At the November, 2013, meeting of the Des Moines Presbytery, John and Dorothy Peak were appropriately recognized as “Faithful through the Years” by the Older Adult Ministries Task Force. Their recommendation for this honor had come from our local Session.
Dorothy and John have been active and contributing members of our church community for over 69 consecutive years. We do gratefully acknowledge that they (and their extended family) have been among the firmest “pillars” of this church—not unlike the neo-classical white columns that once graced their beloved old Greek revival building (1907 to 1977). John and Dorothy of course loved that old building, and we invite you to look up in our 2002 church history (Leanne Harris’ A Century of Faith) the central picture of John appropriately overseeing the careful removal and preservation of those columns by his son-in law, Tom Hotchkin. They also, of course, devoted themselves equally to the planning and construction of the current building. John helped design it, worked with contractors, and donated much hard labor to the project. He and Dorothy joined others in that tearful/joyful walk to the new structure on Easter Sunday morning 1977.
One of the Peaks’ most notable contributions to all of us has been their unaffected witness to the nature of a faithful marriage. For seventy–two years their devotion to one another has been obvious in their mutual love and care for each other—the same care and love they also show each of us. We are particularly grateful for the Peaks’ generosity; their hearts are enormous, and their empathy matched by few.
They have been with us through different pastors, through good times and also some particularly challenging times, and they stand as examples of steadfast Christians who know that the church is more than the building or the pastor or the finances or any individual concerns or disagreements. They embody grace and forgiveness, showing us all what the love of Christ looks like. And though they have slowed down a bit in recent years because of physical limitations, we rejoice that they can still be with us most Sunday mornings. When we experience the firm, resolute grip of John’s hand, the undiminished twinkle in his eyes, and when we likewise see Dorothy’s gracious smile and dignified presence, we all know that we have been loved and appreciated, and we thank God for their ageless faithfulness.