‘Faithful in Service’ Campaign Hits $1 Million Goal

CHICAGO, IL (August 30, 2018) – The “Faithful in Service, Further in Mission” campaign that honors retiring ECC president Gary Walter has reached its goal of raising $1 million to fund ministry initiatives, it was announced today.

“The campaign has been a way of saying ‘thank you’ to president Walter for his 27 years of denominational leadership,” said Curt Peterson, a longtime colleague who previously served as executive minister of Serve Globally and now oversees church mission advancement. “He has made a significant impact as a pastor and denominational leader on shaping the character, scope, and growth of the Covenant.”

The campaign was named for Walter’s oft-repeated desire to be “found faithful while going deeper in Christ and further in mission.”

It was seeing the impact that Walter has had on advancing ministry while living out that desire that led people to so readily contribute to the campaign, said Gayle Gilreath, director of advancement strategy. “It has been a very special privilege to meet with so many Covenant folks from across the country to hear them share their appreciation for Gary’s service as well as devotion to the future of the Covenant through their gifts of prayers, support, and generosity to the campaign.”

Walter began serving at Covenant Offices in 1991, when he became director of church planting. He subsequently served as the executive minister of church growth and evangelism before being elected ECC president in 2008.

He previously had served in various capacities at Village Covenant Church in Azusa, California; Newport Covenant Church in Bellevue, Washington; and Clairemont Covenant Church in San Diego, California.

“I’m humbled by this wonderful gift,” said Walter. “The Covenant has always had room for an innovative edge in its ministry, and this gift will help position leaders to build on our current momentum in making a kingdom difference in the lives of real people in real places here and around the world.”

In a recent interview, Walter reflected on the blessings of the church and its future mission. He officially retires tomorrow.

The funds raised through the initiative will be distributed under the guidance of new president John Wenrich.

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Stan Friedman is the news and online editor for the Covenant Companion and is grateful for the opportunity to serve in a job that combines his newspaper and pastoral ministry experience. He has been to 15 Bruce Springsteen concerts in four cities and listened to “Thunder Road” an average of at least once a day for 41 years.

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