E-votional and E-vents


E-votional and Events July 9-15

What an amazing start to VBS!  We have had the largest turnout in years, with 94 people yesterday and 95 today.  About 30 of these are leaders and the other 65 are kids--incredible!  

So what caused the growth?

Our hunch is that the growth is due to two key decisions this year:

First, having VBS the week after the Fourth of July, giving families a chance to relax a bit from the busy-ness of the school year ending, enjoy the holiday, and be ready for something new.

Second, we think the growth is tied to the planning team's addition of online registration.  It seems that many new families found our registration link through friends sharing it on Facebook in the Pavilion community.  We are thrilled that adding this online option has spurred such growth.

As we welcome and serve these 65 kids, we give thanks for the wonderful opportunities we have to plant seeds of faith and water seeds already planted.

Please hold our leaders in prayer--for us to be filled with energy, intelligence, imagination, and love each day as we serve in Jesus' name.

Events this Week:
Covington’s 2019 VBS Roar: Life Is Wild, God Is Good! Will continue through Friday morning, July 12.
Sunday, July 14, 10am:Worship and a Celebration of Vacation Bible School

Journey With Us In Learning About The Underground Railroad
At VBS this summer we’ll be learning how God brought the Hebrew people out of slavery in Egypt and led them to freedom in the Promised Land.  Building on this Biblical story, after VBS we invite you to join us to learn about the Underground Railroad, with a more recent story of God leading people out of slavery in our own country.
Parents and children, along with adults of all ages, are invited to join us on Sunday mornings, July 14 and 21, at 9am in the Sturm wing to hear Barb Crane read aloud the children’s book Meet Addy.  This fictional story takes place in the year 1864. After Addy’s father and brother are sold to another owner, she and her mother escape from their life as slaves in North Carolina and journey on the Underground Railroad to freedom in Philadelphia.  Then at the end of July we’ll visit a local church that was part of the Underground Railroad, climbing to their steeple to see where people hid from bounty hunters on their journey north to Canada.

Join us beginning Sunday, July 14, 9am in the Sturm Wing for this exciting and engaging series for all ages.  Refreshments will be provided.


E-votional and E-vents June 17-24 

"What are you doing here?" 

God is the one who asks this question to Elijah in the wilderness of Horeb.  He is fleeing Queen Jezebel, who has sworn revenge and vowed to take his life.  Deep in the mountains, alone in a cave, Elijah hears God ask, "What are you doing here?"

We'll consider this story from Elijah's life on Sunday, along with Elijah's answer.  Today I invite you to think about how you might answer this question if God were to ask you what YOU are doing.

It's so easy to get bogged down in doing what we do, or have always done, or think we should do, that we forget to consider the purpose behind what we do.

So I invite you to pause a few times this week in various places and situations, to ask yourself God's question to Elijah, considering your purpose in relation to the places you go and the people with whom you spend time.  

When you arrive at that meeting for work--what are you doing?
When you serve breakfast to your kids before they get on the bus--what are you doing?
As you pay bills--what are you doing?
When you climb into the tractor or get on the mower--what are you doing?
As you go for a walk or run--what are you doing?
As you talk with family or friends--what are you doing?

This invitation is to go deeper than the literal answer to "what are you doing?" and dig into the purpose behind your presence, your actions, your role.

In daily situations this week, look for the purpose behind what you do.

So friends, what are YOU doing here?

Scripture for Sunday: Elijah 19:1-15 

Events this Week:
Today, June 17: Register your family (kids entering kindergarten through those just completing 7th grade) for VBS  online at https://bit.ly/2Y6Wsyq While we will still accept registrations at the door, preregistration helps ensure we can honor any special requests and have enough volunteer leaders for a fun, safe, and inspiring week.  Join us for this great week at Covington!  VBS is July 8-12, 2019, 9am-11:45am.
Thursday, 7pm: Session
Saturday, 9am:VBS Decorating
Sunday, 10am:Worship
11am: Mission and Service Committee meeting



E-votional and E-vents June 3-10
This past Saturday our family had the amazing experience of visiting Annunciation Orthodox Church on East Avenue in Rochester.  It was their Greek Fest, and as part of the event, Father Angelo was offering church tours.  On the spur of the moment we joined the tour, uncertain of how long we'd last with two young children.

Yet as we stepped through the doors, our family took in a collective breath of  astonishment.  Even the narthex was filled with the stunning beauty of elaborate wood carvings, intricate mosaics, and sand for placing lit candles. A sense of the holy pervaded the space, like an invitation into God's house. 

Father Angelo asked us to share our faith background and I smiled to myself when all three separate groups said they were Presbyterian.

As we stood together in the narthex, our host explained that in Orthodox Christianity, the narthex has spiritual significance as the place where worship begins, where people transition from the world outside and into the sanctuary, which they consider to be the "Temporal Kingdom of Heaven"--meaning the kingdom of heaven on earth.  As our children's quiet awe and miraculously careful listening for a full 45 minutes displayed, the sense of the holy was palpable.

As we entered the sanctuary, the visual wonder continued, with stained glass and glittering mosaics depicting the Annunciation, the Baptism of Jesus, Palm Sunday, Easter, and Pentecost, among many other scenes.  Father Angelo described the meaning and significance of the space, the worship service, and customs of the Greek Orthodox Church, explaining that the liturgy would be recognizable for 2nd and 3rd Century Christians because it has changed very little since then.

He showed us the gold-encased gospels for reading in worship and explained the historical significance of the gold and the parallels in their service to ancient Jewish worship in the Temple.  He described the purpose of the elaborate icons: recognizing that everyone's mind wanders during worship, the sacred art was intended to guide people to mentally wander toward God, so their thoughts might be of the Holy One rather than the meanderings of everyday life.

Then he described their practice of Communion.  As he spoke we had a truly shudder-worthy moment, as a woman behind us (a late-comer and notably not one of the Presbyterians), said aloud in response, "that's gross."   I hoped our host had not heard.  Our kids did, of course, and it provided an opportunity afterwards to talk about how not to be a guest.  But it was a painful reminder that we as a society have learned problematic ways of responding to difference. As guests in someone else's spiritual house, we are called to respond not with judgment but curiosity and appreciation.  Happily, when Father Angelo asked Lydia (the youngest in the tour) what she thought of their practice of Communion, she said, "cool!"  Oh that we might all have such a spirit.

Excluding that one painful moment, our visit to the church strengthened my faith and filled me with gratitude for being part of this broad family of Christian faith.  What a joy to be Presbyterian (distinctively curious people who value learning) AND part of this big family of believers with such great variety in the way we worship and show our commitment to Christ. 

As we approach Pentecost this Sunday, may we remember that we are believers together, Orthodox, Catholic, and Protestant, worshipping the same Lord in so many different languages and ways.  Yes, some will criticize as in that first Pentecost crowd, where a few sneered, saying the believers were "filled with new wine," but mostly the hearts and minds of those who are open--adults and children alike--will be stirred to faith.

Thanks be to God.

For a glimpse of the sanctuary at Annunciation Orthodox Church visit: Annunciation.  

Scripture for Sunday: Acts 2:1-21

Still need to register for VBS?  Sign your family up by June 17 to ensure that we can honor any special requests: https://bit.ly/2Y6Wsyq or with a paper form, available in the church narthex.

Events this Week:
Saturday, 2pm: Children's Day rehearsal at the church
Sunday, 9am: Sunday School
10am: Children’s Day—a special service led by our Sunday School children and teachers.

The Good Shepherd Challenge
The Covington Session challenges YOU to be part of our Good Shepherd Challenge, now through June 16.  Here’s what to do:
1.    Learn Psalm 23 by heart in the translation/ language of your choice.
2.    Tell Pastor Laura when you have the psalm memorized.
3.    Then add a sheep cutout to our bulletin board (this sheep represents you).
4.    Several sponsors have generously promised to donate $1 for every person who learns Psalm 23.
5.    Our goal: To raise $120—enough to donate a sheep through Heifer International.  For information on their mission visit: heifer.org

Monday, April 15, 2019: Connecting Word to World
By Rev. Laura Fry

I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth takes its name.  I pray that, according to the riches of his glory, he may grant that you may be strengthened in your inner being with power through his Spirit, and that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith, as you are being rooted and grounded in love.  I pray that you may have the power to comprehend, with all the saints, what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, so that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.
Now to him who by the power at work within us is able to accomplish abundantly far more than all we can ask or imagine, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen.
Ephesians 3:14-21 in the New Revised Standard Version

This week we journey through the shadows, telling stories of betrayal, arrest, and death.  Yet amid this darkness, there are moments of radiant light: the light of service, as Jesus washed his disciples’ feet; the light of Communion, as Jesus shared the Last Supper; the light of love, as Jesus gave his life to set us free.  This is a holy week, and a somber one, yet it is a week filled to overflowing with the love of our Lord.

When Paul prayed for the Ephesians, he boldly invited God to give them power to comprehend God’s love. In the events of Holy Week, we glimpse the breadth and length and height and depth of God’s love.  Paul also reminded them of God’s power, which is able to accomplish far more than anything we can imagine.  

Today pray the words of Ephesians 3:14-21 slowly and carefully for someone you hope will come to know God’s love more deeply…this person might be a family member, a friend, a church member, or neighbor.  

Lift up this person in prayer, asking that this week might be holy for them, a time when they are strengthened, rooted, and grounded in love, filled with power to comprehend the vast reaches of God’s love for them.

Entrust this person to God’s care, giving thanks for God’s mighty power at work in their life.             

Scripture for Sunday: Luke 24:1-12 (Sunrise) and John 20:1-18 (10am service)

Events this Week:
Thursday, 6pm:Maundy Thursday service at York Baptist Church, with Communion. 
Thursday, 6pm:Maundy Thursday service, beginning with a potluck dinner, at First Presbyterian Church in East Avon.
 Friday, 7pm: Good Friday service at Covington United Presbyterian Church—a contemplative service of Scripture, music, and prayer. 
Sunday,7:30 am: Sunrise service with Communion, followed by a breakfast of fruit and muffins in the Assembly Room.  No Sunday School today.                                                       
10 am: Our main service of worship for Easter 






Monday, April 8, 2019: Intergenerational Activity

“Christ is just like the human body—a body is a unit and has many parts; and all the parts of the body are one body, even though there are many. We were all baptized by one Spirit into one body, whether Jew or Greek, or slave or free, and we all were given one Spirit to drink. Certainly the body isn’t one part but many.”
1 Corinthians 12:12-14 in the Common English Bible

Name the Gift
By Rev. Brandi Wooten

We are “one body with many members.” This makes sense to us doesn’t it? This analogy aptly describes how each person is different, yet we are all part of the family of God. But this gets hard to remember in practice. When someone disagrees with us over the meeting or dinner table, when a child gets “too loud” in church, when things aren’t done the way we would have done them… remembering that we are all one body with many different gifts and skills and perspectives gets hard.

For today’s activity, I invite you to take some time to name and honor the gifts of those in your family. Write the name of each family member on the center of a paper. Then pass the papers around and as they get to each person, write or draw a picture of the skills or talents that person has. When everyone has had an opportunity to write something on everyone’s paper, count all the different gifts that are in your family.

Scripture for Sunday: Psalm 118:19-29 and Luke 19:29-40

Events this Week:
Monday, 6:30pm: Spring Clean Up at Church—volunteers welcome!  
Tuesday, 7-8pm: Book Club at the manse
Wednesday, 7pm: Sunday School meeting
Sunday, 9am: Sunday School
10am: Worship for Palm Sunday

Holy Week Services:
Thursday, April 18, 6pm:Maundy Thursday service at York Baptist Church, with Communion. 
Friday, April 19, 7pm: Good Friday service at Covington United Presbyterian Church—a contemplative service of Scripture, music, and prayer. 

Sunday, April 21, 7:30 am: Sunrise service, followed by breakfast                                                                                10 am: Our main service of worship for Easter


Monday, April 1, 2019: Connecting Word to World

“For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor rulers,
nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth,
nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God 
in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
Romans 8:38-39 in the New Revised Standard Version

Intersections
By Rev. Laura Fry

“Intersection” is the word we use to describe a place where two roads come together.  Intersections are all around us: both the literal ones we encounter on city streets and country roads as well as the figurative intersections that occur when our faith intersects with our experiences, when we make a connection, or have an “aha” moment.

At the heart of Christian faith is yet another intersection: the cross, that place where two pieces of wood were joined together and became the ultimate point of connection between death and life, between God and humankind.

Although the news is filled with stories of death, violence, hunger, conflict, and racism, our faith proclaims the promise of the cross: that these forces have not and will not win.  The power of God is continually at work, transforming hatred into love and death into life.

Spend some time today praying for a part of our world that has been on your heart and mind recently. Through the news that place has intersected with your life, stirring compassion and causing you to care about another community.

Let this sense of connection lead you into prayer for God’s mighty work of transformation.  Claim the promise of the cross: that death does not get the final word after all—not in New Zealand or Venezuela, Israel or Palestine, LA or DC, the United Kingdom or the United States.  Nothing, absolutely nothing, can separate any of us from God’s love.

Scripture for Sunday: Isaiah 43:16-21 and John 12:1-8

Events this Week:
Sunday, 9am: Sunday School
9:05am:VBS Planning Team meeting in the Rose Room
9:30am: Dining Room Team meeting in the Dining Room
10am: Worship and the Sacrament of Communion
Please bring a non-perishable item for the York/Pavilion Food Pantries
11am: Join us for a “Building a Caring Community” conversation with Jerry Alonzo, a retired Livingston County judge, who will be sharing about his experience volunteering with asylum-seekers along the US/Mexico Border.
Monday, April 8, 6:30pm: Outdoor Spring Clean Up at Church—volunteers welcome!  Rain Date: April 15.
Tuesday, April 9, 7pm: Book Club--we're reading chapters 1-4 in How to Talk So Kids Will Listen and Listen So Kids Will Talk. Join us!

Services for Holy Week and Easter

Sunday, April 14, 10am: Palm Sunday
Thursday, April 18, 6pm:Maundy Thursday service at York Baptist Church, with Communion. 
Friday, April 19, 7pm: Good Friday service at Covington United Presbyterian Church—a contemplative service of Scripture, music, and prayer. 
Sunday, April 21, 7:30 am: Sunrise service, followed by breakfast                                                                                                                              10 am: Our main service of worship for Easter 



Monday, March 25, 2019: Connecting Word to World

Then Jesus demanded, “What is your name?” 
And he replied, “My name is Legion, 
because there are many of us inside this man.” 
Then the evil spirits begged him again and again 
not to send them to some distant place.
 Mark 5:9-10 in the New Living Translation

Prayers for Mental Illness
By Rev. Kevin Hershey

Our culture continues to be one that seems to understand and empathize with physical illness, while those infected with mental illnesses are too often seen as “weak,” instead of ill.  We send them to “distant places” where they can deal with their “issues” privately, quietly, and often with little outside support.

Today, pray for those struggling with mental illness, chemical dependencies, emotional disorders, diagnoses that keep people from fully engaging in their lives.  

Pray for those filled with voices of sorrow, fear, anger, or a multitude, that overcome their true voice, hidden inside.  Pray for the freedom of their own true voice above all others, and for God’s wellness to enter in.  

And pray for a culture that values them, treats their illness as genuine, and keeps them a central part of our community.

Scripture for Sunday: 2 Corinthians 5:16-21

Events this Week:
Monday, 7pm: Property Managers
Thursday, 7pm:Session
Sunday, 9am: Sunday School
10am: Worship



E-votional and E-vents March 18-25

“I give you a new commandment, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another.  By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another."
John 13:34-35 in The New Revised Standard Version


Love Lists

Jesus tells us that those who follow him will be known by our love… 
love for God, 
for others, 
for ourselves,
even for people we’re upset with!

Today, get together with some people you love, and make
“Love lists.”  List out some of the following, together:

·     Who do you know that loves you?

·     Who do you love?

·     Who are you trying to love, but it’s hard?

·     What’s an example of love that you’ve seen love today?  This week?

--Rev. Kevin Hershey


The Heart of Lent Event
Thursday, March 21, 5:30-7pm: Join us for our second “Heart of Lent Event” at Covington.  This intergenerational evening will explore the Christian season of Lent. This event is designed to include children, teens, and adults as well as families, couples, and singles. We’ll be building the city of Jerusalem and resurrection gardens—don’t miss this fun, interactive evening!  Please bring a dish to pass. 

Scripture for Sunday: Isaiah 55:1-9 and Psalm 63:1-8

Events this Week:
Tonight, Monday, 7pm: Mission and Service Committee Meets
Sunday, 9am: Sunday School
10am: Worship and "March Milk Madness"--bring a gallon of milk to donate to the Pavilion Food Pantry!
11am: Chicken BBQ Planning Meeting--if you're part of the BBQ Committee or would like to help with planning, please join us for this organizational meeting after worship.
Monday, March 25, 7pm: Property Managers






E-votional and E-vents March 11-18

He left there and returned to his hometown. His disciples came along.  On the Sabbath, he gave a lecture in the meeting place. 
He made a real hit, impressing everyone. “We had no idea he was this good!” they said.  “How did he get so wise all of a sudden, get such ability?”  But in the next breath they were cutting him down: “He’s just a carpenter—Mary’s boy. We’ve known him since he was a kid. We know his brothers, James, Justus, Jude, and Simon, and his sisters. Who does he think he is?” 
They tripped over what little they knew about him and fell, sprawling. And they never got any further.  Jesus told them, “A prophet has little honor in his hometown, among his relatives, on the streets he played in as a child.” 
Jesus wasn’t able to do much of anything there—he laid hands on a few sick people and healed them, that’s all. He couldn’t get over their stubbornness. He left and made a circuit of the other villages, teaching.
Mark 6: 1-6 in The Message

Take a moment to consider a time when you have gotten “stuck” in a viewpoint of someone or something and no matter what new data or information has been presented to you, you have remained unwilling to budge.  (“They tripped over what little they knew about him and fell, sprawling.  And they never got any further”).  
Prayerfully ask God if and when your disbelief has created a barrier to  God’s healing touch being experienced by those in need. (vs. 4-6)    
 --Rev. Sue Thaine

Scripture for Sunday: Luke 5:1-11


Our Next Book Club Selection:
How to Talk So Kids Will Listen and Listen So Kids Will Talk has been postponed.  A new date (in early April) will be coming soon.

Events this Week:
Sunday, March 17, 9am: Sunday School
9:05am: VBS Planning Team meets
10am: Worship
Monday, March 18, 7pm: Mission and Service Committee Meets

Thursday, March 21, 5:30-7pm: Join us for our second “Heart of Lent Event” at Covington .  This intergenerational evening will explore the Christian season of Lent. This event is designed to include children, teens, and adults as well as families, couples, and singles. Please bring a dish to pass. For more information or to let us know you're planning to attend, contact Rev. Laura Fry, 991-8789 covingtonpastor@gmail.com.


Sabbath for Those Who Think They Don’t Have Time for Sabbath

Jesus knows we need time to rest and to be with him. But with so much going on in our busy lives, who has time for real sabbath? You do. Really! Come, join us for a time of remembering the importance of sabbath, of learning new perspectives and techniques for weaving sabbath moments into your everyday life, and of engaging in the holy and healing practice of sabbath. 
The details: Saturday, April 6, 9am- 4pm, with other Valley Neighbors churches at Asbury Camp and Retreat Center on Silver Lake. Our retreat leader, and author of the invitation above, is pastor, counselor, and New Worshipping Community founder, Rev. Kevin Hershey. 
The cost is $35, and if there are 6 or more people from Covington attending, our per-person cost decreases to $30. Childcare is also being offered onsite, at $10/1 child, $15/2 children, and $20/3 or more children from a family. Registration forms (one per adult) are available at church or by emailing covingtonpastor@gmail.com and are due with payment Sunday, March 24, 2019.

E-votional and E-vents February 25-March 4

This Sunday is the "Transfiguration of the Lord," when we journey up the mountain with Jesus and glimpse an amazing revelation of who he really is.  The disciples see a cloud descend, and hear a voice saying, "This is my Son, my Chosen, listen to him."

This week I invite you to consider,
What helps you listen to Jesus?  

Then choose one of these things you name to do this week, intentionally opening yourself to the voice of God, and listening for how Jesus may be speaking to you.

Bonus: If you're willing, please let me know what helps you listen to Jesus--I'd love to be able to share your insights in worship this week (no names attached) as a way to encourage and build one another up in our ability to listen.

May God's grace and peace be with you as you listen for the voice of Jesus, speaking this week, to you.

Scripture for Sunday: Luke 9:28-43

Events this Week:
Thursday, 7pm:Session
Sunday, 9am: Sunday School
10am: Worship
A Service of Witness to the Resurrection for Gary McIntyre will be at Covington on Sunday, March 3, 2019, 2pm.
Monday, March 4, 7pm:Property Managers

Wednesday, March 6, 2019, 6pm: Ash Wednesday service at York United Presbyterian Church, followed by a simple supper in the church dining room.  Please let Laura Fry know if you are able to bring bread or butter (we'll need a total of 4 loaves and 2 sticks of butter).

Upcoming: 
Sunday, March 10, 2-4pm:Community Youth Group meets at First Presbyterian, Honeoye Falls, as TedX presenter Dianna Paige shares about her experiences with anxiety and depression.  Talk with Pastor Laura if you’d like to attend.

Our Next Book Club Selection:
How to Talk So Kids Will Listen and Listen So Kids Will Talk.  We plan to talk about it for two gatherings, with our first on Tuesday, March 5, 7pm.  Copies are available in the narthex for a recommend donation of $9. 


E-votional and E-vents February 11-19


Gospel artist Eddie Ruth Bradford sings, "I'm too close to the mirror, to see what you see..."  

Her words are very much like what Jeremiah once said to God, when he was being called--“Ah, Lord God! Truly I do not know how to speak, for I am only a boy.” 

Resistance and self-doubt have long been part of the experience of God's people: we do often struggle to see what God sees in us.

This week, in a spirit of prayer, I hope you'll take a few minutes to listen to the song.

As you listen, open your spirit to God's love and blessings in your life, and open your heart to how God may be calling you today.


Bonus: You can find images of the fountain, river, and stones from worship this past Sunday by visiting our website's sermon page  As  you look at the stones, you'll see our words for who God has been to us--thanks be to God!

Scripture for Sunday: Psalm 71:1-6 and Jeremiah 1:4-10


E-votional and Events
Wednesday, 3:30pm:Policy Team 
Sunday, 9am: Sunday School
10am: Worship

Sunday, February 24:Spring newsletter submissions are due to Becky Lewis (lewis@geneseo.edu).  

Join Us for Dinner!
This February you are invited to one of our special Gathering Table Dinners.  These fun, social gatherings for adults in our congregation will offer the opportunity to enjoy time getting to know one another over a shared meal, February 22, 23, or 24, 6:30pm, in church members' homes.  
Please sign up in the narthex or by emailing Pastor Laura at covingtonpastor@gmail.com, with all ofthe dates that could work for you.  Once you sign up, we'll share the details about your host and location and you'll have the chance to register any dietary restrictions for the meal.  Join us at our Gathering Table Dinner.

Our Next Book Club Selection:
How to Talk So Kids Will Listen and Listen So Kids Will Talk.  We plan to talk about it for two gatherings, with our first on Tuesday, March 5, 7pm.  Copies are available in the narthex for a recommend donation of $9. 



E-votional and E-vents Feb 4-11
This Sunday we'll begin a sermon series on God's call, exploring the variety of ways God calls us to faith, leadership, and service.

We'll start with the story of Joshua, whom God called to lead the people through the Jordan River, out of the wilderness and into the Promised Land.

This story begins shortly after Moses' death, as Joshua is called to be his successor.  Moses led the people out of Egypt and through the wilderness for 40 years; now Joshua is the one God chooses to lead them into the Promised Land.  He is a new leader for a new moment in history, yet his ministry stands in continuity with the legacy of Moses.

This week I invite you to consider...

Who is the "Moses" of your own life--the person (or perhaps people) whose legacy of faith, leadership, and service you are now carrying forward?
What did your "Moses" teach you?

Now give thanks to God for this Moses in your own life, and the impact he or she has had on you.  Pray that God may give you strength to honor this person's legacy and live out your faith today.

Scripture for Sunday: Selections from Joshua, chapters 1, 3, 4

Our Next Book Club Selection:
How to Talk So Kids Will Listen and Listen So Kids Will Talk.  We plan to talk about it for two gatherings, with our first on Tuesday, March 5, 7pm.  Copies are available in English and Spanish for $9. Please send me a quick email today if you'd like to order through the church and I'll have the books ready for pick-up this Sunday.


Events this Week:
Tuesday, 7pm: Dining Room Planning Team meeting
Sunday, 9am: Sunday School
9am: Vacation Bible School Committee meets
9:15am: Choir
10am: Worship
2-4pm: Community Youth Group at York United Presbyterian Church.  We’ll be exploring the topic of friendship, especially making friends in college. Our speaker will be LCSW Sheri Kreher, who works with Geneseo College students, is the parent of two teens herself, and is active at St Mary's in Geneseo.  This should be a great and very interactive conversation. 

Join Us for Dinner!
This February you are invited to one of our special Gathering Table Dinners.  These fun, social gatherings for adults in our congregation will offer the opportunity to enjoy time getting to know one another over a shared meal, February 22, 23, or 24, 6:30pm, in church members' homes.  
Please sign up in the narthex or by emailing Pastor Laura at covingtonpastor@gmail.com, with all ofthe dates that could work for you.  Once you sign up, we'll share the details about your host and location and you'll have the chance to register any dietary restrictions for the meal.  Join us at our Gathering Table Dinner.


E-votional and E-vents Jan 28-Feb 4
This Sunday's Scripture reading challenges us to think about our own temptation to seek praise.  When Jesus first gets up to speak in the synagogue, people are impressed with what he says and praise him.  But then Jesus goes on, and the second part of his message is not what they wanted to hear. The mood quickly changes, from praise to rage.

This week I invite you to reflect on the role of praise in your own life.  How do you feel when people say good things about you...happy, embarrassed, validated, valuable, important, or something else...?

By contrast, how do you respond to criticism?  What are your reactions, internally and externally?

Sit with these two realities of praise and criticism a little bit this week, and consider how they play into your own sense of self-worth and relationship with God.  Then join us in worship to consider how Jesus dealt with praise and criticism in his own life.

Prayer: Lord, help us to root our spirits deeply in you.  Be our solid rock, our shelter, our voice of wisdom, our guiding light, today and every day.  Amen.

Scripture for Sunday: Luke 4:14-21 and 22-30

Events this Week:
Friday, February 1, 6-8pm: Family Movie Night at the Noblehurst Fieldhouse.  We'll be featuring the family-friendly film Charlotte's Web and serving popcorn and milk.  Admission: One gallon of milk for the Pavilion Food Pantry.  All are welcome!
Sunday, February 3, 9am: Sunday School
10am: Worship and the Souper Bowl of Caring
We’re collecting easy-open, pop-top, and/or microwaveable soup this Sunday for our Souper Bowl of Caring to support the Pavilion and York Food Pantries.  The easy-open style is a big help to children preparing meals for themselves and to the elderly, who may find it hard to operate a can opener.  Please place your donations in the grocery cart in the narthex to share with neighbors in need.  Thank you for being part of Covington's Souper Bowl of Caring!

Sign Up Today for our Presbytery's Congregational Learning Day, Saturday, Feb 9 at Perinton Presbyterian Church.  This event is a great way to explore your faith, deepen leadership skills, and learn about new approaches to ministry. Childcare is provided.   Here's the link to the brochure with course descriptions and registration details:  https://pbygenval.org/congregational-learning-day/  Register by Monday, Feb 4th.  Hope you can join us there!


Join Us for Dinner!
This February you are invited to one of our special Gathering Table Dinners.  These fun, social gatherings for adults in our congregation will offer the opportunity to enjoy time getting to know one another over a shared meal, February 22, 23, or 24, 6:30pm, in church members' homes.  
Please sign up in the narthex or by emailing Pastor Laura at covingtonpastor@gmail.com, with all ofthe dates that could work for you.  Once you sign up, we'll share the details about your host and location and you'll have the chance to register any dietary restrictions for the meal.  Join us at our Gathering Table Dinner.

Our Next Book Club Selection:
How to Talk So Kids Will Listen and Listen So Kids Will Talk.  We plan to talk about it for two sessions, one in February and one in March.  Sign up to purchase a copy for $9 in the narthex.  A Spanish version is also available for purchase.


E-votional and E-vents for Nov 15-26

Psalm 107:1 says, "Give thanks to the Lord for he is good; God's steadfast love endures forever."

As we prepare for the celebration of Thanksgiving, I want to invite you to spend some time giving thanks to the Lord.

Think about how God's goodness has blessed or strengthened these areas of your life this year:

Your family life...
Your friendships and other relationships...
Your health...
Your spiritual life...
Your place of work, learning, or volunteer service...

Spend some time in prayer, sharing your gratitude with God, and asking the Lord to continue to bring you guidance and strength now and in the future.

Scripture for November 18: 1 Samuel 2:1-10 and Mark 13:1-8
Scripture for November 25: Psalm 118:22-29 and Luke 17:11-19

Rev. Laura Fry will be on vacation November 17-25.  In case of pastoral emergency, please contact elder Rick Noble at 734-6157.  The evotional and events will resume the week of November 26th.

Upcoming Events 
Thursday, November 15, 4pm: Policy Meeting
Sunday, November 18, 9am:Sunday School
10am: We welcome Rev. Mike Stuart to preaching and leading worship.
Sunday, November 25, 9am:Sunday School
10am: We welcome Rev. Bob Kaiser to preaching and leading worship.
Monday, November 26, 7pm:Session
Wednesday, November 28, 7pm: Mission and Service Committee
Sunday, December 2, 9am: Sunday School
10am:The First Sunday of Advent, worship and the Sacrament of Communion.  Pledge dedication
11am: Worship and Music Committee meets

Special Events:
Family Dinner And Christmas Caroling: Friday, November 30, 5-7pm  Snow date: Friday, Dec 7.  
We’ll enjoy a dinner at church then travel to sing at the LeRoy Village Green Nursing Home and to a homebound church member. All ages are welcome.  If you’re definitely planning to come, please let us know by November 26 to help with planning Email Rev. Laura Fry (covingtonpastor@gmail.com) Or text 991-8789.  If you would like to help with donations of fruit, nuts, cookies, or candy for gift boxes for our senior members, any items would be welcomed.

"Won't You Be My Neighbor"--a discussion of this new documentary film about Mister Rogers.  It's available to rent from Amazon Prime and a copy is available to borrow from the church.  Watch the film and then join us Tuesday, December 4, 7-8:30pm for a discussion.

Sunday, Dec 9, join us at 10am for our children’s Christmas pageant, followed by lunch with Santa. Bring a dish to share and sign up in the narthex with children's names and ages.  

Christmas Book Fair: The First Presbyterian Church in East Avon invites you to join their congregation at a Children’s Book Fair on Saturday, December 8, 9-11am.  They will have samples of a variety of books from Spark House Family Publishers, a wonderful source for Christian books for children, and be able place orders that will arrive in time for Christmas.  Any orders from Covington church members will be available here at Covington on December 23.  First Presbyterian is located at the intersection of Routes 5 & 20 with Route 15, in East Avon. A Christmas cookie sale will also be taking place with the book sale. 

Memorial Poinsettias:  If you would like to honor a loved one with a poinsettia this Advent, please sign up in the narthex with the name of the person or people you would like to honor.  



E-votional and E-vents November 6-12

What a joy it is to be able to offer our Election Night Pancake Supper this evening!

Following the flooding last year at this time, our trustees have worked hard to find effective ways to improve our drainage and protect the church from future water damage.  With the wet weather of the past few weeks, we have been especially thankful to see the drainage working so well.  

This evening we look forward to hosting members of our community who will gather at the church for this meal.  The Pancake Supper a fundraiser--yes--and we are always grateful for the funds that are raised in such events.  Along with this purpose, we will also be creating the opportunity for neighbors to build community with one another.  Opening our church in this way provides space for neighbors to gather and visit, experiencing the hospitality of our congregation and most of all, the love of Christ.

As we welcome our guests this evening, let us keep our hearts focused on the purpose of hospitality and welcome, joyfully demonstrating the love and peace of Christ to our neighbors.

A Prayer for the Pancake Supper:
Lord, as we gather to share this meal...
May the kitchen be warmed by love,
May the tables be spread with the abundance of a family meal,
May neighbors come together with laughter, enthusiasm, and care,
And return home encouraged and uplifted, named and known.
And may we all taste the sweetness of your grace, so freely poured into our lives.
Amen.

Events this Week:
Join us Tuesday, November 6, 2018, 5-7pm for an all-you-can-eat, family style Election Night Pancake Supper, as well as a Bake Sale.
Tickets are available at the door. Adults and youth 12 years and older: $7; Children 6-11 years old: $4; Children 5 and younger eat for free.
This fundraiser will benefit our church's ministry and 10% will be given to the Veterans' One-Stop Center in Batavia.  Join us!

Sunday, 9am:Sunday School
10am:Worship
Following the service we will be hosting another “Building a Caring Community” conversation on the ministry of Teresa House.
Monday, November 12: Submissions for the Advent Newsletter are due to Becky Lewis (lewis@gmail.com)
7pm: Meeting of the Worship and Music Committee

Upcoming:
Building Blocks of a Meaningful Retirement: Wednesday, November 14, 12-2pm with Rev. Neil Frood, Honorably Retired  Lunch is included!  RSVP to Pastor Laura (covingtonpastor@gmail.com) or sign up in the church narthex.
This event is being offered at no cost, thanks to the generous bequest of Elder Arlene Stewart.

"Won't You Be My Neighbor"--a discussion of this new documentary film about Mister Rogers.  It's available to rent from Amazon Prime and a copy will be available to borrow from the church beginning Nov 11.  Watch the film and then join us Tuesday, December 4, 7-8:30pm for a discussion. DVD Link



E-votional and E-vents October 30-November 6

There are times in life when we don't have the words to pray...

In these moments we turn to the words of Scripture, allowing these ancient prayers to become our own.

The psalmist writes,
"Out of the depths I cry to you, O LORD.
Lord, hear my voice!" (Psalm 130:1-2)

Many in our country this week are crying out to the Lord...
  • Crying out from the depths of sorrow at the loss of life last Saturday in a place of worship
  • Crying out from the depths of shock at such violence in a sacred space
  • And crying out from the depths of grief at how far we have fallen into hatred.
Out of the depths we cry to you, O LORD.  Lord, hear our voice!

In our community there is also heavy sorrow today, as we have learned of the death of Lisa Freeman Cummins.  After a long battle with cancer, Lisa has now passed from this life to the life eternal.  For the promises of resurrection life, we give thanks, yet still there is grave sorrow for many around and among our extended church family and community. Out of the depths we cry to you, O LORD.

The psalmist continues,

"I wait for the LORD, my soul waits, 
and in his word I hope; 
my soul waits for the Lord 
more than those who watch for the morning, 
more than those who watch for the morning.
O Israel, hope in the LORD!
For with the LORD there is steadfast love, 
and with him is great power to redeem."

Friends, in times of sorrow, anger, and confusion, let us cry out to the LORD, with honesty and truth.

Let us wait for the LORD, and put our hope in his word.  
With the LORD there is steadfast love, 
and with him is great power to redeem."

The Calling for Lisa Cummins will be this Thursday, 1-4pm and 6-9pm at Weeks Funeral Home in Warsaw.  The funeral service will take place Friday, 10am, also at Weeks Funeral Home.  Lisa's obituary may be found here
Let us surround her family in our prayers.


Scripture for Sunday: Psalm 146:1-10 and Mark 12:28-34

Events this Week:
Tuesday, 7-8:30pm:Book Club at Covington on God, Improv, and the Art of Living. 
Saturday: Turn your clocks back an hour as Daylight Saving Time ends
Sunday, 9am:Sunday School
10am:Worship
Following the service we will be hosting another “Building a Caring Community” conversation, as Sue Kinney shares with us about her recent work with refugees.
Monday, 7pm: Hospitality Team meeting

Our Election Night Pancake Supper is coming soon!  
  • Volunteers are needed after worship on Sunday to clean and set up the kitchen and dining room.  
  • The Pancake Supper and Bake Sale will take place on Tuesday, November 6, 5-7pm at Covington.  We hope you can join us for this wonderful time of fun, fellowship, and delicious food to benefit the  ministries of our church.  In addition 10% of the proceeds will be given to the Veterans One-Stop Center in Batavia.  We'll have a representative from this organization available to share about their work.  Please join us!



E-votional and E-vents October 22-29

As I shared with the children yesterday in worship, we've been hearing a whole lot of stories lately about the disciples getting things all wrong: first they argued about who was the best; then they tried to keep kids away from Jesus; then they tried to elbow their way to the best seats in God's kingdom.  Mercy.

But finally, this coming Sunday, someone 

gets 

it 

RIGHT!

The man's name is Bartimaeus and Mark tells us that he was a "blind beggar."  It's an interesting description, given the fact that he has some of the keenest spiritual insight in the entire gospel of Mark. Bartimaeus prophetically names the identity of Jesus--calling him the "Son of David."  And although he is poor in financial resources, this man is rich in faith--whole-heartedly believing Jesus can heal him and then setting off, following Jesus "on the way."

This story is a bright spot in the gospel, a final "aha" moment before the events of Holy Week.  At last, the identity of Jesus--and the possibility of faith and discipleship--appear before us with great clarity and hope.

Sometimes we can be tempted to let our own struggles in life get in the way of faith.  Some version of, "I can't believe in a good God because..."  

But Bartimaeus--who had every reason to despair--instead claimed faith in Jesus and put his hope in him.

So perhaps Bartimaeus might gently question us today, encouraging us to consider,

What gets in the way of my faith?  

Can I, like Bartimaeus, call out to Jesus in my need?

Can I believe that Jesus will answer me?

This week, may we boldly bring our need before the Lord, and find our strength and hope in him.

Scripture for Sunday:  Psalm 34:1-8 and Mark 10:46-52

Events this Week:
Thursday, 7pm: Session
Sunday, 9am: Sunday School
10:30am: Worship, with friends from York United Presbyterian Church joining us in worship and celebration. Join us for a wonderful celebration of our Scottish and Reformed heritage!

Trunk or Treat at the Pavilion Library
The Pavilion Library is inviting churches to participate in a new event October 31, 6-7:30pm in the library parking lot.  They are reaching out to churches for volunteers to provide and pass out candy and to help with parking and traffic control.  Please talk with Rev. Laura Fry if you would be interested in volunteering.

The Building Blocks of a Meaningful Retirement
Wednesday, November 14, 12-2pm: A special workshop for those who are retired or preparing for retirement, led by Rev. Neil Frood. Lunch will be provided.  Please save the date and plan to join us!

You are invited to a Book Club at Covington
Our first selection is the thought-provoking new book by Presbyterian pastor MaryAnn McKibben Dana: God, Improv, and the Art of Living. This book, which considers Christian faith through the lens of improvisational theatre, is guaranteed to challenge and inspire you. Copies are available at Amazon and Christianbook.com. Our discussion will be Tuesday, October 30, 7-8:30pm.  


Find Covington’s new channel on YouTube:
Search “Covington, Pavilion, NY”



E-votional and E-vents October 15-22


This year the Presbyterian Church (USA) published a new Book of Common Worship (the first in 25 years).  This new edition contains many of the familiar prayers and liturgies and adds in some new ones that speak to our contemporary joys and sorrows.

One section of the book that I have found especially enriching is the recovery of numerous ancient prayers from the Christian tradition.

Along the way many of these prayers had been lost or omitted from worship books, and this edition has sought, among other things, to invite 21st Century readers to rediscover them.

One of these prayers comes to us from Hildegard of Bingen, a Benedictine nun in the 12th Century.  In her ministry she was an "abbess, artist, author, composer, mystic, pharmacist, poet, preacher, and theologian"--who, from a young age, experienced mystical visions of God that caused her "to see humans as 'living sparks' of God’s love, coming from God as daylight comes from the sun."  Source

Here then is a prayer she composed, that invites us to mystical and even fantastical images of the Christian life:

Most strong God, 
who is able to fight against you?
I want you to help me fight against
the flaming dragon of sin within me,
that eats away my very soul.
I want to have the strongest sword in my hand,
fashioned by you, with the sharpest blade
that will cut through the dragon's scales.
And when I have slayed the dragon within myself,
I want to offer a safe refuge for all
who, like me, are frail and vulnerable.
I will give them a sword to slay their own dragons,
so that together we may live in joy and peace.  Amen.

Scripture for Sunday: Mark 10:35-45

Events this Week:
Tuesday, 4:30pm: Policy Team meeting
Thursday, 7pm:Mission and Service Committee 
Sunday, 9am:Sunday School
10am:Worship
5:30-7:30pm: Community Youth Group at York Presbyterian Church. Meet at Covington at 5:15pm to carpool. Dinner is included!  Let Laura Fry know if your youth (grades 6-12) is interested.

Upcoming Events:

Seeking Volunteers!  Trunk or Treat at the Pavilion Library
The Pavilion Library is inviting churches to participate in a new event October 31, 6-7:30pm in the library parking lot.  They are reaching out to churches for volunteers to provide and pass out candy and to help with parking and traffic control.  More information is available in the narthex.  Please talk with Rev. Laura Fry if you would be interested in volunteering.

2018 Kirkin’ of the Tartans
Sunday, October 28, 10:30am at Covington, with friends from York United Presbyterian Church joining us in worship and celebration. 

The Building Blocks of a Meaningful Retirement
Wednesday, November 14, 12-2pm: A special workshop for those who are retired or preparing for retirement, led by Rev. Neil Frood. Lunch will be provided.  Please save the date and plan to join us!

You are invited to a Book Club at Covington

Our first selection is the thought-provoking new book by Presbyterian pastor MaryAnn McKibben Dana: God, Improv, and the Art of Living. This book, which considers Christian faith through the lens of improvisational theatre, is guaranteed to challenge and inspire you. Copies are available at Amazon and Christianbook.com. Our discussion will be Tuesday, October 30, 7-8:30pm.  


E-votional and E-vents October 9-15

First of all, a word of deep thanks for the beautiful celebration on Sunday!  I am so grateful for your loving and beautiful reception and gift to celebrate 10 years of ministry together.  It continues to be a blessing to serve as your pastor.  Thank you so very, very much!

***

Our gospel reading for this coming Sunday invites us to consider the meaning of the word "sacrifice"...

As you consider this word, is your feeling about sacrifice more positive or negative?

Do you think of offering a gift to someone you love, such as sacrificing a good night's sleep to care for a sick child?

Or do you think more of deprivation and lack?

In Mark 10:17-31, Jesus challenges a man to make a very great sacrifice in order to inherit eternal life.  Today I invite you to consider...

What is a time you have made a sacrifice for someone you love?  What did it feel like?

What is a time you have made a sacrifice for something greater than yourself--your country, your work, or an organization to which you are committed?

And finally, what is a time you have made a sacrifice for God?  What did you give up?  How did it feel?

Sometimes making a sacrifice feels like a burden but in other cases a sacrifice can bring great meaning and even freedom to our lives.  

So this week, consider the sacrifices you have made...how have these sacrifices shaped your life?  Your values?  Your character?

And as you consider these questions, may God's grace and peace be yours in abundance.

Scripture for Sunday:  Mark 10:17-31

Events this Week:
Friday, 6-8pm: Family Dinner, Hayride, and Campfire.  We’ll be serving hotdogs, apples, chips, and s’mores.  No need to bring anything—just join us for a fun family evening.  All ages are welcome.  This event is free!  If you’re definitely planning to come, please let us know by Wednesday, October 10 to help with planning.  Email Rev. Laura Fry (covingtonpastor@gmail.com) or text 991-8789.  We know that fall schedules are busy, so an RSVP isn’t absolutely necessary.  If you find you can come the night of the event, please join us!
  
Sunday, 9am:Sunday School
9:15am:Session
10am:Worship

Coming Up:

2018 Kirkin’ of the Tartans
Sunday, October 28, 10:30am at Covington, with friends from York United Presbyterian Church joining us in worship and celebration. 


Trunk or Treat at the Pavilion Library: The Pavilion Library is inviting churches to participate in a new event October 31, 6-7:30pm in the library parking lot.  They are reaching out to churches for volunteers to provide and pass out candy and to help with parking and traffic control.  More information is available in the narthex.  Please talk with Rev. Laura Fry if you would be interested in volunteering.



E-votional and E-vents October 1-8


Covington Crop Walk Team

We had a great Crop Walk yesterday at Black Creek Park!  Our friends at Chili did a fantastic job hosting us.  We had 42 walkers (13 of these were children and youth) and together we raised $2,323 for hunger relief.  Lima, Chili, Covington, and York Baptist were all represented. 

This coming week in worship we will be celebrating World Communion Sunday--a day set aside to celebrate our unity with Christians of every denomination and country of the world.  

As part of our celebration, we'll be receiving the Peace and Global Witness Offering, which supports ministries of peace and justice around the world.  Our local portion (25%) of the offering will be building peace in our schools by funding anti-bullying efforts at the York Elementary School and restorative justice work with the 5th graders at Pavilion Elementary School.  

As we long for peace and security in all our communities, let us give generously to help build this peace among our children in Pavilion and York--and in communities all around the world.

Scripture for Sunday: Mark 10:13-16

Events this Week:

Wednesday, 7pm:Trustees
Sunday, 9am:Sunday School
10am: World Communion Sunday and the Peace and Global Witness Offering

Family Dinner, Hayride, and Bonfire
Join us at church on Friday, October 12, at 6pm (rain date of October 19). We’ll be serving hotdogs, apples, chips, and s’mores.  No need to bring anything—just join us for a fun family evening.  All ages are welcome.  This event is free!  If you’re definitely planning to come, please let us know by October 5 to help with planning Email Rev. Laura Fry (covingtonpastor@gmail.com) or text 991-8789.  We know that fall schedules are busy, so an RSVP isn’t absolutely necessary.  If you find you can come the night of the event, please join us!


E-votional and E-vents September 25-October 1

This Sunday's Scripture reading presents us with the image of "stumbling blocks"--things that prevent people from getting to Jesus.  

The stumbling block Jesus specifically addresses is the disciples' misunderstanding of who can minister in Jesus' name--what qualifications does one need in order to do good?

This week I invite you to consider the "stumbling blocks" that may keep people from being part of a church.  These stumbling blocks are, in some cases, intentional, but in many cases I believe they are completely unintentional and unrecognized.

For example several years ago many of us gained the insight that it is easy to use insider language that newcomers may not understand.  There's no intentional exclusion happening, just the assumption that everyone knows what we mean.  Or knows prayers or songs that are familiar to us.  Or understands words like "grace," "doxology," or "benediction."  

Are there other barriers people may perceive, even in a place as welcoming as Covington?  

Knowing the warmth of our congregation, any such barriers are likely to be unintentional--yet they can still exist--at least until we notice and dismantle them.

Prayer: 
Open my eyes, that I may see, visions of truth Thou hast for me. 
Place in my hands the wonderful key that shall unclasp and set me free.  
Silently now I wait for Thee, ready my God Thy will to see; 
Open my eyes illumine me, Spirit divine!


Scripture for Sunday: Mark 9:38-50

Events this Week:
Tuesday,4pm: Presbytery at Chili
Thursday, 7pm:Session
Sunday, 9am:Sunday School 
10am:Worship

Crop Walk/Run 2018
On Sunday, September 30th, our 2018 CROP Walk/Run will start at 2pm at Black Creek Park with registration beginning at 1:30pm. You will have the option to walk or run one, three, or six mile routes along beautiful, wooded park trails.  Fundraising forms are in the church narthex.

Family Dinner, Hayride, and Bonfire
Join us at church on Friday, October 12, 6-8pm (rain date of October 19). All ages are welcome—bring your friends and family and join us for a great evening!

Trunk or Treat at the Pavilion Library
The Pavilion Library is inviting churches to participate in a new event October 31, 6-7:30pm in the library parking lot.  They are reaching out to churches for volunteers to provide and pass out candy and to help with parking and traffic control.  More information is available in the narthex.  Please talk with Rev. Laura Fry or Janet Edwards if you would be interested in volunteering.  

The Building Blocks of a Meaningful Retirement
Wednesday, November 14, 12-2pm: A special workshop for those who are retired or preparing for retirement, led by Rev. Neil Frood. Lunch will be provided.  Please save the date and plan to join us!



E-votional and E-vents September 18-24

Want to discover a new way to pray?

This week I encourage you to visit Pray As You Go and experience one of their daily devotions.  I have found this site to be a powerful resource in my own spiritual life.

Each devotion lasts 10-13 minutes and includes music, Scripture, and the opportunity to talk with and listen to God.  It's designed to be flexible and available anywhere you happen to be.

The goal is to help you

  • become more aware of God's presence in your life   
  • listen to and reflect on God's word   
  • grow in your relationship with God
So give your spirit a boost this week with Pray As You Go !

Scripture for Sunday: Mark 9:30-37

Events this Week:
Thursday, 7pm: Kirkin' Planning Meeting
Sunday, 9am:Sunday School 
10am:Worship

You are invited to a Book Club at Covington
Our first selection is the thought-provoking new book by Presbyterian pastor MaryAnn McKibben Dana: God, Improv, and the Art of Living. This book, which considers Christian faith through the lens of improvisational theatre, is guaranteed to challenge and inspire you.  Copies are available at Amazon and Christianbook  Our discussion will be Tuesday, October 30, 7-8:30pm.  

From the Mission and Service Committee:

The Pavilion Food Pantry invites you...
To attend and/or volunteer with a Free Community Meal on September 22, 4-6pm in the Pavilion town center across from the United Methodist Church.  If you would like to volunteer with set up or clean up, please contact Sue Kinney at 880-2462.  

Crop Walk/Run 2018
Mark your calendars for Sunday, September 30th!  Our 2018 CROP Walk/Run will start at 2pm at Black Creek Park with registration beginning at 1:30pm. You will have the option to walk or run one, three, or six mile routes along beautiful, wooded park trails.  Fundraising forms are in the church narthex.

HomeCare & Hospice is looking for caring individuals, professionals, and veterans who are willing to use their skills and experiences to enhance the lives of hospice patients and their caregivers.  If you are interested in learning more, information is available in the Assembly Room at church or by contacting Patricia Meek, 786-7879.

Find Covington’s new channel on YouTube:
Search “Covington, Pavilion, NY”





E-votional and E-vents September 10-17

In our gospel reading for this Sunday, Peter struggles with embracing the full identity of Jesus.  He gets the part about Jesus being the Messiah but tells Jesus off when he talks about his suffering.

Perhaps we can understand where Peter is coming from.  Some parts of the gospel ARE much easier to accept than others.  Some things that Jesus said and did make us deeply uneasy.

In your prayers this week, I encourage you to consider, 

What about Jesus appeals the most to me?  

And,

What about Jesus do I find the hardest or most challenging to accept?

Prayer:
O Christ, in whose heart is both welcome and warning, 
say to us,
do to us,
reveal within us
the things that will make us whole. 
Amen.

Scripture for Sunday: Mark 8:27-38

Events this Week:
Tuesday, 7pm: Policy Meeting
Sunday, 9am:Sunday School 
10am: Worship

You are invited to a Book Club at Covington
Our first selection is the thought-provoking new book by Presbyterian pastor MaryAnn McKibben Dana: God, Improv, and the Art of Living. This book, which considers Christian faith through the lens of improvisational theatre, is guaranteed to challenge and inspire you.  Copies are available at Amazon and Christianbook  Our discussion will be Tuesday, October 30, 7-8:30pm.  

From the Mission and Service Committee:

The Pavilion Food Pantry invites you...
To attend and/or volunteer with a Free Community Meal on September 22, 4-6pm in the Pavilion town center across from the United Methodist Church.  If you would like to volunteer with set up or clean up, please contact Sue Kinney at 880-2462.  

Crop Walk/Run 2018
Mark your calendars for Sunday, September 30th!  Our 2018 CROP Walk/Run will start at 2pm at Black Creek Park with registration beginning at 1:30pm. You will have the option to walk or run one, three, or six mile routes along beautiful, wooded park trails.  Fundraising forms are in the church narthex.

HomeCare & Hospice is looking for caring individuals, professionals, and veterans who are willing to use their skills and experiences to enhance the lives of hospice patients and their caregivers.  If you are interested in learning more, information is available in the Assembly Room at church or by contacting Patricia Meek, 786-7879.

Find Covington’s new channel on YouTube:
Search “Covington, Pavilion, NY”


E-votional and E-vents September 5-12

Watching the sunset from the mountains of Puerto Rico, a haze hovered above San Juan.  “What’s that?” I asked our host, thinking perhaps it was fog or pollution.

“Those are sands from the Sahara,” he replied. 

I paused, astonished. How could the winds carry grains of sand 4,000 miles?

How could I be seeing part of Africa here in the Caribbean? 

I had become accustomed to mentally mapping the globe into countries, continents, and hemispheres. This mapping is a valuable tool for governance and navigation.  Sometimes, however, humans can start to practice a kind of spiritual mapping—dividing the world into “us” and “them,” into places and people who matter more than others.

This topic of “Who matters?” is the one that Jesus and a woman argue about in our gospel reading for Sunday.  Mark 7:24-30 is a story about race, religion, and difference—and how Jesus grappled with these realities in his time.  It’s the only instance in the Gospel of Mark when someone argues with Jesus and wins.  

Like the sands of the Sahara lingering over San Juan, the woman challenges Jesus to see that they are connected.  And to act, with compassion, based on this connection.

In his “Letter from Birmingham Jail,” Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King writes, “We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly."

This week I challenge you to consider who in your life (or in our wider world) seems very different from you—even frustratingly different.  And then to argue with yourself a bit, pushing yourself to see a connection that you may never have glimpsed before.  

Then offer for this person (or people) the prayer: “May grace and peace be yours in abundance.”  Be sure to offer this prayer for yourself too.

Scripture for SundayJames 2:1-10 and Mark 7:24-30

Events this Week:
Sunday, 9am:Sunday School begins 
10am:Worship
11am:Mission and Service Committee meets

You are invited to a Book Club at Covington
Our first selection is the thought-provoking new book by Presbyterian pastor MaryAnn McKibben Dana: God, Improv, and the Art of Living. This book, which considers Christian faith through the lens of improvisational theatre, is guaranteed to challenge and inspire you.  Place your order for $16 by September 9 in the church narthex.  Copies are also available at Amazon and Christianbook.com and to borrow at the Presbytery Resource Center (242-0080).  Our discussion will be Tuesday, October 30, 7-8:30pm.  

Find Covington on YouTube—just search “Covington Pavilion NY” to access our channel.





E-votional and E-vents August 28- September 3
Covington's session has chosen the 2018-2019 theme: "Celebrating God's Grace," inspired by 1 Peter 1:2, "May grace and peace be yours in abundance."

This year we feel called to delve deeper into the meaning of God's grace and celebrate the ways God has been faithful to us as individuals and as a congregation.  

This week I invite you to memorize this verse: "May grace and peace be yours in abundance" and offer it as a prayer...
1.  First for someone you love
2.  Second for someone you find it hard to love
3.  And third for yourself, asking God to bring grace and peace into a challenging situation in your own life today.

This Sunday in worship we'll explore this verse, and the surrounding context from 1 Peter 1, considering its meaning for us.  

Together let's begin looking for ways to celebrate God's grace!

Also as our kids prepare to return to school next week, I encourage you to have your children bring their backpack with them to worship on Sunday for a special blessing of the backpacks and the new school year.  

May grace and peace be yours in abundance.  

Scripture for Sunday: 1 Peter 1:1-9

Events this Week:
Tonight: 6pm: Sunday School leaders' meeting
7pm: VBS meeting
Thursday, 7pm: Child Protection/Misconduct Policy meeting
Sunday, 10am: Worship, Blessing of the Backpacks, and the Sacrament of Communion.

Upcoming:
Sunday School resumes September 9, 9am

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