We are an Apostolic church
We confess the historic faith of the apostles. We believe in Jesus Christ the Son of God, our Savior and Lord. We accept the Holy Scriptures, the Old and New Testaments, as “the Word of God and the only perfect rule for faith, doctrine and conduct.”
We are a Catholic church
We see ourselves to be part of the universal church that began with Jesus’ followers and continues today.
We are a Reformation church
We stand in the mainstream of the 16th century Protestant Reformation movement which emphasized salvation by grace alone through faith alone.
We are an Evangelical church
We were grown out of the religious awakenings that touched Europe and North America in the 19th century. This classical Christian heritage had characterized us with a passion for mission, and emphasis on biblical authority, the necessity of new birth, and the advancement of benevolence and justice.
The Centrality of the Word of God
We believe the Bible – Old and New Testament – is the only perfect rule for faith, doctrine and conduct. The transforming power of the Word of God directs the church and the life of each Christian.
The Necessity of the New Birth
The Apostle Paul wrote, “If anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come” (2 Corinthians 5:17, TNIV). New birth in Christ means committing ourselves to him and receiving forgiveness, acceptance, and eternal life. New birth is only the beginning. Growing to maturity in Christ is a lifelong process for both individuals and communities of believers.
Commitment to the Whole Mission of the Church
We are a people of shared faith who come together to carry out God’s mission both far and near. This includes evangelism, Christian formation, and ministries of compassion, mercy, and justice. We follow Christ’s two central calls: the Great Commission which sends us out into all the world to make disciples, and the Great Commandment which calls us to love the Lord our God and our neighbors as ourselves.
The Church as a Fellowship of Believers
The church is not an institution, organization, or building. It is a grace-filled fellowship of believers who participate in the life and mission of Jesus Christ. It is a family of equals: as the New Testament teaches that within Christian community there is to be neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, but all are one in Christ Jesus (Galatians 3:28). As a body, we observe the sacraments of baptism and Holy Communion.
A Conscious Dependency on the Holy Spirit
The Covenant Church affirms the Trinitarian understanding of one God as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. The New Testament tells us that the Holy Spirit works both within individuals and among them – drawing hearts to Christ, assuring of salvation, enabling obedience and a continuation of Christ’s mission in the world. The Holy Spirit gives spiritual gifts to us as individuals and binds us together as Christ’s body.
The Reality of Freedom in Christ
The Apostle Paul wrote, “It is for freedom that Christ has set us free” (Galatians 5:1, TNIV). This freedom is a gift of God in Christ, and it manifests itself in a right relationship with God and others – not as an individual gift to be used selfishly, but given to serve the community and the world. This freedom means that we are set free from the power of those things that on their own tend to divide. United in Christ, we offer freedom to one another to differ on issues of belief or practice where the biblical and historical record seems to allow for a variety of interpretations of the will and purposes of God. We seek to focus on what unites us as followers of Christ, rather than on what divides us.
Taken from the Covenant Beliefs and Affirmations
The Evangelical Covenant Church is a rapidly growing multiethnic denomination in the United States and Canada with ministries on five continents of the world. Founded in 1885 by Swedish immigrants, the ECC values the Bible as the word of God, the gift of God’s grace and ever deepening spiritual life that comes through a faith with Jesus Christ, the importance of extending God’s love and compassion to a hurting world, and the strength that comes from unity within diversity.
The Evangelical Covenant Church is:
• Evangelical, but not exclusive
• Biblical, but not doctrinaire
• Traditional, but not rigid
• Congregational, but not independent
Identity and Biblical Mission
We are united by Christ in a holy covenant of churches empowered by the Holy Spirit to obey the great commandments and the great commission: to love God with all our heart, souls, strength, and mind, to love our neighbors as ourselves, and to to go into all the world and make disciples.
• To cultivate communities of worship committed to: prayer, preaching, and study of the word; the celebration of the sacraments; and fellowship across gender, race, age, culture, and class.
• To equip loving, giving, growing Christians to reach out with the good news of Jesus Christ – evangelizing the lost, ministering to those in need, and seeking justice for the oppressed.