Rev. Stella Burkhalter brings a colorful background in the faith, having been grounded in rich tradition in Laredo, Texas in the Roman Catholic church, coming of age in a Pentecostal church during her youth, and nurtured in the United Methodist Church as an adult. All of this gives her an appreciation for the many ways God reaches us and for the many ways we reach back to God.
Stella graduated from the University of Texas’ School of Communication and received a Master of Divinity degree from Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary. She previously served three years at Oak Hill United Methodist Church as an associate pastor and Covenant UMC as Children’s Minister and Associate Pastor.
Director of Youth Ministries
Randy Knighten serves as youth minister at Covenant UMC. He has worked in youth and urban ministry in Louisiana and Tennessee since 2000. Before joining the staff of Covenant in April, 2014 he served as youth minister at Andrew Price Memorial UMC in Nashville, TN.
Randy and his wonderful wife, Maya, have two amazing sons. He has a heart for reaching out to people on the fringes, and he serves weekly at the Free Store and as a mentor at Anderson High. He is also pursuing a degree at Austin Seminary.
Emma Lake Boydston
Director of Children's Ministries
Emma Lake Boydston is from Tomball, Texas and graduated from Furman University in Greenville, South Carolina in 2008 with a Bachelor of Arts in Music. Her love of service and children has taken her to the mountains of Kenya for mission trips to a summer as an au pair in Spain. She loves to lead kids of all ages in singing with her ukulele and acting out imaginative skits with joy and creativity. Emma has served as the Director of Music for Magnolia United Methodist Church, Elementary Music Teacher for Salem Lutheran School in Tomball, and most recently taught at the Center for Music Therapy in Austin which serves children and adults with disabilities. She joined the Covenant community in October 2014, and also teaches music for the Covenant Preschool.
Matt Cardona comes on board as Covenant UMC’s worship leader bringing a passion for music, church, and community building. He also serves as the Director of the United Methodist FreeStore where he manages daily operations and leads a weekly Bible study and worship service. A graduate of Concordia University at Austin (BA in Music Ministry), he most recently served as Music Director at St. Mark UMC, leading both praise band and choir. He is encouraged in his endeavors by his wife Shawna, a high school teacher and coach, son Abel and daughter Emilia.
Richard Frazier has been involved in music almost all of his life. After graduating from Texas Tech University with a Master’s Degree in music Richard has been involved as a public school music teacher for thirty-one years. For the last seventeen years, Mr. Frazier has been on the faculty at Anderson High School where he teaches orchestra, guitar, and IB music as well as serving as Department Chair for Fine Arts. Richard is married to Ellen Frazier, a longtime elementary music teacher who currently teaches in Round Rock ISD. They have two beautiful children. Amy Frazier is a music teacher at Summit Elementary and an accomplished Harpist. Richard Alan Frazier is attending the University of North Texas, after having graduated from Anderson High School. “The wonderful music ministry at Covenant is open to anyone. We love singers and instrumentalists and have a place for all.”
Jan Glosser accepted the position of Preschool Director in the summer of 2016. Jan taught pre-Kindergarten at Covenant UMC Preschool for eight years before becoming Director. Her previous experience includes other preschool teaching, as well as teaching kindergarten and first grade. She holds her bachelor’s degree in Elementary/Kindergarten Education and her master’s degree in Children’s Literature. At home, she and her husband, Jeff are parents of three children – Jenny who is 20, Cole who is 16, and Delaney who is 13. Both of her daughters graduated from our preschool program.
Steve Wottrich is our faithful pianist and organist. We are blessed to have someone of his caliber who is able to play so many styles with such grace. You might see him on the streets of Austin in his day job as a postman.