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• AFDS Parents’ Council Mtg: Wednesday, January 14th at 4:00 PM
• UMW Meeting: Tuesday, January 20th at 11:00 AM
• Miami University Men's Glee Club Concert: Thursday, January 22nd at 7:00 PM
• Peachtree Road UMC Celebration Choir: Sunday, January 25th during worship
• Hospitality House Dinner: Tuesday, January 27th at 6:00 PM
• SafeHouse Outreach Dinner: Tuesday, February 3rd at 3:30 PM


Congratulations to Stefan and Holley Forsyth on the birth of Connor Alexander on December 25th, 2014. Connor’s proud grandparents are Suzie and Aaron Moody.

Welcome New Members!

Please welcome the newest members of the Atlanta First family: Jeanne Spencer (our Day School’s Assistant Director) who transferred from North Avenue Presbyterian and Jill Brown as an Affiliate Member.

The Altar Guild:
Flowers For The Sanctuary

Each week our chancel area is made even more beautiful by the addition of flowers. The arrangements are sponsored by individuals or families in the church. The flowers can be in Honor of, or in Memory of someone you love. You can also honor a Sunday School class or a friend. The cost for the two arrangements is $120. If you would like more information call the church office at 404-524-6614 and talk to Cornelia Witte or Jeanne Spencer. The following dates are available for 2014:

January 18 & 25
February 1, 8, 15 & 22
Miami University Glee Club Concert

The Miami University Men’s Glee Club of Oxford, Ohio will be presenting a concert as part of their southeast winter tour at Atlanta First on Thursday, January 22nd at 7:00 PM. The Miami University Men’s Glee club is an outstanding choir which has been recognized nationally for their musical excellence. The concert is free and open to the public! Please join us for this wonderful night of music.

Guest Youth Choir

The Peachtree Road United Methodist Church Celebration Choir will join us for worship on Sunday, January 25th. Please plan to attend this worship service as we host these special music guests!

The UMW will meet on Tuesday, January 20th at 11:00 AM. Carol Colly will be the presenter, and she will share photos from her recent trip, “Journey to Yellowstone.”

Church Family
Mickey Angel

Margaret Davis
Marlee Franklin

Nelda Hill
Jackie Scarborough

W. Clyde Thomas
Homebound Church Family
Jack & Harriet Head Dot Miller Betty Small
Extended Church Family and Friends
Keith Badey,
A Day School Father
Dollie Gilreath,
Mother of Dede Gilreath

The Family of Erin Holcomb,
A Day School Mother
The Gideon Perkins Family,
Friends of Natalie Smith
Active Duty Military
Major Chuck Bowen,
Son of Claudia Harris

MSgt. Logan Cathcart,
Grandson of Virginia Cathcart
MSgt. Scott Cathcart,
Son of Virginia Cathcart

Cpt. Ben Fulp,
Friend of Patricia Thomason
Lt. Rusty Hearn
Nephew of Pat Sibley

Pvt. Matthew Ross
Cousin of Dr. Charles Gardner


Condolences to the family & friends of Isobel Ginn who passed away on Saturday, November 1st, 2014. Her service was held on Wednesday November 5th in Stockbridge, Georgia.

Condolences to Aaron Moody and Family, whose brother-in-law, Bobby Taylor passed away on Tuesday, November 4th, 2014 in Charleston, South Carolina.

Condolences to the family of Betty Athon whose grandson, Jonathon Athon, died Friday, November 7th in Savannah, Georgia, as a result of injuries sustained in a motorcycle accident.

Condolences to Hubert Davis and family on the sudden death of his nephew, Greg Davis on Monday, November 10th, 2014.

Condolences to the family and friends of Bonnie Landrum who passed away on Thursday, November 13th, 2014 in Villa Rica, Georgia. Funeral services were held on November 15th in Douglasville, Georgia.

Condolences to the family and friends of Rev’d Dr. C Robert Allred, who passed away on Thursday, December 4th, 2014. Dr. Allred served as Senior Pastor of Atlanta First from 2003 to 2007.

Bits and Pieces of Our Past - or - A tale of Three Candlers

hen our church built its second sanctuary in 1870, the building proudly sat on the property where Peachtree Street and Houston Street form a triangle. The imposing Gothic style building featured a 180 foot spire which housed the church bell, with two 90 foot pinnacles on either side of the spire. The sanctuary sat 1,000 worshipers and there were ample rooms for Sunday School classes. However, by 1902 the congregation had outgrown the space in the church. Also the traffic on Peachtree Street had increased so much that it was impossible for the congregation to hear the pastor in the summer months when the windows were open. So, the congregation decided to move the church farther north on Peachtree Street.

When the congregation decided to move from the downtown area, it met strong opposition from the presiding Bishop Warren A. Candler. Bishop Candler met with the church’s building committee on June 4, 1902 in an effort to stop the move. The committee, however, voted to build the new church at Peachtree and Porter Place.

On Saturday, April 18, 1903, the “Ceremony of the Laying of the Corner Stone” was held at the construction site of the new church. The next evening, Sunday, April 19, 1903, a final farewell service was held in the 1870 Church. The congregation held services in a large tent across Porter Place from the new church until December 1, 1903, when the new church was completed.

The property that held the old church was sold to a syndicate for $98,000. The syndicate in turn sold the property to Asa G. Candler, brother of Bishop Warren Candler. Asa had been looking for property on which to build the first “skyscraper” in the city of Atlanta. The triangle the old church sat on was perfect for his project. This property also included the site of Wesley Chapel which had been demolished in 1871. The first order of business for his project was the demolition of the 1870 Church.

Meanwhile in Villa Rica, Georgia, another Candler brother, William, was serving as Clerk of Sessions of Villa Rica Presbyterian Church. All three brothers and their eight other siblings had been born to Samuel and Martha Candler in Villa Rica. The Candler family had been faithful members of this church for many years. Founded in 1855, the church had for years been meeting in homes of its members. In 1885 the church built a white frame building on Candler Street.

As the 1870 church in Atlanta was being demolished, Asa saved some of the better “pieces” for his brother William’s church building. This included eleven stained glass windows, mahogany pews, high-backed pulpit chairs and a large oak pulpit. The windows and pews were installed in the church and the other pieces placed on the chancel. In a letter to AFUMC Church Historian William Forsyth, dated March 24, 1983, Mary Candler Eyler verifies these acquisitions. Her father, William Candler, Jr. had served on the building committee that supervised the installation of the windows and furnishings.

When William Candler, Sr. died he donated his property to the church. In 1930 the building was moved to this property, was bricked, and a basement was added. Today the windows and other objects from our 1870 still grace the sanctuary of this small church. When our family visited the First Presbyterian Church of Villa Rica several years ago, we were proudly shown the beautiful little sanctuary that holds bits and pieces of Atlanta First’s past.

Dr. Bob Smith

Forsyth, William H. A History of The First Methodist Church of Atlanta, Georgia 1847-1989. First Methodist Church of Atlanta: 1989.

Eyler, Mary Candler. Letter to William Forsyth-March 24, 1983. Archives of Atlanta First United Methodist Church.

First Presbyterian Church of Villa Rica, PCA. “A Brief History of Our Church”.

Note: On the website for First Presbyterian Church of Villa Rica, PCA, it is stated that the windows and other items came from “Old Wesley Memorial Church” in Atlanta. This cannot be true as Wesley Memorial was not built until 1902 and was demolished in 1964. Mrs. Eyler’s letter and drawings of the interior of the 1870 sanctuary confirm that the items came from our church.

Atlanta Hospitality House
Tuesday, January 27th - 6:00 PM

“I was sick and you looked after me…”

Since 1981 the Atlanta Hospital Hospitality House has strived to provide a “home away from home” to outpatients and relative of patients hospitalized in 21 Atlanta area hospitals.

At 6:00 PM on the fourth Tuesday of each month, we meet at the Hospitality House at 1815 Ponce de Leon Ave. to prepare and serve a meal and also to fellowship with the guests. To serve with us, please contact M.L. Purcell via email at

SafeHouse Outreach Dinner
Tuesday, February 3rd - 4:00 PM

“For when I was hungry you gave me something to eat…” (Matthew 25:35)

SafeHouse, located at 89 Ellis Street, provides practical, emotional, physical, and spiritual assistance to those living in the margins, to help integrate them back into society. On the first Tuesday of each month you’re invited to help provide hot meals for nearly 300 men, women, and children. You may meet the team in the Atlanta First UMC Fellowship Hall at 4:00 PM for meal preparation and travel with the team to SafeHouse for dinner and worship at 6:00 PM; or join in the fellowship anytime you can arrive.



Lucille Mitchell
Makayla Eldridge

Jack Head
Carrie Orr
Reuben Darku
Jason Rolader

Will Small




Beverly Bush

Dr. Charles Z. Gardner, Sr.
Clyde Thomas III

Bernard Reynolds

Mark Garrard

Alan Tolvert





Robert Landrum

Lisa Shuping

Nelda Hill

Connor Forsyth

Lindsay Thomas

Liz Dailey







Virginia Cathcart
Mary Frances Rice

Dorothy Fraser

Matt Scroggs

Becky Moody
Robin King

Lisa Upton

Jere Burrus
Leanne Money

Terrie Pierson
Breanna Donahue

Franklin Chandler
Sannie Dennard







Kenneth Reid, Jr.
Eyler Thomas
Emily Stotler

Kirk Viator

Mary Elaine Townsend
Valerie Shellnutt
Adam Moody
Alex Moody

Lisa Peterson

Christen Chandler

Carolyn Dailey

William Small, Jr.

Rev’d Ed Nelson







Ariel Merivil
Elle Weidert

Cherry Lowery

Harriett Head

Rich Babb

Gerald Brock

Ashley Rolader

Maria Lee
George Webb
Aaron Thomas

Katherine Stotler
Catherine Kenimer
Week Of: November 2 November 9 November 16 November 23 November 30
Sunday School Attendance: 40 38 34 30 41
Worship Attendance: 96 101 105 70 107
Regular Giving: $5,570.00 $2,642.00 $5,373.00 $1,245.00 $1,525.00

November Online Giving: $4,179.00

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