Covenant 5

 Living the promise of peace, justice and dignity in the Episcopal Diocese of Michigan and beyond... 

Statement: Re-affirm our Fifth Baptismal Pledge

As we progress through an unprecedented 2018, Covenant 5, the social justice and peace advocacy committee of the diocese, urges each Episcopalian to re-affirm her or his commitment to our fifth baptismal pledge of "striving for justice and peace among all people, and respect the dignity of every human being."

By re-affirming our commitment, each of us is making a positive and constructive statement during these tumultuous times.  According to the Book of Common Prayer (p. 312), renewing our baptismal vows in church is appropriate at the Easter Vigil (March 31), the Day of Pentecost (May 20), All Saints Day (November 1) or the Sunday after All Saints Day (November 4), and on the Feast of the Baptism of our Lord (the First Sunday after the Epiphany), which is in early January, 2019).  If on these four days there are no candidates for Baptism, the Renewal of Baptismal Vows, p. 292, may take the place of the Nicene Creed.

Renewal is especially fitting during these difficult times when we are challenged with so many peace and justice issues, such as:

  • The increasing empowerment of women, especially in politics, and, the #MeToo/Time's Up sexual harassment and abuse movement
  • The continuing probe of Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election, often derided by some as a "witch hunt" or "hoax"
  • The unprecedented congressional investigations into the F.B.I., the Justice and State Departments and all other related activities, including the release of specific "memos" 
  • The decades-long epidemic of all forms of bullying, including workplace bullying and harassment, and the significantly increasing rate of suicides among all groups of people
  • Long-standing immigration and deportation policies
  • Long-neglected criminal justice issues, necessary prison reforms and review of police policies, procedures and accountability standards
  • On-going "fake news" attacks on the press's freedom of investigative powers
  • Gun violence problems, including school shootings, and our leaders' inaction to promote public safety
  • The opioid addiction crisis, cited as society's top public health problem
  • increasing disparity and inequality of wages by income class, sex, race, etc., that was only deepened by tax "reform" legislation
  • Essential environment safeguards, including 'climate change' protections
  • Free and fair elections with no gerrymandering, preconditions or requirements 

There are other concerns and more will arise, but during these trying and difficult times, NOW is the time for each of us to renew his/her baptismal pledge "with God's help."

The Rev. Charles (Chuck) Swinehart

Co-chair, Disability Awareness Committee

Co-chair, Alliance to Abolish Bullying

EPPN and Immigration Policy: Defend Temporary Protected Status

The Episcopal Public Policy Network is asking Episcopalians to take action to keep Temporary Protected Status (TPS) protections intact. Click HERE for more information, including an interfaith toolkit for use by congregations and individuals. 

EPPN is also asking Episcopalians to write to lawmakers to urge them to co-sponsor the Dream Act. 

From our friends at the Michigan League for Public Policy -- click HERE for resources regarding immigration policies and the impact in Michigan. 

Diocesan Convention Resolutions

Resolutions to the 2017 Diocesan Convention (in final form with amendments) can be downloaded by clicking on the button below. 

Resources for Resolutions

Resources for learning more about the subjects of the Diocesan Convention resolutions can be found on the Resources page.

About Covenant 5

Who are we?

Welcome to, the Web site of Covenant 5, a community of ministries in the Episcopal Diocese of Michigan educating and advocating for social justice. If you are concerned about peace, justice and dignity issues and want to do something positive about them, you are in the right place.

The origin of Covenant 5 of the Episcopal Diocese of Michigan dates back to a meeting in 2002 in which Bishop Gibbs gathered those who were members of existing diocesan social justice ministries and others who had an interest in working for social justice. Bishop Gibbs envisioned a coalition of ministries who related to the fifth Baptismal promise -- "Will you strive for justice and peace among all people, and respect the dignity of every human being?"

Covenant 5 ministries have long had an emphasis on advocacy as a way to fulfill the gospel imperative of seeking justice, peace and equality. The definition of advocacy ministry as we understand it focuses on striving to formulate and implement public policy, and supporting grass-roots efforts for social change and other justice concerns. Examples include organizing or joining legislative advocacy efforts in conjunction with the Episcopal Public Policy Network, sponsoring educational events, and letter-writing campaigns. 

Diocesan ministry members of Covenant 5 include Disability Awareness, Economic Justice Commission, Episcopal Peace Fellowship, Prison Ministry, and TBLG Concerns. 

Every year, Covenant 5 awards Peace and Justice Advocacy Grants to local and national agencies and organizations. A list of the most recent grantees can be found HERE.

To contact Covenant 5, send email to, or click on the button below.

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