Covenant Community Church is a local, temporal and visible expression of the universal, eternal and invisible Christian Church. Covenant Community Church had its genesis in the Pentecostal Revival that swept the nation including St. Louis in the early years of the twentieth century. Walter Sampson Guinn was converted and later ordained in the ministry in 1927 by the Reverend Benjamin Pemberton, affectionately known as "Brother Ben".
Brother Walter Guinn established a mission on North Broadway and eventually rented an old church at 25th and Sullivan Avenue in North St. Louis. In 1935, Brother Guinn pitched the first tent revival at 14th and Branch Street. For ten consecutive years he had a tent meeting at this location. During one of these summer meetings the church he rented on Sullivan Avenue was sold. Not knowing where to take his flock when the time came to take down the tent, Robert Doughtry came by and said he wanted to sell the contents of a church building at Blair and Warren Street. There were no services being held in the church at that time. Thanking God for opening a door, Brother Guinn and the congregation rented and moved into what was later named the White Way Tabernacle, just one block from North 14th street, White Way Shopping Center. Soon the building was bought and paid for by this growing congregation.
In 1959, the congregation bought a beautiful church at Grand and Carter Avenue. The name became the Northside Pentecostal Church. Brother Eddie Guinn, Walter Guinn's eldest son who was pastoring a daughter church in Troy, Missouri came in to the city to help pastor the church in 1967.
After eleven years at Grand and Carter, four acres were purchased in Bellefontaine Neighbors and Brother Eddie Guinn spearheaded the effort to build a beautiful sanctuary that was dedicated in December of 1970.
During the Christmas holidays of 1977, Pastor Allan M. Ellis and his wife Christi moved to St. Louis after having pastored in Connecticut. Christi was Brother Eddie's eldest daughter. She met Allan Ellis at a Bible school in St. Paul, Minnesota, and they were married in August of 1974. Although Allan and Christi had planned to move into other opportunities in ministry after ministering in Connecticut, the Lord seemed to require their gifts and talents in the church in St. Louis. Pastor Allan learned how to preach and pastor in his years of assisting Brother Eddie at Northside.
Eventually, because of Brother Eddie's love for people and family, the name of the church was changed to the Northside Family Worship Center. This signaled a new desire upon the part of the leadership and the congregation to develop more fully an outward face to the unchurched.
Brother Walter Guinn passed away on the last day of 1979. Brother Eddie Guinn passed away on July 26, 2003. Pastor Allan assumed the full duties of Senior Pastor at this time, even though the mantle had been passed several years before. As a result, our church has been blessed with stable leadership having only three pastors in continual, unbroken leadership in its nearly eighty year history.
Under Pastor Allan's leadership, the church changed its name to Covenant Community Church which more fully reflected our unique biblical and theological emphases. Covenant Community Church is still committed to a high view of Holy Scripture and a high view of Jesus Christ. Our theology is strongly influenced by the Reformation. Our worship atmosphere seeks to be warm and intergenerational ranging from the latest praise and worship music to the grand, old hymns of the Church. Above all, we believe that it is our highest privilege to glorify God in all that we are and all that we do. This and this alone, allows us to enjoy God not only now but for ever and ever!
Pastor Allan M. Ellis
September 21, 2008
The Nineteenth Sunday after Pentecost