Jimmy Carter Teaches Sunday School a Week After Grandson Dies

If only we all had clients like this.

Public relations is about finding a story within a story, finding a triumph within a news cycle.

What former President Jimmy Carter did this weekend was most definitely a triumph.

When he’s not out discovering a way to serve mankind globally or fighting brain cancer, he teaches Sunday School at his church in Plains, Ga. (Yes, really.)

This past month has been the metaphorical journey of walking through of the valley of the shadow of death (biblical reference for those scoring at home). Two weeks ago, Carter announced that all traces of cancer in his brain were gone. Last Sunday, his 28-year-old grandson passed away.

Jeremy Carter wasn’t feeling well, so he laid down for a nap. He didn’t wake up. The following Sunday, you would expect Jimmy Carter to still be grieving and stay home, but he did what most in his position wouldn’t.

He taught Sunday School anyway.

“(President Carter) was shaken,” [Maranatha Baptist Church Rev. Jeremy Shoulta] said. “He was obviously sad although he was able to teach and he was able to present the lesson as well as he always has. But it was apparent to everyone there that this was weighing on him very heavily.”

“Our church plays an important role in his (President Carter’s) life and he feels committed to his responsibilities here at the church,” Shoulta said. “His presence at the church today gave him an opportunity to fulfill his obligations to the church and also to feel the loving presence of his faith community.”

By the way, Carter, 91, was 25 minutes late for class. He apologized. And that is good PR. Class dismissed.


[Featured Photo: AP Photo/David Goldman]