NOTE FROM PASTOR J R FOR ANNIVERSARY SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 15, 2015

“It takes a Village: And Other Lessons Children Teach Us” is a book written by Hillary Rodham Clinton and published during the time she was first Lady of the United States. In it she focuses on the impact individuals and groups outside and in addition the family, have, for better or worse, on a child’s well-being, and she advocates for a society which meets all of a child’s needs. You would think that this is something almost every segment of society could agree upon but you would be wrong. Immediately, opposition arose to belittle her well meaning efforts.

This Sunday, we will celebrate Covenant’s 34th Anniversary. Since February 1981, Covenant has been advocating and offering spiritual inclusion for the GLBT community into the Christian family. Our vision remains “To be an inclusive community of faith – Offering Hope + Showing Faithfulness + Sharing Joy.” You’d think this is something almost every segment of our Christian society could agree upon, but again you would be wrong. The message of Covenant has been and continues to be one of affirmation and inclusion for the GLBTQ community and for anyone else that has been made to feel they are somehow outside the reaches of God’s unconditional love, forgiveness and acceptance. The ridiculous efforts to thwart Marriage Equality from coming to Alabama this past week, based on religious bias, only demonstrates that the mission of Covenant is still a very relevant one after 34 years. God is still calling us to be part of the spiritual village that it takes to serve our people and the larger village of Greater Birmingham.

So join us this Sunday morning for worship as we celebrate Covenant’s 34 years of ministry. Rev. June Boutwell, Designated Conference Minister of the Southeastern Conference of the United Church of Christ will be our guest speaker. She will be exhorting us with the fact that “God is Still Speaking” and “It ‘Still’ Takes A Village” with gifts of great love to liberate our villagers to live lives of fullness, service and gratitude.”

Her sermon is titled “It Takes A Village” based on the scriptural text “Exodus 18:13-26” and Luke 9:1-6.” You are also invited to stay and share in our anniversary dinner that immediately follows worship.

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