MOULTRIE, Ga. — A woman in Cochran, Ga., had a vision for the Bible to be read across the state of Georgia.
On Sunday, that vision may become reality as groups in all 159 counties read portions of scripture at each of their county courthouses.
Colquitt County’s event will be held at 7:30 a.m. Sunday, July 14, on the Colquitt County Courthouse Square. Colquitt Countians will read Judges 1-Judges 5, which begins after the death of Joshua and describes the conquest of Canaan by the Israelites.
“Several years ago I learned about a 99-county-wide reading of the Bible in the state of Iowa,” Jerri Tuck wrote to local organizers across the state. “As a passionate supporter of the public reading of God’s Word and coordinator of our annual Bible Reading Marathon in Cochran, Ga., since 2004, I was intrigued.”
The task of arranging such a reading across Georgia’s 159 counties seemed impossible, Tuck wrote, but Dianne Bentley, state chairman of the Bible Reading Marathon in Iowa contacted her after searching for other state Bible Reading Marathons.
Bentley told Tuck about a state-wide Bible reading in Iowa on July 14, and Tuck set out to do the same thing in Georgia. As of 8:30 a.m. Tuesday, all 159 counties had signed up, she posted on her Facebook page.
This particular date — 7/14 — was chosen, Tuck said, as a reference to 2 Chronicles 7:14, “If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.”
The event is scheduled for 7:14 a.m., Tuck said, as a continued reference to the scripture. However, local organizers repeatedly said the event here would take place at 7:30 a.m.
The event is similar to the Bible reading on the Square that takes place during Holy Week each year, but the events are not related. Sponsored by the Colquitt County Pastor’s Fellowship, the Holy Week reading involves members of churches across the county reading portions of the Bible 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. the Monday through Friday preceding Easter, so that over the course of the week the whole Bible is read multiple times. The fellowship has sponsored the reading since 2009.