September 22, 2023

Dear Peachtree Road Family,

I hope you are well. Earlier this week I met with a cohort of pastors of United Methodist Churches from across the country in Indianapolis. It was a good time of catching up, comparing notes, and encouraging one another. I came away grateful – grateful for the fellowship with some very gifted colleagues, grateful for what we learned from each other, and especially grateful for Peachtree Road UMC! We don’t always get it just right, but the ministry of this church is a vital presence in this community and is making a difference in the lives of tens of thousands of people.

Last Sunday it was a privilege to present Bibles to the third graders. More than 60 students got up early to come to church to receive their Bible and then begin the journey of learning to hear the voice of the Lord speaking to them through scripture. As I heard third-grader George Nunn read the scripture lesson before the sermon, I realized anew how blessed we are by God. We don’t take the privilege of being able to nurture the faith of one another for granted. It was a blessing!

This Sunday we will bring our series of messages on prayer entitled “The Disciples’ Prayer” to a close. In week one of the series, we reflected upon the nature of the God to whom we pray. We remembered that our God is relational and sees you, knows you, cares for you, and walks with you always as a loving parent. God also is great and able to do far more than we can ever ask or imagine. That is what it means to pray, “Our Father…” Last week we considered two petitions Jesus taught his disciples to pray and came to the realization that God often uses us to answer each other’s prayers. This week will focus upon the petition “…And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.” Forgiveness may be one of the most challenging aspects of the Christian faith. I love what Frederick Buechner writes about forgiveness in his book Wishful Thinking: A Theological ABC:

“To accept forgiveness means to admit that you’ve done something unspeakable that needs to be forgiven, and thus both parties must swallow the same thing: their pride.”

We’ll talk about this petition Jesus encourages us to pray on Sunday, and I hope you will join us in person at 8:45 am, 10:00 am, or 11:15 am or online at

One Lamb Mental Health Initiative Forums:

  • Lessons from the Valley: What We Learn in Times of Loss – Sunday, September 24, at 10:00 am in the Sanctuary. Ron Greer, Director of the Pastoral Counseling Center at Peachtree Road UMC, will speak on grief and how healing can come from engaging the mourning of our significant losses. His new book entitled The Quiet House is now available in The Dogwood Gift Shop.
  • Twenty/20 for Young Adults – Sunday, September 24, at 6:00 pm in the Hospitality Suite. Doug Hurd from Skyland Trail will speak with young adults ages 22-30 on how to recognize when you’re struggling and how to help yourself and others through periods of anxiety or depression.
  • Financial Assistance for Mental Wellness – Are you in need of financial assistance to get the mental health help you need? Resources are available at

You may learn more about each of these by visiting the One Lamb website:

Ron Greer Book Signing – on Sunday, September 24, Ron Greer will sign copies of his new book, The Quiet House, after his 10:00 am forum and after the 11:15 am worship service. In this book, Ron tenderly invites readers into his own grief journey with messages of healing and hope. Through an elegant series of personal reflections, Ron shares his path toward restoration and eventual transition into a new life that lies ahead. Find out how to get your copy of The Quiet House at 

Have you had an opportunity to check out the Peachtree Road Storybook website? It was created to share the history and ministry of our church…one story at a time. Creative director Marcia Gaddis leads a team of researchers, writers, and editors from our congregation. As we approach our Centennial Celebration in 2025, a new chapter is added each month to relay the history and legacy of our church’s ministry. This month women in ministry are highlighted. Enjoy a brief history complete with photos and recollections by visiting www.peachtreeroadstorybook

Finally, have you ever wanted to sing with the Chancel Choir? Then you are invited to an open rehearsal on Wednesday, October 11, at 7:00 pm in the Music Suite. You will have an opportunity to join the Chancel Choir in the warm-up by singing a few hymns in preparation for Sunday’s service and then rehearse a beautiful arrangement of the well-known hymn “It Is Well with My Soul.” It is designed to give you the feel of what it is like to be a part of this singing community of faith. For more information, contact Scott Atchison, director of music, at

Thank you for your faith in Christ and commitment to this great church. Please let us know if we can be of help to you in any way.  

Grace and peace,