President Jimmy Carter returned to his regular saved seat on Sunday at Marantha Baptist Church for mass alongside his wife Rosalynn Carter. It was the first time the former first couple has been back since the 95-year-old former president’s successful brain surgery in November.
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported President Carter needed a little help getting to his reserved seat, but he greeted fellow church members and posed for photos.
President Carter, the nation’s oldest living ex-president, reportedly hadn’t attended Sunday services at his home church in Plains, Ga., since early November, prior to two hospitalizations last month for a brain surgery and a urinary tract infection days later.
Good news. Former President Jimmy Carter and his wife Rosalyn came to their church in Plains this morning. Mr. Carter has endured a number of health issues this year. pic.twitter.com/UNT6o7a0jz— Richard Elliot (@RElliotWSB) December 29, 2019
President Carter had surgery in November to release pressure on his brain and treat a subdural hematoma following a number of falls in 2019.
Most notably, the former president fell twice in October, requiring 14 stitches and a black eye one time and fracturing his pelvis in the other fall.
The former president also survived a bout with cancer in 2015, overcoming the diagnosis despite the disease eventually infecting his brain.
“I assumed, naturally, I was going to die very quickly,” Carter said to a church congregation in 2015. “I found that I was absolutely, completely at ease with death.”
President Carter and his wife Rosalynn still volunteer annually to help build homes with Habitat for Humanity. Earlier this year, President Carter’s determination went viral after he was photographed in October building homes with fresh stitches and a black eye, one day after a fall at his home.
“I fell down and hit my forehead on a sharp edge and I had to go to the hospital,” Carter explained. “And they took 14 stitches in my forehead and my eye’s black, if you noticed. But I had a No. 1 priority and that was to come to Nashville to build houses!”
President Carter and former First Lady Rosaylnn — the longest married first couple in American history — have been volunteering with Habitat for Humanity since the mid-1980s.
The former president has also been a years-long staple at Sunday services at the Marantha Baptist Church in Plains, Ga., where the former president routinely teaches Sunday school.
The president’s previous health issues, which included a broken hip and surgery in May, only temporarily stopped him from teaching on Sundays.
The 95-year-old won’t be teaching Sunday school at Marantha until next year. “President Carter is continuing to recover,” the church’s website says. “We will update his schedule as soon as it is released.”