Thursday, December 5, 2013

HAPPY 2OTH ANNIVERSARY, COVENANT!

Cornerstone near the front entrance of Covenant
20 years ago today, Covenant Community held its first public worship service. Over 200 people gathered in the minitorium at Reynolds High School to witness the birth of this new congregation. 

This past Sunday we celebrated Covenant's 20th by having founding pastor Mack Strange come back and speak. His theme: "God is Faithful!" 

It was an incredibly fun day. Mack told story after story of God's faithfulness, both in the founding of Covenant Community, and in his own life. Some of the stories were hilarious -- others made you cry. 

My favorite moment may have been when Mack and I stood on stage together leading the congregation in prayer. I, the current pastor, gave thanks for Covenant's past. Mack, the founding pastor, prayed for Covenant's future. 

Alan and Kellie Armstrong are a couple who were part of the pre-first-service leadership of Covenant
Community. They both went door to door with Mack to help get the church off the ground. Alan led worship and was the youth director.  Here are some memories from Alan: 
As I look back, I believe that our ability to see Jesus in each other unified us with the HOPE that God would create this unique expression of His love in the auditorium at Reynolds high school. This is the genesis of CCUMC.

The love of "family" was at work in the lives of each member … I remember working through difficult "family" issues and loving each other. I remember celebrating "family" events of joy filled times and loving each other. I remember desperately grasping hands in tragedy and loving each other. 

I truly believe that God equipped the family of Covenant Community with brave hearts to love each other in times and in situations that the world would have labeled as too risky to love or to trust. Through this experience, we learned to give each other the Grace God has given us in the midst of mistakes and trials. We eventually learned to celebrate the simple fact that there are no mistakes too big that for God to fix! Jesus has always been at the center of Covenant Community, sharing His Grace and Love! 


So, if you were to ask me of my fondest 20 year old memories I would say it was in the way we corporately loved Jesus and how we loved each other as family.

Early on, it was Mack's evangelical idea to go door to door with informational door hangers about a new faith community forming in the River Ridge area. Kellie and Mack were very comfortable with this method of inviting people to meet with us if they were not currently part of a faith community.  Sharon was "with child" and so I went it alone.This was clearly not my method of "evangelism". I would ring the doorbell & then run away throwing door flyers behind me as I fled screaming "Mack made me do it"! 

Now, while looking in the review mirror is good for reference, nobody ever reached their destination by looking behind. (I think that's in the Bible somewhere!) I believe that the best is yet to come! If we can learn anything from a 20 year celebration of God's passion for His people at Covenant Community it has to be this: Let Jesus drive. Our job is to stick our heads out the window and let the world know how awesome the ride is! This is the great adventure!
Alan, Kellie, Catherine and Collin today

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for all you have done to serve God and Covenant. Who would have ever thought. You are living proof that God can use anyone with a willing heart and some underused talent!

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