PLAINS, Ga. — Love, compassion and peace was the message, Sunday, from two of Georgia's biggest names in politics, as they joined forces to offer a lesson in spirituality.
Ambassador Andrew Young, Atlanta's former mayor and congressman, teamed up with former Georgia governor and President Jimmy Carter for his weekly Sunday school lesson at Maranatha Baptist Church in Plains, Georgia.
Early on a hot Sunday morning, hundreds gathered - standing in line, waiting to hear from the two leaders.
"We got a real treat this morning," Carter said.
Many waited overnight to hear from Carter and Young, his appointee to the United Nations.
"We got here about 7:30, a quarter of eight last night," said Ursula Smith, who traveled from Alabama.
"To me, this is a bucket-list experience," said Odessa Archibald, of Cordele, Georgia. "A great opportunity"
Carter generously shared his Sunday school chair with the civil rights icon, who spoke about the spirituality of their approach to working in the world.
"Between the two of us, it always ended up spiritual. That means it wasn't political," Young said. "Nobody in good politics would do some of the things that he did - or told me to do - if you were trying to get elected or reelected. He never asked, 'what is the public opinion on this?' His only question was the spiritual question: Is it morally right for the country, and not only this country, is it the right thing for the world in which we live."
"Jesus envisioned a nation that was a champion of peace and human rights and, I would say, equality and environment," Carter added. (Click here to watch the full lesson)
Neither man mentioned President Donald Trump, the recent deadly shootings, or other topics leading to division in our country, but the church's new leader, Pastor Tony Lowden - the first African-American to hold the post - offered a link in the importance of their words.
"Our nation is in the ICU unit. If not, the world is in the ICU unit. We have all different types of tragedies that are taking place - from the shootings that have taken place, to the bombings that are taking place around the world, to all the things that are taken place where we have people turning against each other," Lowden said.
"To come here today and hear to great icons with servant-leaders' hearts to talk about compassion, talk about loving folks and talking about doing whatever they can to help folks," is important and needed, he concluded.