About Our Church

ABOUT OUR CHURCH

Covenant Presbyterian Church ascribes to the historical Great Ends of the Church, which are as follows:

The proclamation of the gospel for the salvation of humankind;

The shelter, nurture, and spiritual fellowship of the children of God;

The maintenance of divine worship;

The preservation of the truth;

The promotion of social righteousness; and

The exhibition of the Kingdom of Heaven to the world.

WE BELIEVE… The Church is the body of Christ. Christ gives to the Church all the gifts
necessary to be his body. The Church strives to demonstrate these gifts in its life as a community in the world (1 Corinthians 12:27-28):

The Church is to be a community of faith, entrusting itself to God alone, even at the risk of losing its life.

The Church is to be a community of hope, rejoicing in the sure and certain knowledge that,
in Christ, God is making a new creation. This new creation is a new beginning for human
life and for all things. The Church lives in the present on the strength of that promised
new creation.

The Church is to be a community of love, where sin is forgiven, reconciliation is
accomplished, and the dividing walls of hostility are torn down.

The Church is to be a community of witness, pointing beyond itself through word and work to the good news of God’s transforming grace in Christ Jesus its Lord.

OUR COMMITMENT TO OPENNESS… In Jesus Christ, who is Lord of all creation, the Church seeks a new openness to God’s mission in the world. In Christ, the triune God tends the least among us, suffers the curse of human sinfulness, raises up a new humanity, and promises a new future for all creation. In Christ, Church members share with all humanity the realities of creatureliness, sinfulness, brokenness, and suffering, as well as the future toward which God is drawing them. The mission of God pertains not only to the Church but also to people everywhere and to all creation. As it participates in God’s mission, the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) seeks:

A new openness to the sovereign activity of God in the Church and in the world, to a more radical obedience to Christ, and to a more joyous celebration in worship and work;
A new openness in its own membership, becoming in fact as well as in faith a community of women and men of all ages, races, ethnicities, and worldly conditions, made one in Christ by the power of the Spirit, as a visible sign of the new humanity;

A new openness to see both the possibilities and perils of its institutional forms in order to ensure the faithfulness and usefulness of these forms to God’s activity in the world; and,

A new openness to God’s continuing reformation of the Church ecumenical, that it might
be more effective in its mission.

–all italicized parts come from the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) Book of Order.

CHURCH GOVERNANCE

The church is governed by presbyters, that is, ruling elders and teaching elders. Ruling elders are chosen by the congregation to strengthen and nurture the church’s faith and life. Teaching elders are charged with equipping the people of God for their ministry and witness. To this end, Covenant Presbyterian Church (CPC) is governed and guided by these offices elected by the congregation;

THE SESSION: The Session is made up of 12 ruling elders who are elected and ordained by the congregation to give oversight to the whole of the ongoing work and ministry of CPC. It is also made up of 1 teaching elder (the church pastor) who serves as moderator of the Session, as well as the Clerk of Session, who is an elder appointed to the task of recording all proceedings, keeping all church records, and making sure that all decisions and actions of the Session are in accordance with the Book of Order of the PC(USA). The Session oversees the worship, mission, educational program, financial and stewardship responsibilities, staffing, maintenance of the church facility, relationships with the larger Presbyterian body as well as ecumenical and interfaith relations, and the proper care and nurture of all church members and friends through its appropriate standing
committees. The Session holds regular meetings once a month.

THE DEACONS: In accordance with the Apostolic Council of the early New Testament Church as witnessed to in the Book of Acts, there is a Board of Deacons the members of which are elected and ordained to oversee the care and nurture of the congregation and its members. The Board of Deacons at Covenant Presbyterian Church does this work through the division of the congregation into “flocks.” Each Deacon shepherds a flock for the purpose of making available to all members an additional contact point in which needs, concerns, joys and celebrations may be made known to the pastor, church leaders and the congregation as a whole (where appropriate). The Board of Deacons also maintains a benevolence account, funded by church members through special periodic offerings throughout the year, for the purpose of helping members who find themselves in
financial need, as well as other friends to find themselves at our door and in need. Use of these funds requires conversation and agreement between the pastor and moderator of the Board of Deacons. The Deacons also give oversight to the church fellowship committee, which plans and assists in most CPC fellowship events.

THE BOARD OF TRUSTEES: CPC elects three Trustees, serving staggered terms of office, for the purpose of dealing with the important legal/property issues that may arise in the life of the church from time to time. For instance, the purchase or sale of property requires that there are Trustees who have been given the authority by the congregation to be the legal agents of CPC. In such cases as these issues need to be addressed, the congregation convenes as a corporate entity for the purpose of approving recommendations and then authorizing the Trustees to carry out its intentions.