The History of Covenant
Covenant Church was formed in 1965 out of a desire in the Auburn community for a Presbyterian Church faithful to the Word of God and committed to the historic understanding of the Reformed faith.
Meetings were first held in homes of interested families and later in the Woman’s Club on Sanders Street. On March 14, 1965, the interested families rented the Auburn Woman’s club for the first worship service which was held without a preacher. Later that year on May 2, 1965, twenty-four people signed the church charter and the young church moved to the Auburn University campus.
On June 15, 1965, Bryant Black, a recent graduate of Covenant Theological Seminary, of St. louis, was named supply pastor. The church continued meeting at the Woman’s Club where only a pianist and song leader had song books. When the Woman’s Club house became unavailable, the church began searching for other facilities for Sunday morning services. They were welcomed to Auburn University campus in 1966.
Ever since the church was organized, members dreamed of the day when they would have a permanent home. Slowly this began to come true. Members worked on Saturdays, holidays, and nearly every night of the week providing most of the labor to construct the first building. On March 12, 1967 it was announced that the roof was on and work would continue no matter the weather. The church moved to its first permanent facility on Shelton Mill Road on July 9, 1967. Pews consisted of 100 metal chairs and pulpit featured a handmade lectern. Roughed in, and waiting for future development, were eight classrooms, a library, kitchen, and church office. Church development continued as the building continued being build one room at a time. Early in 1973 it was announced that Presbytery would be meeting at Covenant for the first time. A flurry of activities followed resulting in all but one room being finished before the meeting.
When the building was destroyed by fire on December 29, 1975, the small congregation bravely continued to build the church and began plans on a new building. CLICK HERE TO READ AN ARTICLE FROM THE OA NEWS ABOUT THE FIRE.
Plans were to ask Auburn University students to help cleaned the burned area and then start construction on the exact slab that the first building had been built on. Work on the second church building got under way June 24, 1974. Using professional labor this time, the building progressed rapidly. Plans called fro the sanctuary to have a cathedral decking, and a ten foot window behind the pulpit. It would seat 250 people on the first floor and 80 in the balcony.
In 1977, Covenant extended its ministry to evangelical students at Auburn University through the pastoral ministry of Dr. Peter Doyle. This enlarged and enthusiastic ministry began to draw young families to Covenant.
In 1986, the church called Pastor Gary Spooner to lead the growing emphasis of ministry to families and students. Membership at Covenant has grown form the original 24 to 250. The congregation also welcomes many Auburn students who make Covenant their home church while attending college.
Covenant Church functions in ministry according to Ephesians 4:16: “the proper working of each individual part, causes the growth of the body for the building up of itself in love.” Training members for personal ministry and shared ministries in the body of Christ.
Our history confirms God’s purpose that the faith of the Bible prospers in this strategic university community through Covenant Presbyterian Church.