Briefs: Rebuilding Homes, Swedish Merger, Sankofa

Covenant World Relief Sends Disaster Relief to Thailand

NAM KHE, THAILAND (June 1, 2012) – Covenant World Relief (CWR) is responding with assistance to help rebuild homes in the village where powerful storms during this monsoon have ripped the roofs off buildings and caused other damage.

The funds will be used to reconstruct the homes to withstand future storms and “help to address the long-term need of equipping all houses in Nam Khe village with equipment appropriate for keeping them safe from storms in the future,” says James Gustafson, an Evangelical Covenant Church missionary working in the area.

Gustafson adds that all of the materials will be purchased locally to further strengthen the local economy. Funds will be administered through the Sustainable Development Research Foundation, a Covenant ministry partner.

Click here to contribute to CWR’s disaster relief efforts.

Covenant Representatives Witness Historic Swedish Union

STOCKHOLM, SWEDEN (June 1, 2012) – Two representatives of the Evangelical Covenant Church (ECC) were on hand when three denominations, including the Swedish Mission Church, officially merged earlier this month.

The Swedish Mission Church, a sister denomination of the ECC, merged with the Union Baptist and United Methodist Church bodies. The new denomination, temporarily named Common Future, has roughly 70,000 members in 900 communities.

Methodist pastor Lass Svensson was elected president. Ministers also were commissioned and ordained during the celebration.

Bertil Svensson, coordinator of international affairs, said, “I hope the new church could, with sister churches in other countries, have a global impact. We also hope that the new church will really inspire our Swedish local congregations to more effective achievement of the Christian mission in the local level.”

Evangelical Covenant Church representatives attending the ceremony were Curt Peterson, executive minister of the Department of World Mission, and Leonid Regheta, a Covenant missionary.

Other leaders attending the ceremony included representatives from India, Nicaragua, Congo, Liberia, Azerbaijan, Lithuania, Netherlands, Syria, Ecuador, China, Japan and Russia.

The first formal meeting on the merger, held in Stockholm June 4 last year, adopted the necessary charter and elected the executive committee as well as other leaders. Click here to read a previously published story on the gathering. The youth ministry of the three denominations had already joined forces in 2008.

Sankofa Journey Set for August 2-5

CHICAGO, IL (June 1, 2012) – Registration is now open for the next Sankofa journey, which will be held August 2-5.

Sankofa is a cross-racial prayer journey that seeks to assist participants move toward a righteous response to the social ills related to racism. This interactive experience explores historic sites of importance in the Civil Rights movement and sites of oppression and inequality for people of color.

The registration form is available here.

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  1. Since two of the three uniting bodied are historically pedobaptist, will the merged church practice infant baptism?

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