Adults

Find Yourself.
Find God.
Find Oneness. 

All of us bear God's love into the world in unique ways, and all of us have broken places in need of healing.  You work hard and you often find it difficult to be compassionate with yourself.  You hunger for God in ways you cannot always name, and you do not always know how to go about dealing with that.

At Covenant you find that you do not have to go it alone.

Together, we lean into joy even as we face the hard stuff.
We study the effects of shame and learn how to combat it.  We explore art and spirituality and learn about the Enneagram. We talk about human trafficking, ISIS, violence, sexuality and addiction.  We do centering prayer. We gather with Muslims and Jews to read the poetry of Rumi one night and figure out what we are supposed to do with the book of Ezra the next. 

Join us, and come teach us something new. The collaboration of diverse minds makes the best of conversation. 

Need childcare for a church event?  Email Erin Wise to schedule.

We have many different ways for us to understand God and know a richer life:                                  

Parenting Together: Our Children, Our Youth & Anxiety
Tues., Jan. 21, 28, Feb. 4, 5:30-7pm, Lounge
Join us for teaching and conversation with Abby Surbella, M.Ed., LPC, a therapist who works with children and youth, about what anxiety is, how to manage it, and to find more peace and wholeness for everyone in our families. For info, see Katie Kinnison. RSVP to Katie or to Erin Wise. All are welcome. Childcare and dinner provided.

Fill Your Cup
What If God Is Speaking and We are Too Full to Hear?
classes designed to help us love better and live with more joy

Some time ago, I shifted how I think about my life. I started trying to think of my cup as overflowing instead of just being really busy and/or out of control. I was trying to shift my orientation to one of gratitude. And it really helped. I realized that having so much in my life – so many people to love and so much good to work from which to choose – is gift.
  And...
  And lately I have been realizing something else: if you cup is overflowing, it really matters what is in our cup. When we overflow into the world, what is pouring out? Is it peace and joy and love and the power of the Living God? Or is it anxiety, a sense of scarcity, cynicism, judgment and fear?
  How we manage the stuff of our life – whatever stuff that is – profoundly affects how we live out our calling to bear God’s love and peace and power into the world. Anxious disciples make for an anxious Christianity in a world already reeling from an anxiety epidemic.
  So, Spiritual Development and Adult Learning is offering a series of five classes in which we are invited to consider what is our cups. How do we let go of toxicity and make it possible for Living Water to flow through us and into the world? 

Click on the green text to get a PDF hand out of that session.

Sun. at Noon                                                                                                              Wed. at 7pm
January 5                     What’s In Your Cup?                                                             January 8                                
January 12                   Letting Go of Thoughts and Judgment                                January 15      
January 19                   Letting Go of Fear, Cynicism & Controlling Outcomes     January 22
January 26                   Full Presence and the Moment                                             January 29
February 2                   Ears to Hear                                                                            February 5                  

For more information, see Katie Kinnison

First Session: What’s In Your Cup?
For human beings, our spirituality is enacted in material ways. Always. The ordinary, everyday choices we make shape our loving, our ability to love well.  So, in this session we take a clear-eyed look at what we have chosen to have in our lives and in our own beings. What rolls around inside you on a daily basis? What are the voices in your head?
If you are a cup, what’s inside you?
This session will involve some teaching and some time for individual, private guided reflection.

Second Session: Letting Go of Thoughts and Judgment
      What we do not remake
      plays nostalgic songs on the jukebox of our guts,
      and leads us in the old comfortable temptation.
                                                                Marge Piercy “Doing It Differently”

Letting Go of Thoughts           
We will step back and take a look at our habits of mind and learn how to transform these habits. We will try out some brief meditation practices, some noticing exercises, and a threshold practice that is easy and simple to add into your day.           
Letting Go of Judgment
What is the tone in which you speak to yourself? Can you accept that you are a beautiful mess?
In this session we will take another look at those scripture verses that seem to call us to “be perfect” and we will explore how judging ourselves leads to us judging others. We will learn how to stop pouring mean-spirited energy and a constant flow of criticism into the world.

Third Session: Letting Go of Fear, Cynicism and Controlling the Outcome
In I John we read that “perfect love casts out fear.” And then we read the news or cast our heart around to feel some of the pain in our lives, and we conclude that we have every reason to be afraid. What do we do with fear when it arises? Rather than try to repress it or to numb ourselves out so that we do not feel it, how can we move through the fear and into a way of being that is vastly different?

Fourth Session: Full Presence and the Moment
How can we be more present in our lives, more available to others? What can we do to stop the sense that our lives are whirling past us without offering real satisfaction? In this session we will learn practices that can shift our ways of being in the world. 

Fifth Session:  Ears to Hear
When we have emptied ourselves, purged ourselves of what is in the way, it is possible to hear God in new and deeper ways. What does God sound like? How is it that God speaks to us?
     We will offer specific examples and tools for hearing.

 

 

 

Bible Studies
We invite you to listen for and to hear the Word of God as it is found in and through these words. . . .
You want to be with people who can talk about the bible and love each other at the same time.  We engage the scriptures with passion, faithfulness, intelligence, imagination, wonder and expectancy. The bible only matters to you if it can pull you deeper into a life full of God‘s power and boundless love. Questions?  Contact Katie.

- Sunday Evening Bible Study RESUMES FEB. 2
6:30 pm in Room 120 
1, 2 Kings: led by Dick Campbell
Come join our small group as we read the Bible together. Our mission is to discern what the bible is saying to the people of God then and now. For more information, contact Lisa Wallace.

- Wednesday Bible Studies - 1 Kings
1pm, room 120 or Lounge
Katie Kinnison leads. Wednesday Bible Study: 1 Kings
Wednesdays, 1pm, Lounge
Maybe you’ve never read these stories before or maybe you can’t imagine them connecting with your life. Oh, but these tales resonate with our lives today. King David is old and ill, and his sons are battling for his throne. The nation is divided. Can you imagine what that might be like? Soon we’ll be reading about Solomon and the building of the Temple, and then how this king, gifted with wisdom, makes some foolish choices. How do we know when we have moved off course, outside the way of Love? The fabulous stories of Elijah and Elisha are in this book. How can we survive famine? Who is God willing to save? Join us, as we ask questions about what it means to live faithfully with a God, so far beyond our ken, who continually calls us into relationship.

Centering Prayer
Meets on Wednesdays, 8:15am, Lounge, Katie Kinnison leads

Deep calls to deep at the thunder of my cataracts. . . . 

You cannot fail at this – except fail to show up.  The idea is to allow yourself to be present with the Holy One, to let go of all that gets in the way of our openness to God’s presence within us. This is a kind of meditation or contemplative prayer.

The metaphor Thomas Keating uses to describe what we do is this: imagine you are a diver on the bottom of a river bed, watching boats go by over your head. The boats are your thoughts. Noticing them is not an issue. But when you find that you have swum up and climbed into a boat and are sailing down the river – when you find yourself planning your day or rehearsing a conversation from the day before – ever so gently say your sacred word and fall over the side of the boat and float back down to the bottom. 

The method is this.  Sit with an erect spine in a comfortable position, feet flat on the floor. The idea will be to not move for the twenty minutes of silence. 

Choose a sacred word – God, Jesus, Spirit, Yes, Love – which will serve as a touchstone back to letting go of all that is not simple openness.

Most people close their eyes. When we do this prayer practice together, we use a cd with a couple of minutes of cello music before and after the silence. Take some deep breaths as the music begins, maybe say a prayer or get the kinks out of your neck and shoulders during this part. Settle your body.

When the silence begins, let go. Let go of any planning or figuring out or naming of things. Just be.  When we are able to do this, it is immense spiritual rest, a surrendering into the arms of the Holy One. Sometimes the prayer time seems like nothing but thinking and saying your word, thinking and saying your word…. Then you have had an aerobic workout at surrendering yourself to the Living God. How bad is that? We are practicing kenosis, or “letting go.”

The recommended method is to do this practice for twenty minutes twice a day.

If you have any questions, read Thomas Keating’s Open Heart, Open Mind  -- or see Katie Kinnison for more information on this and other contemplative prayer practices.

Covenant Presbyterian Women Circles
All women of Covenant are automatically part of Covenant Presbyterian Women. Throughout the year, they meet regularly within smaller groups called Circles at different times and places. You are encouraged to join an existing Circle or start a new one! Contact the Circle Leader to join in, and contact Judy Oeder to start a new Circle. Please take the survey at bit.ly/CPWSurvey2016 and help us improve our Circle Offerings to meet the needs of our current and future congregation.

Horizon Bible Study
Love Carved in Stone: A Fresh Look at the Ten Commandments
- Eunice-Lydia Circle: 1st Wednesday: 9:30am in the Lounge
- Miriam Circle: 1st Thursday: 10am in the Lounge
- Elizabeth Circle: 1st Tuesday: 7pm in the 121 
What is the Ten Commandments are not simply a harsh list of what not to do? What if they are a "love letter" from a loving God? Could studying these words lead us into real love, into the restoration of ourselves and our communities? Connecting these words from God that Moses brought to his community with the life of Jesus leads us into the Living Word.

Build deep relationships with other women and deepen your faith as you work through this study prepared especially for Presbyterian Women. For more information, contact Betsy Sebastian, Judy Oeder or Mona Connolly. If you would like to attend the Bible Study Prep held monthly with Katie Kinnison, please contact her.

- Elizabeth Circle - PW Bible Study, fellowship, service. 1st Tues., 7pm, Sept-June, room 121 or Lounge
- Eunice-Lydia Circle - PW Bible Study, fellowship, service, 1st Wed. 9:30am, Sept.-June, Lounge 
- Creative Hearts & Hands, Crafts for mission projects, 1st Mon., 9am, all year, room 120 
- Flower Garden Circle, Flowers for Seeds of Hope Garden for food pantry clients, Meets seasonally as needed
- Miriam Circle, PW Bible Study, fellowship, service, 1st Thur. 10am, Sept.-June,  room 120
- Mission Sewing, Crochet, knit, sew, quilt, Tuesdays 1pm, all year, room 121
- Prayer Shawl Circle, Knitting and praying over shawls for people grieving, suffering, celebrating, 2nd & 4th Fri. 9:30am, all year, Lounge

Men's Fellowship Ministries

- Men's Spirituality, (usually about every 2 weeks) Sundays, 9:30-10:30am, Room 120
“What is spirituality” and “how does spirituality play a part in our lives.” Discuss Brian McLaren's “Naked Spirituality: A Life With God,” beginning with Chapter 12. Join our discussions.  Hope that you ALL can attend and share in our discussion. Contact is Bob Tannehill or just show up!

- Men's Breakfast @ First Watch, Kingsdale, 2nd Sat. each month
Food & fellowship. Contact Allan Kennedy.

- Men Connecting With God
- Men's Breakfast Series 
4th Sat./Month through May, 8am, Lounge
NOTE: No December meeting. Please join us on Sat., Jan. 25, 8am
Please bring something to share. Coffee, pancakes and oatmeal provided. Watch a 20-minute video on an aspect of Christ's life and ministry then discuss it. Questions? Contact Steve St. Martin.

Women’s Theology
1st & 3rd Fridays, 9:30-11:30am, rm 120
We’re continuing our discussion of “Inspired” by Rachel Held Evans. Contact Susan Imel .

Become An Official Member of Covenant Presbyterian Church

At Covenant, you belong when you walk in the door!
And membership matters. Membership is “going all in” and making a commitment to these extraordinary people of Covenant. We have made becoming a member easy because all are welcome. Ours is a God of radical hospitality. We also take membership seriously, believing that we are called to work together in community to bear God’s love into the world. Ours is a God who is transforming both us and the world.

We want becoming a member at Covenant to be easy. We want your membership to be fulfilling and important in your life. To get started or find out more, contact Rev. Katie Kinnison to set up a time to talk with her. The general process: on the first Sunday of the month, a few Elders (members of Session who make congregational decisions) meet with new members to get to know them a little bit and answer questions. On the second Sunday of the month, new members are officially received by the congregation.

Please contact Katie Kinnison.

Click here for a brochure with all the details.

Covenant Community Labyrinth 

A labyrinth is a pathway for prayer, a walking meditation, a gateway to deeper spiritual insight. Following the bricks, we give ourselves something to do and simultaneously free up space inside us. There is more room for Love Itself to speak to us. We can open ourselves more easily to the Living God and to our own deep wisdom.

If you have any questions, please contact Katie Kinnison.

Stephen Ministry
Bear one another’s burdens. . . .

Yes, each of has his or her own load to bear, the challenges and sorrows of life that come to us all. Sometimes, though, our loads become burdens. In order to heal, to thrive, to come all the way alive again, we need some support and encouragement. A Stephen Minister offers unconditional love, an attentive and listening presence, a companion on the journey. Stephen Ministers receive over fifty hours of training. When assigned to a care receiver, the Stephen Minister meets with him or her for one a hour a week and prays regularly for that care receiver.

We are made to love one another, to help each other stand back up, to help one another find our path. Only God can heal us, but God has graciously given us the ability to bear the love and hope of Christ to one another. If you would benefit from having someone by your side these days, contact Katie Kinnison to be assigned a Stephen Minister or for more information.

If you want a Stephen Minister to spend an hour a week listing and offering support, please contact Katie Kinnison.

A New Ministry of Blessing
     A blessing is a gift. We stop and acknowledge that flow of Love that binds us altogether. We speak the words, one to another, and remember that the God of abundant and steadfast love wants good for us.
     Having someone bless us helps us to stop and take note. When someone bears the love of God to us through his or her humanity, Christ is present. We remember we are loved.
     The Stephen Ministers of Covenant are now offering various ways in which we can receive blessings, reminders of God’s gracious love.
House Blessings
A blessing of your home or office can be as thorough or as simple as you request. We can go into each room and pray God’s blessing upon that space or stand in front of your home and offer a benediction of grace and peace.
Personal Blessings
Perhaps you do not need a Stephen Minister to meet with you regularly, but you would like to share your concerns with someone who will hold a sacred space for you and listen to you with loving care. Perhaps you would like a one-time prayer and a blessing: strength for the journey.
To Receive a Blessing
Contact Rev. Katie Kinnison, our Stephen Leader, and she will put you in touch with an available Stephen Minister to schedule your blessing.

Seeds of Hope Garden...
SOH Garden provides organic, fresh vegetables to those in need. Volunteers meet at the garden during the growing season Sundays at 4pm, and Tuesdays and Thursdays at 8am to harvest, plant, weed, water, fertilize, and just get fingers into the soil and enjoy the spectacle of more than 20 different hardy, fruitful plants. The Garden was awarded a grant by the Scotts, Miracle‐Gro company to experiment with a movable row cover system. Scout Gavin Voss, from the Boy Scout Troop at Covenant, built a bulletin board and installed supports for the berry bushes. The computer‐controlled irrigation system was upgraded. Flowers planted by the Covenant Circle headed by Louise Davidson attracts bees for pollination and are given to those who receive vegetables. Volunteer Dick Lewis is a new member at CPC and Master Gardner who contributes his many skills. We work with the leaders of Covenant’s SOS Food Pantry to provide fresh produce to those served by SOS. This mission project is very important and not only has been providing nearly ¾ of a ton of fresh produce to those in need each year but also provides opportunities for Covenant and community members to learn new skills and make a difference in the lives of many. If interested in volunteering, contact Bob Tannehill, Garden Manager.

Opioid Crisis Resource

Annette Franks, M.Ed., LPC, CWC free recovery and educational resources at:
http://www.annettefranks.com/WellnessMaterials.php