We’d like to share a brief history of Cornerstone United Methodist Church from inception to today. We hope you will come and share your time, talents, gifts, and service toward the ministries of the church as we continue to make history at Cornerstone.
New Beginning 1985
In 1985, the North Georgia Conference Church Development Committee anticipating rapid growth of eastern Coweta County purchased 12 acres at Thomas Crossroads. The land sat idle until June 1991 when Dr. Alton McEachern and wife Virginia were appointed to lead “Coweta’s Exciting New Church”. He remarked at being appointed to a church without a congregation and without a building. Seed members began meeting in July and transitioned from home meetings to renting the Peachtree City Seventh Day Adventist building on August 4, 1991. The church continued to grow until it was officially chartered on March 31, 1991 with 100 members. During this time the name Cornerstone was officially voted on and adopted. A need for larger space led to a move to East Coweta High School in June 1993.
Current Building Site
The first funds for the building program were raised during a fund raiser in 1991 and continued thru our first BBQ in 1992. In 1993, a formal 30 month “Together We Build” campaign began which allowed us to proceed with site preparation and then construction of the Sanctuary (also called the Celebration Room) and office wing. Continued explosive growth then led to “Together We Build 2” resulting in the education building ”Fitzgerald Hall” named after Bishop Earnest Fitzgerald, which was dedicated in November 1995 as our membership grew to 400. The first service in the new building was held in November 1995. In 1997 McEachern Education Center was completed. In 1999 Dr. McEachern received the Harry Denman Evangelism Award (http://www.ngaumc.org/denmanaward) for conversion of 63 adults to Christianity during the year prior to his retirement. The last piece of the current building layout including the Preschool space and Narthex were completed in 2001 under Pastor David Campbell (2001-2005).
The continued growth of the congregation led to the 1999 start of the Preschool program with 10 children and 2 teachers. Currently the Preschool has 120 students, 15 support staff and Director. Similarly, this growth allowed expansion of our other programs like Youth, Music, and Children’s Ministries. In 2005, the first Vacation Bible School (VBS) was held. Adult Sunday school classes were expanded which meet regularly along with classes for children, Middle and High School Youth. A child care nursery was begun, expanded and now staff is available for all services. Reverend Joe Watson (2005-1011) was appointed as Sr. Pastor.
Missions and Outreach
In 2006, Cornerstone sponsored a new Korean congregation, hosting the church in our facilities until breaking ground in the spring of 2012 on their own building. Cornerstone was honored with the “Mother Church of the Year” award. Our Missions focus led to participation in local, national and international projects. Our open door policy enables many local organizations to utilize our building as their meeting place including both Boy and Girl Scout troops. In 2015, Reverend Rick Price (2011-2016, retired) and Associate Pastor, Reverend Shannon Karafanda (2011-) representing CUMC received the Church Excellence in Missions Award.
Our current worship services include a Praise Service with Praise band at 9:00 and a traditional service with the Chancel Choir at 11:00.
Cornerstone is known for its BIG EVENTS. Our annual Beef BBQ, began in 1992 and became the highlight of the year for both the church and the community. It was initially established as a fund raiser for the building fund which continued until 2014. Currently Cornerstone has 3 BIG EVENTS. Our Drive Thru Ministries program presents a Christmas Drive Thru Nativity and an Easter Drive Thru. These events are our gift to the community with over 21,000 visitors to date. The events enable all church members to participate and grow closer to one another in Christ. Our VBS program continued to grow from the early years and now has over 200 children from our congregation as well as the community taking part in this event.
Under the guidance of Reverend Dr. Scott Pickering (2016-) we look forward to 2017 and beyond as we continue to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.