Coming soon: Lenten interfaith sermon series

An invitation from Bob Henderson

For Lent, we will engage in all the standard Lenten practices, but this year we’ll engage in a unique sermon series across faith traditions, exploring both our commonalities as well as our particularities.

These sermons will explore sacred texts across faith traditions, as I engage Imam Atef Chaudhry, ordained Buddhist minister Rev. Grace Burford and Rabbi Dusty Klass in conversations on the subject of Salvation.

I’m particularly excited about this series, as navigating across difference is an essential Christian trait, one Jesus embraced fully in his life and ministry. You’ll hear more soon, but I hope you’ll plan to spend the Lenten season in worship.

  • March 10: Introduction, Christianity: Interfaith from the Beginning
  • March 17: "Islam: God, Isaac and Ishmael" with Imam Atif Chaudhry
  • March 24: "Buddhism: Suffering, Pain and Faith" with Rev. Grace Burford
  • April 7: "Judaism: Promises, Promises" with Rabbi Dusty Klass
  • April 14, Palm Sunday: Conclusion, Christianity: Reformer or Revolutionary?

Meet our guests

Imam Atif Chaudhry grew up in New Jersey, where he completed his memorization of the Holy Qur’an at an early age. As a young adult Atif traveled to Pakistan and studied in the Islamic Seminary of Darul Uloom Muhammadiya Ghausia for two years, and then studied Shari’ah sciences as well as law in the International Islamic University of Islamabad for five years.

Since March 2014, Imam Atif has been the Imam of the Islamic Society of Greater Charlotte, where he teaches several classes, focuses on community-building, and gives lectures on Islamic topics.

Rev. Grace Burford, an ordained Buddhist minister, is Davidson College's new associate chaplain. She has been a practicing Buddhist since her own undergraduate days at Swarthmore College. She holds a doctorate from Northwestern University in the history and literature of religions.

In addition to providing a Buddhist presence on campus, Burford focuses on interfaith work in the newly created position. As the college's first chaplain from an Eastern tradition, she brings new perspectives and practices that will be meaningful to an ever-more spiritually diverse college community, including many who don't identify with any religious tradition.

Rabbi Dusty Klass was born and raised in Seattle. She completed her undergraduate work at University of California, Santa Barbara and spent her junior year abroad in Dublin, Ireland.

Before entering rabbinic school, Rabbi Klass spent two years as NFTY-SoCAL Regional Advisor, supporting and guiding teen leaders of the Reform Jewish youth movement. She was ordained from the Los Angeles campus of Hebrew Union College – Jewish Institute of Religion with masters degrees in Hebrew Letters and Jewish Educational Leadership.

Rabbi Klass is passionate about youth work, social justice, and meeting people where they're at.

Special services in Lent/Holy Week

  • Ash Wednesday, March 6, Noon in Chapel and 7 p.m. in Sanctuary
  • Youth Sunday, March 31
  • Maundy Thursday, April 18, 7 p.m.
  • Good Friday, April 19, 7 p.m.
  • Children's Easter Worship, Saturday, April 20, 10 a.m.
  • Easter Sunday, 8:45 a.m. Chapel, 9:30 Sanctuary, 11 a.m. Sanctuary, 11 a.m. Fellowship Hall

Special music in Lent

  • March 17: Angelus & Chorister anthem at 11 a.m. traditional
  • April 7: Wingate University Choir at 11 a.m. traditional
  • April 14, Palm Sunday: Angelus & Chorister anthem at 11 a.m. traditional
  • April 18: Maundy Thursday worship at 7 p.m.

Lenten devotional series

Click here to subscribe! This year, we’re marrying the theme of the devotional - New Every Morning: Waking Up with Wonder - to an adult education offering at Open Table on Wednesday evenings. 

As longer days offer the grace of growing light, I invite you to join Covenant friends on a Lenten journey to wake up with wonder and enjoy God’s mercies anew each morning. There will be ample opportunities to do so in worship, service, fellowship and shared study. In addition to these things, the Covenant pastoral staff offers a simple weekday devotional as one way to anchor your days. You can sign up to receive this in your inbox or pick up a paper copy in the narthex or church office beginning Ash Wednesday, March 6. 

Each weekday, you’ll find a brief prayer with which you can begin and end your devotional time. On Mondays, you’ll find an overview to the week’s theme. Tuesday through Friday, you’ll find passages from scripture that explore this theme. Each Wednesday evening from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m., the member of the pastoral staff writing for the week will serve as a guide for an hour’s Bible study and spiritual reflection. You can drop in for any of these live sessions without RSVP in Fellowship Hall Room 207.

We hope you enjoy a beautiful Lent filled with new mercies each morning.

Jessica Patchett
Senior Associate Minister

Serve God and each other

  • Kinship Project: Learn how God calls us to build relationships with those who are marginalized. Kinship Project will meet every Tuesday in March in conjunction with Room in the Inn. We'll also participate in opening and closing retreats on March 3 and April 2. We will take part in a book study on radical kinship co-facilitated by Kim Moseley, licensed counselor. Get connected here.

  • Habitat build: Our congregation was one of seven founding churches of Habitat Charlotte 35 years ago. This spring, we will do a full house build lasting 13 days. See the schedule and sign up here.

Connect with God's creation

  • Everybody needs beauty as well as bread, places to play in and pray in, where nature may heal and give strength to the body and soul.” - John Muir. 

    Hike with Covenant: Join Covenant friends and families for one or all of the quarterly hikes planned for 2019. Led by Lauren Sawyers and Grady Moseley, the hikes are accessible for all ages and skill levels. We'll start at Kings Mountain State Park on Saturday, March 2 at 9 a.m. (Or meet at Covenant at 8 a.m. to carpool). See the full schedule here.