Church Cancels Service to Show Support for Another Congregation

Post a Comment » Written on May 6th, 2009     
Filed under: News
OBERLIN, KS (May 6, 2009) – Members of Herndon Covenant Church decided they did not want to go to their own church two Sundays ago. Instead they cancelled services in order to attend the installation service for co-pastors Sharon and Chris Nelson at the Oberlin Covenant Church.

Keith Reuther, pastor of Herndon Covenant, said the timing worked out because he was going to be in Chicago. He asked that members of the church “give generously in the offering to our sister congregation.”

About 40 people – sixty percent of the church – attended the installation. “I have never seen anything like that,” says Rick Mylander, associate superintendent of the Midwest Conference of the Evangelical Covenant Church. Representatives from Lund Covenant Church in Dresden, Kansas, also attended.

“It was such an unusual thing, so that felt really special,” says Sharon Nelson.

Members of the visiting congregation participated in the services as they prayed for the couple. Having so many people attend also was an inspiration to the Oberlin congregation, says Chris. The church has a regular attendance of about 40.

Oberlin is the first full-time pastorate for Chris and Sharon, who say they are excited to start their new ministry. “The thing that really stood out for both Sharon and me was the church’s sense of openness to what God could do,” Chris says.

He grew up in Paxton, Illinois, a small town, and expects an easy adjustment to living in the small town located in northwestern Kansas, just south of the Nebraska border.

Sharon, however, was born and raised in the area around San Francisco. “It’s a big change,” she says, adding that she is excited about her new community. “We were just really attracted to the people.”

The Herndon church has suspended its services before. Last summer, they suspended services 11 of the 14 Sundays so they could lead worship at area nursing homes. Click here to read more about that experience.

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