Sunday, June 29, 2008

What Happened in The Place You May or May Not Know the Way To

This past week was quite an eventful one in the life of the church. Here at Covenant we had a successful VBS program with over 60 kids and tons of adult and teenaged volunteers. In San Jose, California, the 218th General Assembly met to discern God’s will for the church. The secular press has picked up on one of the issues discussed – the proposed removal of G-6.0106b (the “fidelity and chastity” amendment) and replace it with a new Amendment B, one which ties ordination decisions more closely to assent to the ordination vows currently in the church’s Book of Order without singling out a sexual conduct standard.

While that proposal will certainly be discussed, debated, and hopefully God’s will discerned in the coming weeks and months, the one hot topic issue the press picked up is certainly not the only thing that happened at G.A. Here are a few highlights. The Assembly:
• Along with the new moderator, Bruce Reyes-Chow, elected a new Stated Clerk, Gradye Parsons (the previous associate stated clerk)
• Initiated a process to revise the Heidelberg Catechism (one of the confessions which is a part of our constitution) based on concerns about translation mistakes
• Received a report that the ‘Mission Initiative: Joining Hearts and Hands’ (an initiative to renew the church for mission) had raised over $33 million of the $40 million goal
• Rejected an overture (which originated from Shenandoah Presbytery) to create a fifth special offering to fund mission personnel
If you’re interested in learning more, check out the denomination’s website,

Just as we have been grateful for the hard work of those who made our own week at church a success, let us be thankful for the efforts, time, and faith offered by the commissioners and advisory delegates.


Monday, June 23, 2008


As I mentioned in worship yesterday, our General Assembly has elected a new moderator - Bruce Reyes-Chow. I for one am thrilled that he has been elected and I can't wait to see what the next two years bring.

If you're interested in learning more about him, in following his journey, you can! Check out his blog.

As the kids say, woot!

Saturday, June 14, 2008

an awesome amusement park adventure

This past Thursday 13 youth, 3 parents, and 1 me gathered at 7am in the church parking lot and headed over the mountain and kept going East until we arrived at Busch Gardens in Williamsburg. We spent the whole day there, getting back to Staunton a little before 10pm. Quite a busy, crazy day.

And quite a wonderful day. I'm not one for riding the rides (my motion sickness really puts a damper on that) but I loved being around this great group of young people who were great with each other and with the old folks (that includes me) who were hangers on.

I've said before that the youth of our church inspire me and warm my heart and it's true. It's not just the big moments but little ones like those I experienced on Thursday. The kids laughing with each other, making sure no one gets left behind, even offering to carry bags for those adult-types.

Yes, the trip was long, yes, I got a little sunburn on my nose, and yes, I spent most of the day sitting, waiting for everyone else while they rode the rides. But you know, I wouldn't trade that day for much of anything.