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“I was a stranger and you welcomed me.”

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“I was a stranger and you welcomed me.”

“I was a stranger and you welcomed me.”
~ The Gospel of Matthew

What if…
Our deterrence was directed toward making horrendous the use of “alien”, “those people”, “illegals”, and the fear of the other,

And we put our energy and efforts, prayers and presence toward:
~Building relationships with someone whose homeland is different than our own, who longs for a safe place to call home, so that bridges might replace barriers?

~Showing up for the uncomfortable yet necessary conversations, that we might come to know that our respective human migration stories are each part of the larger “human story?”

~Seeing more clearly that the Gospel “documents” all people as
people of God, even when, especially when, authorities label some as “undocumented?”

What if…
In this hard work of embodying the Gospel:
We begin to see a fuller image of God?
We come to know that the immigrant is part of who we are?

Synod of the Covenant Assembly, Weber Center, ADS, Adrian, MI
Gratitude for the presenters Rev. Raafat Zaki, Attracta Kelly, OP, JD, and Amanda Craft
“Undocumented Women” stone figures carved by Lucianne Siers, OP
Embroidered altar cloth from Iraq
“Glimpse of Grace” © Rev. Cathy Johnson, March 21-22, 2019

Newsletter – September 27, 2018

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Newsletter – September 27, 2018

Muslims and Christians:
Partners or Enemies?

Synod of the covenant Fall Assembly
Friday November 2, 2018
1:00 to 5:00 pm
Christ Presbyterian Church
4225 Sylvania Ave. Toledo, OH 43606

Guest Speakers PC(USA) Mission Co-Workers:
Bernie Adeney-Risakotta, Professor of Religion, Ethics and Social science, Indonesesian Consortium for Religious Studies, Yogyakarta, Indonesia and Farsijana Adeney-Risakotta, anthropologist, theologian and faculty member at Duta Wacana Christian University

“Our talk will share about creative ways Muslims and Christians are working together in Indonesia. Indonesia is the largest Muslim country in the world, but also has a growing and vibrant church. We will address the question of why the church is thriving in the worlds largest Muslim country and what are the threats, challenges and opportunities for the future. Both Farsijana and I will share about our separate ministries, with the emphasis of my work in Muslim universities and Farsijana’s work with villagers who are facing rapid social change.”

Featured Speakers
Participants in the Synod’s Mission to the USA program for 2018
Rev. John Hira

John is the pastor of St Thomas Cathedral Church and the principal of St Andrew’s Theological College. He lives in Dhaka Bangladesh. John will be hosted by Christ Presbyterian Church, Toledo, OH Pastor- Rev. Tom Schwartz Presbytery of Maumee Valley

Rev. Dr. Nosheen Khan
Nosheen is the first Presbyterian ordained women in Pakistan. She is a professor at Gujranwala Theological Seminary, teaching courses in Women’s Ministry. Nosheen will be hosted by Canfield Presbyterian Church in Canfield, OH Pastor- Rev. Larry Bowald Presbytery of Eastminster

Rev. Saman Perera
Saman is the pastor of a congregation and currently the Moderator of the Presbytery of Lanka. He is also the chairperson of the Board of Governors of the Theological College of Lanka, which is the Protestant Ecumenical National Seminary. Saman is the co-founder of a peace organization with a focus on co-existance based on non-violence. He lives in Kandy, Sri Lanka, Saman will be hosted by Worthington Presbyterian Church Worthington, OH Pastor- Rev. Julia Wharff Piermont Associate Pastor Tom Rice Presbytery of Scioto Valley

Korean Pastor’s Family Retreat

We had 28 people from Korean Pastor’s families within the Synod of Covenant. Some of them from Ohio state could not participate in the retreat because schools for children was already open for the semester. We decided to have the retreat earlier in 2019. Many wanted to have one more day so that the decision was made for the retreat to be held July 29-31, 2019 at the same place. For our retreat, Rev. Moon Kil Cho, Associate for Korean Intercultural Congregational Support from PMA gave a lecture about the recent change of the PCUSA, and Rev. Sung Joo Park, Executive Director of the NCKPC talked about how the Korean-American churches should cope with the rapid change of denominational environment. Ms. Carol Jeon from the Board of Pension also gave us a special lecture of how pastors should prepare for their retirement.

Newsletter – September 21, 2018

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Newsletter – September 21, 2018

Grants and Scholarships are due October 1, 2018

Higher Education Scholarship

Racial Ethnic Program Grant

New Covenant Grant

Muslims and Christians: Partners or Enemies?

Open Seminar hosted by the Synod at the Annual Assembly
Friday November 2, 2018- 1:00 to 5:00 pm
At Christ Presbyterian Church
4225 Sylvania Ave. Toledo, OH 43623

Welcome ALL Refugees

Urgent Appeal: Welcome Refugees

To: Presbyterians, Congregations, and Councils of the Synod of the Covenant
Re: WELCOME ALL REFUGEES (including Families from Iraqi and Syria)

Dear Presbyterians, Congregations, and Councils,

“For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me.” (Matthew 25:35-36)

Let us love one another, because love is from God; everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, for God is love.” (1 John 4:7-8)

“For the Lord your God is God of gods…who executes justice for the orphan and the widow, and who love the strangers, providing them food and clothing. You shall also love the stranger, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt.” (Deuteronomy 10:18-19)

In their intent to dominate, the super powers, including our United States, are responsible for causing continuous wars, unjust socio-economic systems and unjust geo-political policies. Millions of innocent people, who are victims to these conditions and wars, have had to flee their homes and families and abandon their livelihood and native countries to seek safety for themselves and their families.

Mary and Joseph also had to flee their home and country for the safety of their child.

In 2015, the Synod Assembly earmarked $100,000 to help congregations to host refugee families fleeing the intense war and destruction in Iraq and Syria and other neighboring countries in the Middle East. Our Church has been helping support the church in Iraq for the past 17 years and the church in Syria and Lebanon for the past 7 years. In fact, the Presbyterian Church has been in serving in the Middle East and Asia as early as 1820s. Because wars have forcibly displaced millions from their homes and from other neighboring countries where many have sought refuge, local and church resources have been stretched beyond thin. People seeking refuge had to flee their homeland and relocate temporarily anywhere safe in order to survive. On August 3, 2018, on the recommendation of the Peacemaking and Justice Committee, the Synod Assembly voted to expand our outreach to ALL who seek refugee in the United States, including those from Iraq and Syria.

Hospitality is the essence of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. We acknowledge that individuals and congregations have rich and different gifts, and there is so much we can do collectively and as disciples, congregations, and church councils within our Synod, especially “for such a time as this” (Esther 4:14). We hear loudly and clearly how the Spirit, through the Church and this Synod, invites us urgently to demonstrate the love and teachings of Jesus by hosting individuals and families who seek refugee and sanctuary. A host congregation may request financial assistance from the Synod to help host and show hospitality to individuals and families in need, including to refugees who have been settled by a refugee agency. Individuals, congregations, and councils are also urged to partner and become active in ecumenical and interreligious collaboration to respond with practical hospitality and genuine love.

Interested individuals, congregations, and councils may contact the Synod Executive to discern ways to respond, and/or finalize a funding proposal for financial assistance.

We have been working closely in Michigan with Samaritas ( We encourage you to work together with the Synod to explore and develop more meaningful ways and practical partnerships.

Please, do not hesitate to contact the synod should you require additional information or assistance.

Welcome Refugee Grant – Download ApplicationWelcome- 

National Council of Churches Announces April 4th A.C.T. to End Racism Rally on National Mall

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National Council of Churches Announces April 4th A.C.T. to End Racism Rally on National Mall

Alex Goss 203.260.3985 |
Steven D. Martin 202.412.4323 |

National Council of Churches Announces
April 4th A.C.T. to End Racism Rally on National Mall

Yolanda Adams, Marvin Sapp, Vashti McKenzie, DeRay Mckesson, Y’Anna Crawley, Julian DeShazier, Jennifer Harvey, Jim Wallis, Lou Gossett Jr., Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield Join Thousands from Across the Nation in Washington D.C. to End Racism

Washington, D.C. (March 15, 2018) – Today, the National Council of Churches (NCC) announced plans to hold a rally to end racism on the National Mall on April 4. The A.C.T. to End Racism Rally is the starting point of a multi-year effort, launched by NCC, to remove racism from the nation’s social fabric and bring the country together.

In remembrance of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., who inspired and challenged America to confront and put an end to racism, the rally will take place on the day the nation marks 50 years since his assassination. “We have for too long lived under the scourge of racism in our society. To begin the process of healing our nation, we as Christians must join with people of all faiths in holding ourselves accountable for our complicity, and commit to righting the wrongs,” said Jim Winkler, president of NCC.

NCC and its coalition of over 50 partners recognize that the faith community and those of moral conscience have a specific responsibility to address and eliminate racism, but also unique gifts that enable them to do so. “As we look at our society today, it is painfully evident that the soul of our nation needs healing. We must not only pray, but take concrete action to realize and achieve racial and social justice, and we cannot possibly put an end to racism unless we commit to change at all levels — including within the faith community,” said  Bishop W. Darin Moore, chair of the Governing Board for NCC.

“Christian churches, present in every town and community across the country, are both part of the problem and the solution. NCC and our partners are committed to addressing the systemic evil that many Christians and church institutions have yet to fully acknowledge,” said Rev. Dr. Sharon Watkins, Director of the Truth and Racial Justice Initiative for NCC.

Buses will bring rally-goers from across the country for the three-day event that will see thousands convene on the National Mall. Special guests at the rally include Yolanda Adams, Marvin Sapp, Bishop Vashti McKenzie, DeRay Mckesson, Y’Anna Crawley, Grammy Award-winning artist Rev. Julian DeShazier (J.Kwest), Dr. Jennifer Harvey, Dr. Jim Wallis, Lou Gossett, Jr., Rabbi Jonah Pesner, Dr. Raphael Warnock, Naeem Baig, and Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield of Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream. Additional names will be announced in the coming weeks.

The schedule of events is as follows:
  • April 3: 6:00 p.m. ET: Orthodox Christian Bridegroom Service of Holy Tuesday; 8:00 p.m. ET: Then and Now: An Ecumenical Gathering to End Racism
  • April 4: Silent March (starting near the MLK Jr. Memorial), Interfaith Service, and A.C.T. to End Racism Rally on the National Mall, 7:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. ET
  • April 5: National Day of Advocacy & Action

The rally is open to all people of faith and moral conscience. To learn more about the rally, visit:


About the National Council of Churches

The National Council of Churches is the nation’s largest ecumenical body and includes more than 45 million members. Since its founding in 1950, the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA has been the leading force for shared ecumenical witness among Christians in the United States. The NCC’s 38 member communions form a wide spectrum of Protestant, Anglican, Orthodox, Evangelical, historic African American and Living Peace churches.