people of Collins Memorial UMC and us here at Peachtree Road UMC. We have been in conversation with the fine folks there for nearly a year, and this could be the answer to many prayers. Our District Superintendent Dr. Michael McQueen has authorized us to have a church conference on Monday, March 25, at 6:30 pm, to vote to ratify the merger. You will receive more information about this in the coming days, but I wanted you to know about this development and to invite you to the meeting on March 25. Thank you for your prayerful support of this innovative ministry of the church. 

I hope to see you Sunday as we continue our journey through the season of Lent. together

Grace and peace,