Radical Audacious Disciples – (RAD) A Costume Party for the Whole Church Family!

Saturday October 28, 2-4pm

Come celebrate God’s radical transformation of Jesus’
Church, known as the Reformation, which began 500
years ago!

On October 31,1517, God lead Martin Luther to
bravely nail 95 complaints about his church to a
church door in Germany. Luther’s RADical challenge
to be genuine disciples of Jesus led to a recovery of
truths of Scripture that had been ignored or forgotten
for centuries!

Luther did this on All Hallow’s Eve, a day when
Christians celebrated their victory in Christ over the
devil and death. They “chased away” evil by being
joyful and victorious on the night before November 1,
a sacred day when they remembered and praised God
for all the faithful believers who had gone before

Children and Adults: please Dress as a favorite Bible
Character or historic church leader!

* Watch a short play telling the Reformation story. *
Drink Cider, Eat “Diet of Worms” cake.
* Learn other strange old stuff, like what is a “Papal
* Engage in Reformation-related games and other activities
while you pretend to be someone else for 2
*Let God speak to you about living a RAD life!

October Birthdays and Anniversaries


October 3 – Debora Amina
October 5 – Jen Mullins
October 6 – Mark Thomas
October 12 – Daniel Glassman
October 13 – Nathaniel Niyuhire
October 13 – Pastor Nancy Ebner
October 21 – John Howell
October 22 – Amanda Kenyon
October 22 – Liz Bromage
October 27 – Mafumbo Nyabenda
October 28 – Kyle Thomas
October 28 – Sue Warner
October 30 – Evangeline Nbtoyi

Art and Diane Lawler – 2

Immerse Yourself in the Bible

Yes, we’re reading the first five books of the Bible! Get a special version in the New Living Translation, without chapter and verse divisions to distract you from the story, from Pastor ($10), or read your own Bible!

The general reading schedule is: Genesis (two weeks of September), Exodus (Oct 1-15) Leviticus (October 16- 22), Numbers (October 23-Nov 1) and Deuteronomy ( Nov 2-12).

“Genesis lays the foundation for the rest of the Bible’s story. It reveals God as the world’s sovereign Creator and shows God’s intention to bring blessing to people – God’s image bearers – and for all life to thrive by living in his presence. Genesis tells about the entrance of evil into the world and the commencement of God’s struggle against evil, a theme that flows through the whole Bible.”
(Immerse Bible, p1)

October Dates to Remember

October 1 Choir resumes in the worship service
October 2 Council Prayer and Meeting
October 8 Children’s Choir Practice
October 8 Youth Hike
October 20-21 Covenant Justice Conference
October 21 Men’s Breakfast
October 22 Children’s Choir Practice
October 28 RAD Costume Party

Bible Book Clubs Back Again This Fall

Bible “Book Clubs” are back again this fall! Remember how awesome it was to read and talk about large portions of the New Testament for 8 weeks last year? This fall, small groups will read “The Beginnings,” the first five books of the Old Testament. Groups will begin on or near September 17, and end before Thanksgiving. Start your own group with family, friends, co-workers or neighbors! The Sunday night group will resume; for a schedule of others, call the church.

Message from Pastor Nancy for September

Church History is Our History!

“I love to follow Jesus, but where did the church come from?” “Why is our church the way it is?” Do you want to understand more about how Christians have followed Jesus since his Church was born on Pentecost in Acts chapter 2? This fall we will run through centuries together in an overview of church history, and specifically look at the Protestant Reformation, since October 31 will mark 500 years after Martin Luther took his stand. And, as we approach our 170th church birthday in 2018, we’ll also be looking at Covenant History and Orchard Covenant history. Past history will provide some perspective on how God is calling us to live the life of Jesus in this generation and into the future.

Bible “Book Clubs” are back again this fall!
Remember how awesome it was to read and talk about large portions of the New Testament for 8 weeks last year?
This fall, small groups will read “The Beginnings,” the first five books of the Old Testament. Groups will begin on or near September 17, and end before Thanksgiving. Start your own group with family, friends, co-workers or neighbors! The Sunday night group will resume; for a schedule of others, call the church.

Fall Schedule Starts September 17!
Sunday Sept 17 Schedule: 9:45 Sunday School for All Ages
11:00 Worship in the Sanctuary

Covenant Justice Conference
October 20-21, New Rochelle, NY
Our brothers and sisters at New York Covenant Church in New Rochelle, NY are planning their 5th “Covenant Justice Conference” and we’d like to send a group from OCC. Also, our Council members are reading their recommended book, The Myth Of Equality, by Ken Wytsma (IVP). If you want to read the book too, I can get one at a discounted price. And if God is nudging you to attend the conference, please let me know!

I have a Question:

How do Christians respond to divisive public issues?
When our conscience as followers of Jesus is awakened and bothered by a public event, do we need to stay silent, in order to not offend anyone? Silence seems the easiest approach, but at times, after prayer and reflection, we must have the courage to do the difficult thing, and speak. God will give us wisdom.
Some Covenant churches have shared their statements about the recent intimidating and violent displays of hatred and racism in Charlottesville, Virginia. Here are two of them:

First Covenant Church, Minneapolis, Minnesota: As we reflect on the show of hatred and racism in Charlottesville, we are deepened in our commitment to the gospel of Christ, which affirms that all are made in the image of God. We stand against racism and pray for the coming of God’s kingdom here on earth as in heaven. May God’s Spirit open our hearts to see each other as beloved, especially as and whenever racism and other prejudices cloud our vision.

Trinity Covenant Church, Livingston, New Jersey: All people are made in the image of God! We deplore the assertion that some are made to serve others out of their inferiority; rather we embrace our Savior who taught us by his own example to love and serve all. We grieve with those who lost loved ones in the violence in Charlottesville. We pray for all who are recovering from their injuries. We declare the equal value of all and repudiate white supremacy in all its forms. And we do pray for God to overcome the hurts, fears, wounds, resentments, furies, injustices of all in our nation with justice, mercy, and love. May we be part of God’s answer to our prayers.

Orchard Covenant, What would WE say?

See you in church! Pastor Nancy Ebner

Bottle Drive to Benefit Kids of Muhudu Village

Our kids are doing a can and bottle drive to benefit kids in Muhudu village. Everyone needs to bring in cans and bottles and deposit them in receptacles in the Community Hall. Also, “fill the zebra” is still happening.

We are sending our kids to camp this summer, so please consider making a contribution. Perhaps you could even sponsor one of our kids. Squanto rules!

Welcoming the Community

We warmly welcome all who come.

● We help people re-settle in this community from places of war and conflict. This involves many aspects of life at home and in the community.

● We change what we do and how we do it to accommodate differences.

● We want to treat everyone as equal in God’s sight, and invite people equally into the ministry of the church.

● Our ACTS tutoring program provides support for at-risk students. This is an act of justice, as statistics show that children who read at grade level or above are less likely to get into trouble with the law.

● Our Muhudu Orphans ministry provides nutrition and education for orphans in Kenya with no options in life before Mama Esther started feeding the orphans.

● We support healthy inter-faith relationships – Non-violence walks

● After the Jewish Community Center and the Islamic Society experienced hate crimes, we showed up at community events to support and build understanding.

We provide space for 12 step programs;
● Study the Bible together,
● Talk about Jesus,
● We want to be brothers and sisters in Christ, all equal in
● God’s sight,
● Calling people to commitment – to Jesus – to the church.

Love Mercy, Do Justice by Pastor Nancy

On May 16 I went to a lunch meeting with the Rev. Kreig Gamelgard, our East Coast Director of Church Vitality, and about ten other pastors from the East Coast Conference. We had all responded with interest to an inquiry about one of the Covenant’s five mission priorities: to Love Mercy, and Do Justice. This was the “LMDJ” lunch.

We talked about our need to come together on God’s biblical call, to Love Mer-cy, and Do Justice, in the East Coast Conference. We were invited to consider joining a group that is in formation, called the Covenant Justice Coalition. This will be an East Coast coalition of churches and pastors, who will work together to follow Jesus in learning and sharing LMDJ experiences together, and encour-aging our whole conference in creating a more just and compassionate world.

The coalition will operate on a priority of engaging Scripture together, to devel-op Jesus’ attitude and mind, and act on that, not just one political view or anoth-er. “Where is it Written?” The desire is to first follow Jesus’ example and call to heal injustice in our communities and world.
I pray that soon we’ll see answers to the prophet Amos’ call: Let justice roll down like rivers; righteousness like an ever-flowing stream! (Amos 5:24)

Our Council will discuss our possible involvement. I believe, whether or not we decide to officially join this coalition, that we are already a part of this LMDJ movement!

In April Dave and Toni Wapner, and Francis and Alice Nakitare attended the Conference Annual meeting. Alice told us she was impressed by mercy and justice projects other churches are doing in their communities. She also pointed out that we do a LOT of justice work ourselves! God is building the Kingdom here every day through our actions:

* Re-settlement of people from places of war and violence;
* Cross-cultural community and welcome
* ACTS tutoring and other education support work here in Springfield
* Muhudu Orphans ministry provides nutrition and education and saves lives;
* Participate in community non-violence walks; support our Jewish and Islamic neighbors after hate crimes, and more.

We are far from perfect; and will always have much to learn! But Christian wit-ness must include visible, practical, and just expressions of care and connection. Let’s keep following Jesus! (Zach 4:6) Not by might, not by power, but by my Spirit,” says the Lord… Please Jesus, build your kingdom here!

See you in church! Pastor Nancy Ebner

Making a Difference in Muhudu

It is over ten years since the Muhudu feeding program was started by Mama Esther and her family. The first group of children to receive uniforms from a graceful member in Orchard Covenant Church in 2009 are now in Grade 8. They are going to be candidates at the end of 2017. Next year they will be joining High School.

The year 2016 has been full of joy. The number of orphans totaled 102 in school. They are always accompanied by their younger siblings whose number fluctuates.
All below sponsored by Orchard Covenant Church:

Feeding Program

The children receive lunch three days a week:
1. Beans and corn.
2. Rice and corn. Juice.

Uniforms for 102

The children received uniforms made by Joyce and the
women’s group.


52 girls received much needed toiletries to last them six


The entire community fetches water from the water pump which was funded by Pastor Nancy and the Orchard Covenant Church. The water is pumped into the tank and the people are able to fetch the water in the morning and evening.

High school students
The following students have been receiving sponsorship
and have graduated high school.

1. Mary Masiche
2. Line Khabeyi
3. Tracy Andisi
4. Kevin Shitoko
Hastins Memba

The following are still in High school;
1. Moses Anwoko
2. Mariam Munyasia
3. Purity Minayo
4. Bryan Anyula
One student Sharon is a 3rd year (Junior) at University of