News Briefs: Why One Church Joined the ECC, ‘Wonderful Life’ Actress to Speak at Covenant Shores


Theological Diversity, Mission Attracts Affiliating Church

YAKIMA, WA (December 16, 2013) — The former Westminster Presbyterian Church changed its name recently to Yakima Covenant Church. The congregation voted in June to leave the Presbyterian Church USA (PCUSA).

Pastor Duncan MacLeod had said earlier this year that the church was seeking to join the Covenant because of the denomination’s values that respect theological differences and its emphasis on reaching a changing culture.

The PCUSA theological struggles had become too divisive, MacLeod said, explaining in a church newsletter that, “we see in the Evangelical Covenant Church an environment where we can continue to seek Christ together while maintaining a witness of unity in spite of our diversity of theological viewpoints.”

MacLeod added that the Presbyterian denominational structures “have done little to serve this church in the vital issues of missional transformation. If we are to continue to be a vital expression of the kingdom of God in this region, we have work to do as we seek to faithfully respond to the emerging challenges of a post-Christendom/post-denominational reality. We think that the Evangelical Covenant Church has much to offer member churches in this regard, and we look forward to learning from them.”


Bethany Covenant to Host Worship and the Arts Conference

SEATTLE, WA (December 16, 2013) — Bethany Community Covenant Church will host the (Trans)Formation Worship Conference January 17-18 in Seattle.

Todd Johnson, professor at Fuller Theological Seminary and a Covenant pastor, will be a presenter. The seminary and the Brehm Center at the school are presenting the event with Bethany.

The conference will focus on the question, “How do worship and the arts contribute to the (trans)formation of the church?”


‘Wonderful Life’ Actress to Speak at Covenant Shores

MERCER ISLAND, WA (December 16, 2013) — Karolyn Grimes, the six-year-old child actress who played Zuzu Bailey in the 1946 movie version of It’s a Wonderful Life, will make a special appearance at Covenant Shores Retirement Community at 2 p.m. on January 6.

Grimes, now 73 years old, will talk about her “not-so-wonderful-life” when she visits the Mercer Island campus. The actress, who also appeared as Loretta Young’s daughter in the 1947 movie The Bishop’s Wife, was 12 years old when she lost her mother to early-onset Alzheimer’s disease. Two years later, her father was killed in an automobile accident. Thus began a series of devastating tragedies in Grimes’s life, including the suicide of her 18-year-old son.

Grimes will also sign copies of her new book, Celebrating It’s a Wonderful Life: How the Movie’s Message of Hope Lives On.

Nationally accredited Covenant Shores is one of 14 retirement communities nationwide that are administered by the Skokie, Illinois–based Covenant Retirement Communities Inc., one of the nation’s largest not-for-profit senior services organizations. Covenant Retirement Communities operates in eight states and is a ministry of the Evangelical Covenant Church.




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