OAK FOREST, IL (March 12, 2014) — Covenant Enabling Residences of Illinois celebrated its twentieth anniversary with dinner and dancing Sunday.
“The residents had a great time,” said Julie Smith, administrator.
The Covenant’s first residence for adults with developmental disabilities, Bjorklund House, received its first residents in 1994. A Covenant Companion story that year noted that there had been more than 50 applications for the 16 spots.
The need remains as great 20 years later, says Smith. When new enabling residences are established, there are always far more applications than available spots.
Residences are now located in five states, California, Florida, Michigan, and Minnesota, as well as in Illinois.
Originally an outreach of Covenant Women Ministries, the enabling residences came under the auspices of the Covenant Ministries of Benevolence.
A prayer was published as part of the Companion story:
Lord, you have been pleased to call yourself our dwelling place,
We stand in need of your provision and protection.
You also declare yourself the father to the fatherless,
strength to the weak,
protector of those who are vulnerable.
We present to you the needs of those who will live in Bjorklund House.
Give to each for whom this will be home the knowledge that they are loved by you.
May these walls be strong to protect them from harm.
May these doors be open for going out into the community and the world.
May the ones who work here by day and night
be kind and patient,
open to new ideas,
harmonious in their relationships.
Bless each one who has given skills, money, and goods to make this house a reality.
Provide those things still needed, that this may be a place that brings glory to you and fulfills the purpose for which it was built.