Music & a visit from some friends

Lord, When We Praise You with Glorious Music
by Bryan Jeffrey Leach
led by Cynthia & Dana

Including an update from Covenant Harbor Bible Camp


Wheresoe’er I roam, through valleys dreary,
Over mountains or in pathless wood,
Ever with me is a Friend to cheer me,
Warning, comforting as none else could.
‘Tis the Shepherd, who once dying, bleeding,
Now through all eternity shall live.
Jesus leads his flock, protecting, feeding,
And the tenderest care does give.

All my needs eternally supplying,
All in all to me that Friend shall be;
Every thing for which my heart is sighing,
Jesus knows and helps me lovingly.
Though I often feel forsaken, lonely,
He is ever near, for he did say:
“I am with you always,” and this only
Gives me courage on my way.

Pierced heart, with love o’er flowing, guide me,
Help me through life’s desert find my way;
Let my faith, no matter what betide me,
Find assurance in your wounds each day.
To your presence–for this life is fleeting
Take me, wash my garments in your blood;
And with Thomas may I, at your meeting,
Cry with joy, “My Lord and God!”

Words: Carl Olof Rosenius, 1816-1868; Music Victor O. Peterson, 1864-1929

“The Gospel…is news of the friendship extended to us by the Source of life in all the astonishing fullness of that divine self-disclosure in Jesus. It is the news that God’s friendship is meant not only for us but for all creation.” —Jean C. Lambert 1940-2008

Jonah 3:10-4:11

3:10 When God saw what they did, how they turned from their evil ways, God changed his mind about the calamity that he had said he would bring upon them; and he did not do it.

4:1But this was very displeasing to Jonah, and he became angry. He prayed to the Lord and said, “O Lord! Is not this what I said while I was still in my own country? That is why I fled to Tarshish at the beginning; for I knew that you are a gracious God and merciful, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love, and ready to relent from punishing. And now, O Lord, please take my life from me, for it is better for me to die than to live.” And the Lord said, “Is it right for you to be angry?” Then Jonah went out of the city and sat down east of the city, and made a booth for himself there. He sat under it in the shade, waiting to see what would become of the city.

The Lord God appointed a bush, and made it come up over Jonah, to give shade over his head, to save him from his discomfort; so Jonah was very happy about the bush. But when dawn came up the next day, God appointed a worm that attacked the bush, so that it withered. When the sun rose, God prepared a sultry east wind, and the sun beat down on the head of Jonah so that he was faint and asked that he might die. He said, “It is better for me to die than to live.”

But God said to Jonah, “Is it right for you to be angry about the bush?” And he said, “Yes, angry enough to die.” 10 Then the Lord said, “You are concerned about the bush, for which you did not labor and which you did not grow; it came into being in a night and perished in a night. 11 And should I not be concerned about Nineveh, that great city, in which there are more than a hundred and twenty thousand persons who do not know their right hand from their left, and also many animals?”

From the ends of the earth
From the ends of the earth
From the depths of the sea
From the depths of the sea
From the heights of the heavens
From the heights of the heavens
[together] Your name be praised.

From the hearts of the weak
From the hearts of the weak
From the shouts of the strong
From the shouts of the strong
From the lips of all people
From the lips of all people
[together] This song we raise, Lord.

Throughout the endless ages
You will be crowned with praises,
Lord, most high;
Exalted in every nation,
Sov’reign of all creation,
Lord most high, be magnified.

Matthew 20:1-16

 “For the kingdom of heaven is like a landowner who went out early in the morning to hire laborers for his vineyard. After agreeing with the laborers for the usual daily wage, he sent them into his vineyard. When he went out about nine o’clock, he saw others standing idle in the marketplace; and he said to them, ‘You also go into the vineyard, and I will pay you whatever is right.’ So they went. When he went out again about noon and about three o’clock, he did the same. And about five o’clock he went out and found others standing around; and he said to them, ‘Why are you standing here idle all day?’ They said to him, ‘Because no one has hired us.’ He said to them, ‘You also go into the vineyard.’ When evening came, the owner of the vineyard said to his manager, ‘Call the laborers and give them their pay, beginning with the last and then going to the first.’ When those hired about five o’clock came, each of them received the usual daily wage. 10 Now when the first came, they thought they would receive more; but each of them also received the usual daily wage. 11 And when they received it, they grumbled against the landowner, 12 saying, ‘These last worked only one hour, and you have made them equal to us who have borne the burden of the day and the scorching heat.’ 13 But he replied to one of them, ‘Friend, I am doing you no wrong; did you not agree with me for the usual daily wage? 14 Take what belongs to you and go; I choose to give to this last the same as I give to you. 15 Am I not allowed to do what I choose with what belongs to me? Or are you envious because I am generous?’16 So the last will be first, and the first will be last.”

Leader: The Word of the Lord
People: Thanks be to God

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.
Alleluia, alleluia,
And he will direct your paths.

From Barb & Steve Swanson
Serve Globally, The Evangelical Covenant Church

Ok. That’s totally bogus!
Pastor Phil, working with Jonah & Matthew 20

Before I spoke a word
You were singing over me
You have been so so good to me
Before I took a breath
You breathed Your life in me
You have been so so kind to me

(And) O the overwhelming never-ending
Reckless Love of God
O it chases me down
fights ’til I’m found
Leaves the ninety-nine
I couldn’t earn it
I don’t deserve it
Still You give Yourself away
O the overwhelming never-ending
Reckless Love of God yeah

When I was Your foe still
Your love fought for me
You have been so so good to me
When I felt no worth
You paid it all for me
You have been so so kind to me

There’s no shadow You won’t light up
Mountain You won’t climb up
Coming after me
There’s no wall You won’t kick down
Lie You won’t tear down
Coming after me

CCLI Song # 7089641 CCLI License # 349090
Caleb Culver | Cory Asbury | Ran Jackson © 2017 Cory Asbury Publishing

Folks We Are Praying For:

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.

Church family who work in and around hospitals & nursing homes:
Alex A, Kyra A, Hannah A, Sam A, Linda C, Carl G, Katie G, Eric H, Rachel H, Chona I, Abby H, Dana J, Bryan J, Kari J, Neal J, Eric S, Don T.

(If we missed any people’s names above please let us know.)

We continue to pray for: Nikolas Arden, Katie Collier, Dan Erickson, Art and Rosa Hamilton, Shirley Nicholas, Paul Mounce, Jane Auger, Joyce Andrews, Steve Hoden, Mary Spriggs, the family of Joe Heikes, the Morales/Randall family.

Ministries & Mission
Greg and Kristi Fauss, serving in Germany; Carlos and Karen Feijoo, serving in Ecuador

Largo, by Frederick Chopin.
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. 


Blessed assurance, Jesus is mine!
O what a foretaste of glory divine!
Heir of salvation, purchase of God,
Born of his Spirit, washed in his blood.

This is my story, this is my song,
Praising my Savior all the day long;
This is my story, this is my song,
Praising my Savior all the day long.

Perfect submission, perfect delight,
Visions of rapture now burst on my sight;
Angels descending bring from above
Echoes of mercy, whispers of love.

Perfect submission, all is at rest,
I in my Savior am happy and blest;
Watching and waiting, looking above,
Filled with his goodness, lost in his love.

Fanny J. Crosby, 1820-1915


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

Prelude in C by J.S. Bach
led by Cynthia

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

… as we go out to love and serve the Lord:
Come Thou Found of Every Blessing, AxiomBrass

Come, thou Fount of every blessing
Tune my heart to sing thy grace;
Streams of mercy, never ceasing
Call for songs of loudest praise.
Teach mes ome melodious sonnet,
Sung by flaming tongues above.
Praise the mount! I’m fixed upon it,
Mount of thy redeeming love.

Here I raise to thee an altar,
Hither by thy help I’m come;
And I hope, by thy good pleasure,
Safely to arrive at home.
Jesus sought me when a stranger,
Wand’ring from the fold of God;
He, to rescue me from danger,
Interposed his precious blood.

O to grace how great a debtor
Daily I’m constrained to be!
Let thy goodness, like a fetter,
Bind my wandering heart to thee,
Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it,
Prone to leave the God I love;
Here’s my heart, O take and seal it,
Seal it for thy courts above.

Max & Janelle:

What about the last Shall be first
Tell me the lost Shall be found
One day the least shall be lifted
Set up on high ground

I jumped out of bed
I must have slept late
Repairs to the tracks
And my train was delayed
I need a break
But I’ll never quit trying
I’m out here in the rain
At the end of the line

So what about the last | Shall be first
Tell me the lost | Shall be found
One day the least shall be lifted
Set up on high ground

An accident ahead
Rerouted my way
Driving all alone
In an unfamiliar state
I need a break
But I’ll never quit trying
I’m out here on the road
Till I recognize a sign

But what about the last | Shall be first
Tell me the lost | Shall be found
One day the least shall be lifted
Set up on high ground

The hurricane arrived…
The waters did rise
And the waters remained
Watching everything sink
And all wash away
I need a break
But I’ll never quit trying
I’m stuck here on the roof
Just praying to keep dry

And oh what about the last Shall be first
Tell me the lost Shall be found
One day the least shall be lifted
Set up on high ground

Book discussion
On Tuesday, September 29 at 7 pm, we will conclude discussion of The Color of Compromise by Jemar Tisby on Zoom by looking at chapters 10 thru the end of the book. Tisby focuses on the history of the American church to present day in regards to race relations. If you don’t have the book and happen to have Amazon Prime, there is a video series where the author Jemar Tisby talks through each chapter. The videos are about 20 minutes each. Contact Pastor Denise if you have any questions. 

Zoom Bible Study
Our Thursday night Bible study has resumed meeting. For the next few weeks we will be going through the book of Ruth. The Bible study meets every Thursday at 6:30 pm via Zoom, and if you are not conversant with Zoom, don’t let that stop you! We can teach you how to activate Zoom so that you can take part. There are also a limited number of spaces available for those who wish to attend the Bible study in person in the lounge using social-distancing protocols. If you’re interested, please contact Gregory Sager in the church office at or at 773-784-7091.

Prayer meeting dates change
The church’s weekly prayer meeting that gathers on Monday nights is moving to an every-other-week format for the time being, so the next meeting will be a week from Monday (September 28). This is to reduce the scheduling conflict between the prayer meeting and RECC’s ongoing women’s prayer circle that has been convening daily during the COVID-19 pandemic. As long as attendance remains low enough to accommodate the meeting under the church’s current guidelines, it will be held live in the Nelson Lounge, beginning at 7 pm. Quarantine protocols (masks and social distancing) are required.

Covenant Youth Collision resumes
Covenant Youth Collision is back. CYC’s leaders are excited to kick off fall programming with a meeting at the Nina Larson House
(4159 N. Monticello Ave.) this Thursday, September 24 from 6:30-8 pm.  All current high school students are invited to hang out and learn more about CYC and how they can be an active part of discipleship. Covenant Youth Collision is an organization sponsored by and serving North Side and north suburban Covenant churches, enabling smaller churches like ours to offer bigger and better programming, discipleship training, and a broader range of peers for their respective youth groups.

Sunday School begins today
Our church’s Sunday School classes begin today. All Sunday School classes, whether for children or adults, will meet via Zoom. Children’s Sunday School and Confirmation classes are approximately 30-40 minutes long, while the length of Faith Forum (adult Sunday School) classes may vary. Zoom links for the children’s Sunday School and Confirmation classes will be emailed to parents and not posted on public sites. The Zoom link for Faith Forum will be made available via the church website and in the Thursday prayer email.

9:30 am Sundays — Grades 1 & 2 with Eli and Lorri Yurick
9:30 am Sundays — Faith Forum with LeRoy Carlson and Dave Oseland
12 pm Sundays — Ages 3 thru Kindergarten with Danielle and Phil Hoden
1 pm Sundays — Grades 3 thru 6 with Bekah Carlson and Neil Johnson
4:30 pm Sundays — Confirmation Class with Pastor Phil and Pastor Denise.

Prayer meeting dates change
The church’s weekly prayer meeting that gathers on Monday nights is changing to a new format for the time being. The prayer meeting will now meet only on the second and fourth Mondays of the month, so the next meeting will be a week from Monday (September 28). This is to reduce the scheduling conflict between the prayer meeting and RECC’s ongoing women’s prayer circle that has been convening daily during the COVID-19 pandemic. As long as attendance remains low enough to accommodate the meeting under the church’s current guidelines, it will be held live in the Nelson Lounge, beginning at 7 pm. Quarantine protocols (masks and social distancing) are required.

New issue available
The fall 2020 issue of the Covenant Home Altar, the daily prayer journal of the Evangelical Covenant Church, is now available for free. You may pick up a copy at church during business hours, or request that the church office mail you a copy.

Vernon Gustafson, 1926-2020
Long-time Ravenswood Covenant member Vernon E. “Gus” Gustafson age 93, of Algonquin, IL passed away in Batavia, IL on September 17, 2020, one day short of his 94th birthday.

He was born in Harcourt, IA on September 18, 1926 to Victor and Hulda Gustafson. He was a proud United States Army Air Corps veteran, serving during WWII. Vernon attended North Park Junior College, where he received his associate’s degree. He received his bachelor’s degree from Lake Forest College in 1951. He was retired from McCormick & Co in Baltimore, MD and at the time of his death he was a member of Fox Valley Community Church in West Dundee, IL.

Vernon is survived by his wife, Elaine (Stenmark) Gustafson; his son, retired Chicago Fire Department firefighterTom (Carrie) Gustafson and his daughter, Janet (Scott) Baruch; his grandchildren, Jeffrey (Adrienne) Gustafson, Kristin (Christopher) Pressley, Peter (Erin) Gustafson, Joseph Baruch and Jackson Baruch; his great-grandchildren, Christopher Jr., Myles, Jasmine, Maddison and Elizabeth; his brother Leland (Diane) Gustafson and his former daughter-in-law, Mary Gustafson. Vernon was preceded in death by his sister Mildred (Robert) Bergstrom and his brother, Lauren (the late Patty) Gustafson.

In lieu of flowers, memorial in memory of Vernon may be made to Covenant Harbor Bible Camp, 1724 Main St., Lake Geneva, WI 53147, JDRF, 1026 A Ave NE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52402, or Covenant Living at Michealsen, 831 N. Batavia Ave., Batavia, IL 60510.

Friends are invited to meet with the family for a public visitation on Wednesday, September 23, 2020 from 9:00 AM to 10:00 AM with a funeral service to begin at 10:00 AM in the chapel of the Willow Funeral Home, 1415 W. Algonquin Rd., (one mile west of Rt. 31) in Algonquin. Interment will follow at Abraham Lincoln National Cemetery, 20953 W. Hoff Rd., Elwood, IL, with full military honors under the auspices of the U.S. Air Force.

Peace to his memory.

MOPS is back
Ravenswood Covenant’s MOPS group continues to meet via Zoom during this time of social distancing. MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) is a ministry devoted to the needs and concerns of mothers with children under school age. Contact Pastor Denise for the date of the next MOPS meeting and the Zoom link. Mothers with babies to elementary-age children are encouraged to connect with one another.

Farmers market update
Our farmers market continues to meet every Wednesday afternoon in our church’s parking lot. Although the city’s social-distancing and food-handling restrictions during the pandemic are limiting what the market can offer in terms of crowd size, vendors, and programming, we nevertheless continue to welcome our community back into our space for what has become a tradition for many of our neighbors. Right now, our object is to continue re-establishing our presence as a farmers market and to welcome people back into the routine of frequenting our vendors every Wednesday afternoon and early evening. The turnout is improving from week to week, and we have re-introduced food trucks as part of our market for the first time this summer. It’s good to welcome our neighbors and vendors back for another summer, restrictions or not!

Thursday night dinners
Chef Bobby, Hannah, Marlene, and Mary are once again providing our church’s Thursday night community dinners on an every-other-week basis. The dinners are sign-up-and-pick-up only. The next dinner will be a week from this Thursday. Contact the church office to be put on the sign-up email list, and follow the prayer email and the Sunday bulletin on the church’s website at for more details.

Prayer requests
A group of women in our church are meeting every night at 7 pm via phone calls and texts in order to keep our various needs before God in prayer. They are asking the congregation to bring their needs to them to be lifted up in prayer as part of this evening prayer time. If you have any needs that you would like to have added to their prayer list, please contact the church office.

Free masks available
The church is offering free masks to anyone in the congregation who is in need of one. If you would like, you may make a donation to our benevolence fund when you come to the church building to pick yours up. Please contact the church office at or 773-396-6175 for more information.

We need your (in worship) videos and pictures
As part of our ongoing efforts to stay connected with each other during this time of physical separation, we’re asking members and friends of the church to send us pictures of themselves as they take part in online worship. You can, if you choose, accompany the picture with a short (one or two sentences) greeting, or a brief video of no more than ten seconds, so that we can share them as a part of Sunday morning worship. Please be aware that they may have to be edited for space reasons. You can send them as downloadable files to

Our response to the current health crisis
As a community of faith we continue to pray for the health and welfare of our church and community as we resist the temptation to fall prey to fear. We do, however, want to continue to look out for the welfare of our friends and neighbors. We are doing our best to stay current with best practices for this unique time — please stay tuned as these may change. Our primary place for timely communication will be our website, We will also offer reminders and notes on our Facebook page and by email. We are livestreaming our Sunday morning worship on Facebook Live so that you may continue to be a part of our worship. Do not, however, become isolated. If you need any help there are folks in our church who can do so. Call the office (773-784-7091) or email the office (

General fund giving:
September 6: $1,647

General fund giving:
September 13: $5,989

Scripture for Sunday,
September 27
Ezekiel 18:1-4, 25-32
Psalm 25:1-9
Philippians 2:1-13
Matthew 21:23-32

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)