February 26, 2023

Worship live on Sundays in person,
or on YouTube at 10:45 am.

Children’s Sunday School for ages K-7th grade at 9:30 am in-person.
Faith Forum (adult Sunday School) at 9:30 am in person and on Zoom.


led by Erin


from Psalm 32:8-11

Leader: I will instruct you and teach you the way you should go;
    I will counsel you with my eye upon you.
People: Do not be like a horse or a mule, without understanding,
    whose temper must be curbed with bit and bridle,
    else it will not stay near you.

Leader:  Many are the torments of the wicked,
    but steadfast love surrounds those who trust in the Lord.
All: Be glad in the Lord and rejoice, O righteous,
    and shout for joy, all you upright in heart.

Jesu, Jesu,
Fill us with Your love, show us how to serve
The neighbors we have from You.

Kneels at the feet of his friends,
Silently washes their feet,
Master who pours out Himself for them.


Neighbors are rich and poor,
Neighbors of ev’ry race,
Neighbors are near and far away.


These are the ones we should serve,
These are the ones we should love;
All are neighbors to us and You.


Kneel at the feet of our friends,
Silently washing their feet,
This is the way we should live with You.

Covenant Hymnal, #629

Matthew 18:1-6, 15-31

At that time the disciples came to Jesus and asked, “Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” He called a child, whom He put among them, and said, “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Whoever becomes humble like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. Whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes Me.

“If any of you cause one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for you if a great millstone were fastened around your neck and you were drowned in the depth of the sea.

“If your brother or sister sins against you, go and point out the fault when the two of you are alone. If you are listened to, you have regained that one. 16 But if you are not listened to, take one or two others along with you, so that every word may be confirmed by the evidence of two or three witnesses. 17 If that person refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church, and if the offender refuses to listen even to the church, let such a one be to you as a gentile and a tax collector. 18 Truly I tell you, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven. 19 Again, truly I tell you, if two of you agree on earth about anything you ask, it will be done for you by My Father in heaven. 20 For where two or three are gathered in My name, I am there among them.”

21 Then Peter came and said to Him, “Lord, if my brother or sister sins against me, how often should I forgive? As many as seven times?” 22 Jesus said to him, “Not seven times, but, I tell you, seventy-seven times.

23 “For this reason the kingdom of heaven may be compared to a king who wished to settle accounts with his slaves. 24 When he began the reckoning, one who owed him ten thousand talents was brought to him, 25 and, as he could not pay, the lord ordered him to be sold, together with his wife and children and all his possessions and payment to be made. 26 So the slave fell on his knees before him, saying, ‘Have patience with me, and I will pay you everything.’ 27 And out of pity for him, the lord of that slave released him and forgave him the debt. 28 But that same slave, as he went out, came upon one of his fellow slaves who owed him a hundred denarii, and seizing him by the throat he said, ‘Pay what you owe.’ 29 Then his fellow slave fell down and pleaded with him, ‘Have patience with me, and I will pay you.’ 30 But he refused; then he went and threw him into prison until he would pay the debt. 31 When his fellow slaves saw what had happened, they were greatly distressed, and they went and reported to their lord all that had taken place. 32 Then his lord summoned him and said to him, ‘You wicked slave! I forgave you all that debt because you pleaded with me. 33 Should you not have had mercy on your fellow slave, as I had mercy on you?’ 34 And in anger his lord handed him over to be tortured until he would pay his entire debt. 35 So My heavenly Father will also do to every one of you, if you do not forgive your brother or sister from your heart.”

Reader: The word of the Lord
People: Thanks be to God!

Psalm 32:1-2

Happy are those whose transgression is forgiven,
    whose sin is covered.
Happy are those to whom the Lord imputes no iniquity
    and in whose spirit there is no deceit.

A wonderful Saviour is Jesus my Lord,
A wonderful Saviour to me,
He hideth my soul in the cleft of the rock,
Where rivers of pleasure I see.

He hideth my soul in the cleft of the rock
That shadows a dry, thirsty land;
He hideth my life in the depths of His love,
And covers me there with His hand,
And covers me there with His hand.

A wonderful Saviour is Jesus my Lord,
He takes all my burden away,
He lifts up my life, and I shall not be moved,
He gives me new strength ev’ry day.


With numberless blessings each moment He crowns
And, filled with His fullness divine,
I sing in my rapture, “O glory to God
For such a Redeemer as mine!”


When clothed in His brightness, transported I rise
To meet him in clouds of the sky,
His perfect salvation, his wonderful love,
I’ll shout with the millions on high.


Covenant Hymnal, #441

Pastor Mark

Children 6 and under are dismissed to Children’s Church in the upstairs lounge. Parents can pick up their children in the lounge after the service.

Trust in the Lord with all your heart,
Don’t lean on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge Him
And He will direct your paths.
Al-le-lu-ia, Al-le-lu-ia, and
He will direct your paths.  

Seeking Harmonious Living
Chaplain Jim Stoel

Teach us Your ways, teach us Your ways,
As we learn from one another,
Learn to love each other,
Teach us Your ways.

Teach us to give, teach us to give,
Give ourselves for one another,
Learn to love each other,
Teach us to give.

Teach us to weep, teach us to weep,
Let us weep with one another,
Learn to love each other,
Teach us to weep.

Hallelujah, hallelujah,
Let us learn from one another,
Learn to love each other,
Teach us Your ways.

CCLI Song # 7133715 Isaac Wardell | Leslie Jordan | Orlando Palmer | Paul Zach © Common Hymnal Publishing (Admin. by Integrity Music) IAMSON Productions (Admin. by Integrity Music) Integrity Worship Music (Admin. by Integrity Music) Integrity’s Alleluia! Music (Admin. by Integrity Music) Integrity’s Praise! Music (Admin. by Integrity Music) Little Way Creative (Admin. by Integrity Music) Paul Zach Publishing (Admin. by Integrity Music) PG Songs And Hymns (Admin. by Integrity Music)venant Hymnal, #355

We continue to pray for: Nikolas Arden, Messian Burgos, Frank Coszach, Vira Coszach, Pedro Gomez, Art & Rosa Hamilton, Mary McKirchy, Nona Michael and the Michael family, Shirley Nicholas, our Pastoral Search Committee, Mary Smith, and Steve Staurseth

Ministries & Mission
Cheryl & Craig Wickstrom, serving in the Democratic Republic of Congo; Covenant Mountain Mission Bible Camp

Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name.  Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.  Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us.  And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.  For Thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory forever.  Amen.

giving opportunities: ravenscov.org/giving/
Zelle® to: giving@ravenscov.org

“What Wondrous Love Is This”
led by Cynthia

Praise God from whom all blessings flow 
Praise Him all creatures here below;
Praise Him above ye heav’nly host;
Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. Amen.

Amazing grace, how sweet the sound
That saved a wretch like me
I once was lost but now I’m found
Was blind but now I see so clearly

Hallelujah, grace like rain falls down on me
Hallelujah, all my stains are washed away,
    washed away

‘Twas grace that taught my heart to fear
And grace my fears relieved
How precious did that grace appear
The hour I first believed

Hallelujah, grace like rain falls down on me
Hallelujah, all my stains are washed away,
     washed away

When we’ve been there ten thousand years
Bright shining as the sun
We’ve no less days to sing Your praise
Than when we first begun

Hallelujah, grace like rain falls down on me
Hallelujah, all my stains are washed away
     washed away (repeat)

CCLI Song # 3689877 CCLI License # 349090 Chris Collins | Edwin Othello Excell | John Newton | Todd Agnew | William W. Walker © 2003 Ardent/Koala Music (Admin. by Ardent Music LLC)

L: Go in peace to love and serve the Lord
P: Thanks be to God

Moderato in C
J.S. Bach
led by Cynthia

We’ll be back here next Sunday. We hope you can join us. Information on ravenscov.org.

Worship update
The Leadership Team of Ravenswood Covenant Church recommends mask use during services, but this is not mandatory.

Ravenswood Covenant livestreams worship each week on YouTube, so Sunday morning worship is accessible to anyone who has Internet access.

Our Guest Preacher
Today’s guest preacher is Jim Stoel, a retired chaplain who lives with his wife Esther near Grand Rapids, MI. Jim and Esther are the parents of Erin Stoel and Dana Jackson, and the grandparents of Leah, Ryan, and Kara Jackson.

Easter lilies
This is the time of year to think about ordering lilies to decorate the front of the church on Easter Sunday while also honoring or memorializing loved ones.

If you would like, you can honor or memorialize loved ones by giving a donation to the church to help offset the cost of these flowers. If you choose to do so, please contact the church office at 773-784-7091 or at office@ravenscov.org to indicate who you would like to honor or memorialize. Alternatively, there will be an order form that you can fill out in the narthex on Sundays. The order deadline is Sunday, March 18. You may take your flowers home after the service on Easter Sunday.

Choir resumes for Easter season
The church choir is now rehearsing in preparation for the Lenten and Easter seasons. It isn’t too late to join! Choir rehearsal is at 8:30 am on Sunday mornings in the sanctuary. Everyone is encouraged to participate, regardless of experience or music-reading ability.

Community Dinners
Thursday night community dinners are our main community gathering occasions during the work week. Our next community dinner date will be on Thursday, March 9. The suggested donation for the dinner is $5 for individuals and $10 for families.

MInistry update from Renee Nicholas
Many thanks to the people of Ravenswood for your prayers and support towards God’s ministry among healthcare students and faculty! Your partnership is helping healthcare students and faculty engage with the gospel and be equipped to follow Jesus with their whole lives. Thank you! 

Trevor Nicholas piece to premiere at Ravinia in March
Save the date for March 4 at 7 pm at Ravinia’s Bennett Gordon Hall, as Trevor Nicholas will be premiering a new piece with the Senn Arts vocalists in collaboration with Cor Cantiamo and Dr. Eric Johnson from Northern Illinois University. The tickets are free, but you must have one to attend the concert. You can obtain the tickets via this link. We would love to have our Ravenswood friends join us for this fun evening of music!

J. David Wood (1929-2023)
J. David Wood, retired Covenant missionary and pastor and the father of Judy Edstrom, died on February 14 in Rockford, IL at the age of 93. He was a graduate of Wheaton College, North Park Theological Seminary, and Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary, and he and his wife Rachel served as Covenant missionaries for 25 years in the Democratic Republic of Congo (known as Zaire for most of their years on the field). He served as a teacher on the Covenant mission field in the country’s Equateur province and at the Protestant seminary in the capital city of Kinshasa.

While their three children were in college at North Park from 1979 to 1987, David and Rachel lived in the States, where he served as the pastor of Zion Covenant Church in Ellsworth, WI. In 1987 the Woods returned to Congo, where they served until retirement. They retired to Rockford, where David served as the visitation pastor at Bethesda Covenant Church. Rachel preceded David in death in 2009.

David is survived by three children, six grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren. A memorial service to celebrate the life of J. David Wood will be held at 11 am, Saturday, March 18, 2023, at Bethesda Covenant Church, 2101 E. State St., Rockford, IL. Visitation will take place before the service at 10 am, and a reception at the church will follow the service. Interment will take place this summer in Moose Lake, MN. In lieu of flowers, please send donations to the Paul Carlson Partnership, 8303 W. Higgins Rd., Chicago, IL 60631. Peace to his memory.

Indoor Playground
Indoor Playground is back! Our weekly cold-weather opportunity to let young children run around in our gym, play with toys, and use the bounce house has begun again. Indoor Playground will be open every Thursday afternoon from 4:30 to 5:30 pm.

Aid for Ukrainian refugees
Jeremy and Amanda Foster, who attend our church, have a direct connection to a mission that is serving refugees who have fled Ukraine following the Russian invasion. Jeremy’s parents Don and Beatrice Foster are in Hazebrouck, France as tentmaker missionaries and have prepared rooms in their home for refugees coming from Ukraine.

If you would like to donate to help the Fosters pay for extra food and supplies, please give a donation to Ravenswood Covenant that is specially designated for Ukrainian refugees. If you would like to give directly online, the website for the Fosters is https://ukraine.la-ferme-de-la-papote.com/ .

The Covenant denomination is also raising funds for Ukraine through Covenant World Relief. Here is the link if you would like to donate through the Covenant’s program. https://giving.covchurch.org/priorities-detail/ukraine-response

Thursday evening Bible study
The weekly Bible study meets Thursdays at 7 pm. We are currently studying the book of Romans. The Bible study meets in the lounge, and is also accessible by Zoom. For more information, please contact Gregory Sager in the church office at (773) 784-7091 or office@ravenscov.org

Join Zoom Meeting

The Zoom meeting ID for the Bible study:  972 871 4458
The Zoom passcode for the Bible study: 1qa3CD

Join Us in Sponsoring a Student in the NPTS SRA Program
North Park’s School of Restorative Arts offers a MA in Christian Ministry and Restorative Arts, allowing free and incarcerated students to study together. This unique degree program is designed to prepare individuals for ministries of restoration in contexts susceptible to violence and includes courses in trauma, race relations, nonviolent communication, conflict transformation, restorative practices, and transformative justice, in addition to Bible, theology, and history.  In partnership with the Illinois Department of Corrections, this four-year degree is currently offered at Stateville Correctional Center with 80 incarcerated men and a first cohort of 20 women at Logan Correctional Center.

We, Ravenswood Covenant Church, have partnered with North Park Theological Seminary by committing to sponsor a student in this program. To help us support an SRA student please send a check to church or give online and in the memo line write: “SRA Sponsorship.”

RECC preaching schedule for March
March 5: Eliza Stiles
March 12: Pastor Mark
March 19: T.R. Ahlstrom
March 26: Pastor Mark

Scripture for next Sunday
Matthew 20:1-16
Psalm 16:5-8

Art Used in this Bulletin: Steve Erspamer, SM
Clip Art for Year A © 1992, Archdiocese of Chicago.

Our church exists to love and worship God, and love and care for others. By God’s grace, we commit to help people find and follow Jesus Christ through the guidance of His Spirit and His word.

"With what can we compare the kingdom of God, or what parable will we use for it? It is like a mustard seed, which, when sown upon the ground, is the smallest of all the seeds on earth; yet when it is sown it grows up and becomes the greatest of all shrubs, and puts forth large branches, so that the birds of the air can make nests in its shade." (Mark 4:30-32 NRS)