BCC Blog

September 15, 2021

Pastor Ryan Eikenbary-Barber

Lead Pastor

First Covenant Church in Seattle and Bellingham Covenant Church partnered to start a Swedish-speaking church in Mount Vernon in 1921. There were 16 charter members of the Swedish Tabernacle of Mount Vernon. Weekly worship services began in 1924. English worship services began in 1925. The name of our congregation changed to Bethany Mission Church in 1928.

Come into the North entrance and you will see four poster-sized photos of the old church building, the bus, the choir, and the cradle roll. Take a look at the baby playing with a soap bubble and a teddy bear. That’s my father Phil Barber, who spent his first five years at Bethany Covenant Church.

Take a stroll down the south hallway and you will see one hundred years of history in the confirmation photos. Maybe someone from your family is in one of the pictures. All three of my kids are in those confirmation photos. The grandchildren of that baby with the bear and the bubble eventually found their way into the history of Bethany Covenant Church.

I hope you have enjoyed the video history reports that we have had in worship for the past several weeks. Even if you don’t have relatives in the black and white church photos, there is something to be gained by looking backward in order to move forward. When we know who we are, we can move forward in trust and hope. The centennial celebration of Bethany Covenant Church is much more than a sentimental journey. We are honoring the past and embracing the future.

I would like to encourage everyone to participate in the centennial celebration. On Saturday, October 23 we will put on an old radio show style program. Rev. Don Robinson will speak. There will be skits, musical performances, and maybe even a few jokes. Bethany Covenant Church started a weekly radio show on KBRC back in 1947. These days, we make online videos, but the mission remains the same: to spread the Word of God beyond the walls of our church building.

On Sunday, October 24, Bethany Covenant Church will invite Superintendent Greg Yee to preach. Together we will give thanks for the first hundred years of sharing the Good News in the Skagit Valley and beyond. Together we will pray that God will bless the next hundred years with many more opportunities to share the grace and mercy that we have found in Jesus Christ. Come celebrate the faithfulness of God for the past century! Come pray for the fruitfulness of God for the next hundred years.