Coffee County Mayor Gary Cordell met with over a dozen of the county’s religious leaders on Thursday to discuss the One Day of Hope event, prisoner rehabilitation and the unification of local churches and the community.
The Ministers’ Brunch, hosted by Morning Pointe in Tullahoma, was the brainchild of Dr. Neil Loeffler.
Ron Fuller, of Sojourner’s Fellowship, opened the event by thanking Loeffler.
“Neil has worked hard to help the clergy in the county talk to each other and Neil, we appreciate you,” he said.
Forest Mill Church of Christ Minister Chris Boyce gave a short presentation about the One Day of Hope event. Boyce hopes to bring in more volunteers from churches throughout Coffee County.
The event offers free gifts and services such as meals, haircuts, clothing and family portraits to those who attend. It will be held Saturday, Oct. 17 at the Coffee County Fairgrounds.
“Seeing God’s people coming together in the spirit of unity is so encouraging,” said Boyce.
“This is a way for us to plug in and reach our community,” said Christ Community Church pastor the Rev. Jim Zidan.
Cordell also addressed the religious leaders to close the brunch.
“I really appreciate our county trustee, John Marchesoni, and our county district attorney, Craig Northcott, for being here today,” said Cordell. “I invited them because I think it’s important for the clergy of our county to know that we have some godly men in office and it matters who governs.
“Part of my focus is to bring unity to our county.”
Last weekend, Cordell and other Coffee County administrators visited Birmingham, Alabama to learn about prison and jail ministry.
Small group prayer sessions were emphasized as a key to rehabilitation. Cordell and Coffee County Jail Chaplain Charlie Graham hope to implement this practice at the Coffee County jail.
“I am praying for spiritual transformation in our county to the point that it impacts our culture, every aspect of our county, even in our jail system,” said Cordell.
Cordell said he hopes to meet with religious leaders throughout the year, as a group and individually, to pray for the county.
“I say as mayor of this county that we stand in partnership with you,” said Cordell. “The ability and opportunity to affect future generations is in your hands.”