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From Pastor Claude


Dear Covenant Family,


At the end of this month, I'll be leaving for Africa.


As you may know, this coming Sunday marks the end of our "One Month to Live" series. We've been talking about living passionately, pursuing your God-ordained dreams, going after your "bucket list" sooner rather than later.


The trip I'm about to take is a pretty good example of that.


I've been invited to work with United Methodist missionary Eric Soard to conduct a two-week training school for eighteen pastors in the Tanzania Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church. Many of these pastors have no formal education past elementary school, much less Bible College or seminary.


I'll fly out of Asheville on the afternoon of Monday, October 28. When I arrive in Mwanza, Tanzania, my first task will be to visit some of the pastors in their churches so that I can get to know them and their setting.


The actual training school will run from Monday, November 4 through Thursday, November 14. I'll be teaching all day (whew!), and I've been asked to cover two main subjects:

  • Christian Doctrine, using the Apostles' Creed as a framework
  • Preaching and its Uses in Leadership of the Local Church

I'll leave Tanzania on Saturday, November 16, and arrive back in Asheville the next day at 6pm.


This opportunity represents the fulfillment of a years-long dream for me. When I was in college, my career goal was to be a missionary. As it turned out, God led me in other directions, but I still hoped that one day, somehow, God would use me in an overseas setting.


Why overseas?  Several reasons: 1) The needs in developing countries are astounding; 2) I've experienced the power of worshiping and sharing with Christians of another culture; 3) The people who had a lot to do with me coming to Christ were from overseas; 4) There are still billions of people who don't have access to the gospel in their own language.


I'd like you to go with me on this trip. I'd like this to be a Covenant thing and not just a Claude thing. Here are some ways you can be a real and meaningful part of this experience:

  • Follow my blog : I will try to update frequently and let you know what's going on. (If you forget this link, you can always click on the orange blog icon at the bottom right of any page on our website
  • Pray for me: As a matter of fact, start doing that now. Pray for my preparations. Ask God to show me what He wants me to share with the Tanzanian pastors.
  • Pray for the pastors: You'll find their names below. Hopefully once the school begins, I can post their pictures on my blog.
  • Pray for Eric Soard and his wife Elizabeth. The Soards weren't planning to be missionaries. They were enrolled in Divinity School, but they spent a summer volunteering at an orphanage in Tanzania. Before the summer was over, they felt a call to stay.

And one last thing you can do to make this trip successful...

  • Come to church at Covenant on November 3, 10, and 17! Don't stay away because I'm not there. Church isn't about the pastor -- it's about the Body of Christ. You are a part of the body, and the body needs you.

This Sunday is the last message in the "One Month to Live" series. Please do me a favor. If you have missed any of the messages in this series, listen to them this week. (Find them at -- listen online or through iTunes Podcasts.) You might even visit my blog and read any of the daily reflections you've missed.


And then join me Sunday as we explore "Living with No Regrets."


See ya' Sunday!


Pastor Claude


*Pastor's Names:  Sheltiel Nicodemu, Stephano Mulugu, Joseph Boniface Tanganyika, Beckmas Bambara, Enock Kulanga, Isaack Ibrahimu, John Mwika, Erasto Kimuga, Amos Byera, Joel Lazaro Wiliamu Zebabel, Jacob Korinda, Dommnick Agundason, Benard Angira, Wikendi Juma, Anna Migera, Denis Simon, Levi Nyasinde, and Joseph Lisambee.

Events and Dates to Remember

New York Mission Trip - Saturday, October 5 - Saturday, October 12

Please be in prayer for the team traveling to New York to help with Hurricane Sandy damage. Those traveling are: Anne Barker, Dom and Dee Trolian, Kern Witcher, Kerry LaPierre, Paula Henrikson, Ron and Beth Hilton,  Richelle Papineau, Sherry Goar, and Daniel Hinson.

Food, Fun, and Fellowship - Sunday, October 6 @ 11:45am
To make this event more successful, please take 2 minutes max to FILL OUT THIS BRIEF SURVEY BY CLICKING THIS LINKYour input is valuable!


Join us for a potluck meal, games, and fellowship with other Covenant families. Please bring a main dish, side dish, dessert, and/or drink to share. Questions? Contact Sabrina McAlister.

Join a Life Group - Wednesdays @ 6:30-8pm
If you want to grow in your relationship with Jesus, you need to have intentional relationships with people who have the same goal - and a Life Group is the ideal place for that. 
We have a group meeting on Wednesday evenings at the church that is specifically geared for adults that are new to Covenant or new to life groups. Childcare is available. Read more and sign up...
Beginning October 13 - New Sermon Series "The Blessed Life"

A dream home ... wonderful kids ... the ideal job ... and an overwhelming feeling of absolute emptiness ... there's so much more! Join us at Covenant for our new series, "The Blessed Life." You'll discover that there's so much more to life!


Thank You Covenant!

FIA Sunday - Thank You Note

Dear Covenant Community Church,


Thank you so much for offering yourselves in service to the community in such a big way on September 15th!  Your service at Haywood Street Congregation reached so many areas of our ministry, it's hard to know where to begin.  You offered hospitality to participants in our Walk for Awareness, which raised $10,000 in support of the Downtown Welcome Table; you beautified our campus; you prepared the meal we will use to thank Companions who serve at Haywood St. each week; and you built two new bike racks.  Thank you for all of that and the many other ways you enrich our community on an ongoing basis.  Grateful to you and to God as the source of all that is good.


Your friends at the Haywood Street Congregation

Orange Presentation

To those that came, thank you for coming!  We hope it was helpful in understanding our vision and focus for the children and students of Covenant. We do have printed books available for you to read and DVD's for you to view if you would like more information about Orange.  Please let Kelly McDill, Director of Children's Ministry, or Kevin Olrich, Director of Students and Life Groups, know if you are interested in borrowing any of these materials.

Children's Ministry

Small Groups Off to a Great Start

Our children have been in their small groups for a month now (93 kids total)!  The children seem very happy with the changes we have made.  There is a wonderful spirit among the children.  Relationships are already forming between children and their small group leaders.  It is exciting to be a part of this process and to see God working.  We have a wonderful group of dedicated leaders for which we are grateful.  Please be in prayer for the children and the small group leaders and ask God to continue to bless their relationships and deepen their relationship with Jesus through these small groups.


Please bring your children consistently each Sunday so that they may be a part of a small group and have this experience. We are encouraging children to bring their Bible so that they can learn the books of the Bible, how to find scripture and stories and how to make the Bible a daily resource for life. We are also teaching the children about giving and what God instructs us each to do to be a good steward. Each class has an offering box. We still want your child to invite friends to church. The friends will fit right into small groups.


Thank you for supporting your child's small groups by your prayers and encouragement.

Looking for Ways to Help on Sunday Mornings?

If you are looking for a place to plug in, read on and contact Kelly McDill, Director of Children's Ministry or Josh Ray to sign up.


Playground Team: Each Sunday we need someone or a team to wipe down the playground so that it is dry and ready for play time by 9:30am. 


Water Team: Each Sunday we need pitchers of water delivered to classrooms. The pitchers are in the kitchen ready to be filled and to deliver to classes by 10:05am snack time.

Family Fun Events

The Children's Council is currently planning family activities for the whole church to enjoy once a quarter. If you have an idea of something your family would participate in please send that idea to Children's Council members Sabrina McAlister or Allison Gilliam by October 11 so they can share them with the Children's Council. 

Volunteers Needed for Childcare During Christmas Eve Services

Christmas will be here in no time, so we are getting plans together for this year's Christmas Eve services. If you are willing to rock a baby, play with blocks, or read stories to children 3 years and younger during one of our Christmas Eve services please contact Kelly, Director of Children's Ministry.  This year's services will be at 5:30pm and 7:00pm. More details on the services to come.

Sponsorship for DSS Families at Christmas

We will be giving out names for children who need sponsors on Sunday, November 4 and 11.  Please be in prayer about becoming a sponsor family.  You may want to go in with other family members or other church families to sponsor a child. This is a great way for your child to help other children too. If you already know you want to sponsor a child please email Kelly McDill, Director of Children's Minsitry, and she will get the list to you as soon as I have them.


This year we are partnering with an older Sunday school class from Biltmore Baptist. Covenant families will provide the children's needed items and the Biltmore Baptist group will provide the wanted items.  Together we will provide a family Bible and an Ingles gift card to each family. Each year this project has grown and been blessed with your love and support. God is working wonders through you.


Thank you for supporting this project.

A Personal Note from Kelly McDill, Director of Children's Ministry

After three years of bone spur and Achilles tendon pain I have decided to undergo surgery on October 4th to repair my ankle.  I will be out for the first two Sunday's in October as I can't put any weight on that foot for two weeks.  The Children's Council and small group leaders will be able to help you with anything you may need regarding your child on those Sunday mornings. I will still be checking email so feel free to contact me if you should need other assistance.  Thank you for your support and prayers. 

Community Happenings

Painting Project at Haywood Street

Saturday, October 26 @ 1-4pm

Painting Extravaganza! Join us at Haywood Street for food, fun, fellowship, and lots of painting. We will paint the Haywood St. Respite space for the homeless (9+ rooms). Painting supplies and equipment will be supplied. Call or  email Jody Halstead at 828-713-8437 to sign up.

Needed: Washer and Dryer for a Local Family

There's a family with children at Mills River Elementary who have been living out of their storage rental unit and they've gotten a place to live, but could really use a washer and dryer. If you can help, please contact Shannon Barber828-808-6377.

Covenant Community Church | 828-298-8955 | 11 Rocket Drive | Asheville, NC 28803