News Briefs: Covenanters Making Headlines

Soccer Player’s Injury Leads Him to Mission Trip

MANCHESTER, CT (August 31, 2011) – Josh Valentine was the captain of the Manchester High School soccer team when an injury ended his season, yet it turned out to impact not only his life, but also children in Tijuana, Mexico.

While injured, Valentine reconnected with the youth group at Trinity Covenant Church, where his family attends. He refocused his attention on God.

When 52 members of Trinity participated in its eighth annual mission trip to Tijuana, Mexico, and ministered alongside a church there, Valentine decided to go. He was especially interested because part of the trip involved a soccer outreach.

“It was an opportunity to combine two of the things I really value, playing soccer and serving God,” he told the Manchester Patch website.

Valentine was surprised to learn that many boys are left to wander alone and learn to survive on their own. Many find their way to a cement sports court, where Valentine spent most of his time.

Sharing the gospel with the boys became a highlight for the soccer player, who only recently had begun to pay more attention to his faith. Valentine will again be the captain of his high-school soccer team this year, but he already is looking forward to returning to Mexico next summer.

To read more about Valentine and the trip, click here.

Bread for the World Newsletter Highlights Covenant World Relief

WASHINGTON, D.C. (August 31, 2011) – In its September newsletter, the anti-poverty organization Bread for the World (BTW) lauds the work of Covenant World Relief for its partnering work.

The article notes, “With just over 800 congregations and nearly 300,000 members worldwide, the Evangelical Covenant Church (ECC) is a small church body. But the denomination – a Bread for the World partner – makes a huge impact in its advocacy to end hunger.”

Gary Cook, Bread for the World’s vice president for policy and program, adds, “With the ECC, the connection between faith in Jesus and a commitment to justice is always clear and direct.”

Covenant World Relief partners with BTW on numerous projects and in advocating for the poor. The Covenant’s ministry also funds an internship at BTW. The internships are popular with students from North Park University and North Park Theological Seminary.

To read the entire article, click here.

Rockford Church Makes Park Renovations

MACHESNEY PARK, IL (August 31, 2011) – North Park Covenant Church made needed renovations at Rock Cut State Park because Illinois budget constraints had prevented them from being done.

The congregation has held their church camp at the park for the past 15 years. This year, they decided to rebuild the park’s amphitheater, which had fallen into disrepair. The church installed new benches, a new backdrop, hauled in gravel, and cut down all the grass and weeds.

Church members said they wanted to make the improvements so the entire community could better enjoy the park.

Church Sponsors Unusual CHIC Fundraiser

IRON RIVER, MI (August 31, 2011) – Grace Covenant Church is collecting metal from the community that will be recycled to raise funds for their youth group to attend CHIC 2012.

Collection bins are set up in the church parking lot. The broad variety of items that can be donated range from aluminum cans to grills, lawn mowers, and bed frames.

The youth group will remove larger items from homes, if requested. The fundraiser runs through September 6.

The high-energy triennial Christian youth conference attracts thousands of students from around the world and will be held July 15-20, 2012, at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville. During the week, students gather for small-group Bible study and devotions, large group gatherings with speakers and music, and a plethora of outdoor recreation opportunities.

The event is open to high-school students who are completing grades 9-12 in the 2011-12 school year and are at least 15 years old by September 1, 2012. Students may attend a second time if they are just completing high school in 2012.

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