Covenant Matters

Covenant Matters 

October 2019

Pledge Sunday At Covenant

Oct. 27 is Pledge Sunday. In our current sermon series, Gifts of Grace, we are looking at the nine fruits of the spirit. Next Sunday, we will have the opportunity to participate in God’s story through the fruit of generosity. This week, consider your pledge for 2020. Look for a pledge card in the mail or visit our website.

Trunk or Treat Returns Oct. 30! 

Boo! Trunk-or-Treat is Oct. 30, from 5:30 to 7 p.m. in the Covenant parking lot. At this event, kids go from trunk to trunk listening to stories from the Bible, and receiving a treat that goes with the story. To ensure this event is a success, we need you! Volunteers select a story from a list of Bible stories and then get creative decorating their trunk to bring the story to life. Add a bouncy house, photo booth, face painter and FREE hamburgers and hot dogs, and your night is complete! Wear a costume! To learn more or volunteer, contact Deon Wright.

Welcome New Members!

Many of the 50 people who participated in our September Explore Membership class will be introduced in one of the three worship services on Sunday, Oct. 20. Please look for them on the patio to welcome them into our community. If you are interested in learning more about becoming a member, our next Explore Membership class will be in February. To find out more or to sign up now, contact Amy Skaggs.

November 16 is Covenant's Day of Service

Covenant's annual Day of Service is Saturday, Nov. 16, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Sign up to work alongside other Covenant members with one of our four city partners. Covenant members and friends will have the opportunity to learn about what Texas Reach Out Ministry, Austin Voices for Education and Youth, Street Youth Ministry and Community First! are doing in the city and how to take the next steps toward being more involved in these organizations. Find out more and register

Volunteers on Campus Needed! 

Welcoming Volunteers

Are you hospitable? Covenant is looking to grow its team of volunteers who welcome and direct our members and friends on Sunday mornings. We need volunteers for two welcome teams — one as people approach the church from the parking lot and a new team to help direct people as they enter the Fellowship and Education Building. We also need coffee bar volunteers and ushers for our traditional worship services. If you are interested or want to learn more, contact Amy Skaggs.

Slightly Techie Volunteers

Looking for a place to plug in at Covenant? Our Contemporary Worship Service has an opportunity for you! Covenant is in need of people to help run the lyric slides and lighting once a month at the 11:05 a.m. service. Training will be provided and all ages are welcome. You will have the opportunity to work with the pastors while serving the congregation. It's a great way to participate in a worship service. Contact Derek Nafe for more information.

Young Adult Brunch is November 3

Covenant is excited to offer a way for the young adults in our congregation to connect with one another! All young adults (ages 22-35) are invited to brunch on Sunday, Nov. 3, immediately following worship at 12:30 p.m. The brunch will be at the home of Chuck and Lorraine Volk, 5511 Woodview Ave. RSVP here or to Kathryn Sedberry.

Confirmation Sunday is Nov. 10

Come, celebrate with the 21 students who will be confirmed at the 9:30 a.m. Traditional Worship Service on Sunday, Nov. 10. Covenant High School Director Billy Streu has been working with the kids since last February to reach this day, including a retreat in late September. We are excited for the students and their families!

Raising Boys and Girls

Covenant Presbyterian Church along with Laity Lodge Family Camp and Laity Lodge Youth Camp are sponsoring "Raising Boys and Girls" on Friday, Nov. 8, from 6 to 9 p.m. in FE 200. Nationally acclaimed counselors and authors David Thomas and Sissy Goff of the Daystar Counseling Center in Nashville will present this interactive seminar, which is designed for adults to gain a deeper understanding of the unique developmental phases of the kids we raise. Sign up here. To learn more, contact Christy Milam.

Communion Conversation for Kids November 17

Covenant Children and Family Ministry will have its "Communion Conversation" in FE 300 on Sunday, Nov. 17, from 12:15 to 1:30 p.m. During the event, suggested for students in second grade and older, kids will learn more about the meaning of the sacraments, and explore the purpose and importance behind the ritual of communion. Associate Pastor Jon Wasson will serve communion. Lunch will be served so reservations are required by Nov. 13. Please contact Christy Milam for more information.

First Graders to Receive Bibles today!

Covenant's Children and Family Ministry is privileged to partner with families for this special occasion! Today, Sunday, Oct. 20, at the 11:05 a.m. Contemporary Worship Service, all Covenant first grade students will receive Bibles. After the presentation, we encourage your family to stay in worship together to celebrate this special day. We are thankful for this opportunity to celebrate our children with the church community! Contact Christy Milam

Moms in Prayer for Students and Schools 

Is God calling you to worry less and pray more? To stand in the gap for our children and schools? All moms, grandmas, aunts and friends are invited to gather with us in prayer for our students and schools. A group of Moms in Prayer for Murchison Middle School and the Anderson vertical team elementary schools meets every other Tuesday morning at Northwest Hills United Methodist Church. Similar groups exist for other area schools. Contact Jen Kost for details, dates and questions. Find general information here

MoMs Group Meeting in October

The MoMs Group meets on the first and third Monday of the month from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. in the Parlor of the Sanctuary. Please join us for coffee, a snack and fellowship with other moms. On Monday, Oct. 21, we will have our Fall Swap in FE 200. Clear out the clothes and clutter and bring it to pass on to other moms! All remaining items will be donated to Hopefest. For more information, contact Katie McFarlane. Free childcare is available by making a reservation at least 48 hours in advance.

Church Women United is November 1

Church Women United of Austin will gather to celebrate World Community Day on Friday, Nov. 11, at Olivet Baptist Church, 1177 San Bernard St. The charitable action project is monetary donations to the Church World Service Blankets Program. Church Women United is a Christian women’s movement, celebrating unity in diversity and working for peace and justice. Churches throughout Austin take turns hosting. Come for coffee and fellowship at 9:30 a.m., the program begins at 10 a.m. For more information, contact Covenant’s CWU Coordinator Lynn Bell, (512) 968-1425.

Covenant Foundation: Tax Efficient GIving

Covenant Foundation member George Hobgood offers his suggestions for making charitable gifts as beneficial as possible for the recipient in his recent Foundation article. George provides a few options for how to make that goal a reality outlining how to donate appreciated assets or by making some specific stipulations on your IRAs. Read his informative article about the tax-wise ways to give.

It’s Tamale Time Again!

Spice up your holidays with delicious tamales and support Covenant’s long-time mission partner Manos de Cristo. Manos tamale sales help fund year-round programs like the food pantry, clothes closet, ESL classes and the dental clinic. The tamales are $15/dozen with a choice of pork, jalapeno pork, bean (not vegetarian), chicken and vegetarian southwest blend. Order through the Manos website,, and designate Covenant as the pick-up location. There will be a sale table on the patio on Sundays, Nov. 10 through Dec. 1. Order deadline is Monday, Dec. 2, and pick-up is Friday Dec. 6. Contact Bretna Hackert or (512) 284-9010.

Special Prayer Shawl Service Day

Covenant’s Prayer Shawl Ministry will meet on Saturday, Nov. 2, from 10 a.m. to noon in the Sanctuary Parlor to begin our special service project for the year. We are excited to again be making caps and scarves that will be given to clients of Street Youth Ministry, a Covenant mission partner. Please join us if you knit or crochet, want a few pointers, or just enjoy great fellowship. All ages are welcome. For more information, contact Jean Westfall. Hope to see you there!

Volunteers needed for HopeFest!

Austin Voices for Education and Youth, in collaboration with schools and community partners, will serve more than 3,500 people at the 14th Annual HopeFest, on Saturday, Oct. 26, at Northeast (formerly Reagan) High School. Deadline to donate gently used baby gear and infant, child, teen, adult and maternity clothing and shoes is Wednesday, Oct. 23. Volunteers are needed to help sort donated clothing on Wednesday, Oct. 23, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Austin Reconciliation Church (7000 Cameron Rd., across from Northeast High School). Volunteers are needed for event set up on Friday night, Oct. 25, and for two shifts on Saturday, Oct. 26. Sign up here under Austin Voices. Contact Lynn Bell, or (512) 968-1425.

Cuba Ministry Team Commissioning

Covenant’s 40th Cuba Ministry team will be commissioned at the 11 a.m. Traditional Worship Service on Oct. 27 for departure the following week. The team will worship with our sister church in Luyanó on Nov. 3. Team members include Fred Voorhees, Will Wilson, Bill Robbins, Jane Harris, Jeanette Robbins, Mary Jane Parker, Clark Weatherby, Michael Knisely, Thomas Daniel, Travis Mellard, Ruth Dyar, Paulette Kern and Jack Kern. Please pray for travel mercies for their return to Austin Nov. 5. Mark your calendar for a potluck, likely at the home of Brynn and Carl Anderson, on Friday, Nov. 15, to hear a full report.

Fun Way to Support Manos de Cristo

All are invited to the 5th Annual Beer, Wine, Swine and More Un-Gala benefitting Manos de Cristo’s dental, adult education and basic needs programs. The Un-Gala is Thursday, Nov. 7, from 6:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. at Mercury Hall, 615 Cardinal Lane, and will feature food from award-winning RQ SmokeMasters along with draft beer and wine, karaoke and a fine art auction. Vegetarian eats will be available. For information, tickets or sponsorships, click here or contact Diane Riehs (512) 628-4203.

VISIONS Activities Day is November 5

VISIONS Activities Day is Tuesday, Nov. 5. Check the kiosk for the movie title. Games, bingo and puzzles start at 10 a.m. in FE 200, lunch is at noon, and the movie starts at 1 p.m. Guests are welcome. Donations are accepted for lunch and reservations are not required. Contact Sue Gunnels (214) 403-7981.

VISIONS Travel to the Amazon

On Tuesday, Oct. 22, VISIONS Travel will take a tour of the Amazon Fulfillment Center in San Marcos. Find out how your order goes from your computer to your front door. Is it magic?! You will need a picture ID and closed-toed shoes. The group will meet at Covenant at 10:15 a.m. and will stop in Buda for lunch at the Cracker Barrel. (Lunch is on your own.) Cost for the trip is $5. Space is limited to the first 18 people. Call Bonnie Hartmann (512) 695-3481 or Pat Noel (207) 730-2741 for more information and to sign up.

Drinking from a Firehose in India

Join Armchair Travelers on Nov. 7, and listen as Suzanne and John McFarlane share a bit of what drinking from a firehose is like. Hear the first part of their trip to India and Nepal, much of which is centuries older than the New World, but certainly still very much alive and thriving. Visit amazing sites and forts, find out about cremations, stay in palaces, see tigers and enjoy a quick stop at the Taj Majal. We meet in FE 200 at 7 p.m. with refreshments during the intermission. Armchair Travelers is open to anyone who enjoys travel and good fellowship. We hope to see you there. Please invite your friends.

Class to Study "Rising Strong"

Starting Sunday Nov. 3, at 9:30 a.m. in FE 107, the Kingdom Spirituality class will study Brené Brown's book "Rising Strong: How the Ability to Reset Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent." A leading scholar on vulnerability and resilience, Brown provides "a fresh perspective that marries research and humor, offering compassion while delivering thought-provoking ideas about relationships—with others and with oneself,” according to Publisher’s Weekly. All are welcome to attend all or part of the study.

November Chapel Class

Mike Klatt will lead the Chapel Class on Nov. 3 and Nov. 10 at 9:30 a.m. in FE 100. Mike, who has been practicing law in Austin since 1982, will discuss “Then vs. Now: Would We Even Recognize Tocqueville's Snapshot of American Religious Life in the 1830s Today?” French nobleman Alexis de Tocqueville journeyed to America almost 200 years ago and captured his impressions of our country and the way Americans practiced religion in his book, "Democracy in America." Join us for a two-part discussion of Tocqueville's view of American religious practice and whether his observations still apply today in these seemingly fractured times.

Sunday Worship Times

Traditional Service
8:15, 9:30 and 11 a.m.

Contemporary Service
11:05 a.m.
Fellowship Hall

Office Hours
Covenant Hall is open Monday to Thursday from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Friday from 8 a.m. to noon.

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