Trinity Tidings for February 14, 2019

Trinity Tidings for February 14, 2019

Sunday, February 17
6th Sunday after Epiphany (year C)

Holy Communion at 8:15 and 10:45 
Sunday School and Adult Forum at 9:30

Living God, in Christ you make all things new. Transform the poverty of our nature by the riches of your grace, and in the renewal of our lives make known your glory, through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord.

Jeremiah 17:5-10
Psalm 1
1 Corinthians 15:12-20
Luke 6:17-26

Assisting in the Sunday Services

Acolytes – Matthew B (8:15); Anders S (10:45)
Assisting Ministers – Nancy N (8:15); Miriam M (10:45)
Children’s Chapel – Anita S (8:15); Anita S (10:45)
Greeters – Nancy J (8:15); TBD (10:45)
Lectors – Jerry B (8:15); Len S (10:45)
Ushers – Steve & Donna S (8:15); Patricia S, Robert P (10:45)
Coffee Hour – Noralyn & Phil D (8:15); Spr family (10:45)
Altar Custodians – Carol B (8:15); Christine B (10:45)
Bulletin Assembly – Diana M
Tellers – Greg & Margaret F

From the Pastor …

Dear People of God,

The Epiphany season calls us to see how Christ shines forth in our lives and in our world. I have found our worship this season to be especially enlightening and encouraging. I hope you have as well.

In keeping with this spirit of Epiphany, I strive to keep the transition/interim work we do together as transparent as possible. It’s constant, fluid work, so let me bring you up to date.

I have asked that we might explore some of the 10 settings for the liturgy in the ELW. The best way to experience a new setting is to try it for a season. And we have been doing that this Epiphany season. In Lent we will move on/move back to another. I don’t do this to afflict you! But there is a very high likelihood that your next pastor will reflect the diversity of Lutheran worship and I want at least to expose you to some of the riches that are out there.

I understand from the council members that some in the congregation are anxious for the call committee to be formed. Here the history of Trinity is informative. A look back at the history of the congregation will reveal that after every regularly called pastor left, the congregation engaged the leadership of an intentional interim pastor. In fact, it looks like Trinity has been served by more interim pastors that regularly called pastors! My point is, Trinity has been here before and this interim time will not last forever. But it’s not time to start the call process yet. Here is where I talk about the “other” side of transition work. We are all familiar with the congregation side – making sure the congregation’s needs are heard and identified. But there’s also the pastoral side – that is, becoming the kind of congregation that will be attractive to pastoral candidates, the kind of place someone might consider uprooting their family and moving across the country to serve. While the two overlap, they are not identical. We go about our transition work with both the congregation and the new pastor in mind.

Finally, there are a series of tasks that need to be completed and issues adequately addressed before it makes sense to form a call committee. Here’s a sample of things we’re working on:

  • a renewed sense of vision. A congregation-wide event is being planned to that everyone who wants to can have a voice in shaping the mission of the congregation.
  • Attendance – worship and other events. For several years Trinity’s worship attendance has averaged around 100-110. That’s good! But it’s hard to stay on a plateau for an extended period of time. The hope is to see growth across the board in participation.
  • Diversity awareness. This may surprise some, given Trinity’s reputation, but I have learned that not everyone is experiencing the same level of acceptance and awareness. And that is a problem because it can’t be fixed with a program. We are going to have to talk openly about what this means and see just how inclusive Trinity would like to be going forward.
  • Closely related, but yet distinct, is the matter of racism. How can Trinity become a genuinely affirming community for all people?
  • Financial matters. Trinity is in a good financial position! But analysis by the Finance team reveals commitments (pledges) for 2019 are lower than 2018 and there are some opportunities coming up that will require more, not less, revenue. We don’t want to try and call a new pastor until we can demonstrate that we are on sound financial footing.
  • Last of all, grief. Pastor Berner was here a long time. People are still grieving his departure, with good reason! It will take time for that grief to feel less acute. Until it does, it makes thinking in a clear-eyed way about the future difficult.

What other questions do you have? Talk to me or a council member and I will do my very best to address your concern!


Weekly Devotional

The Good Life

What does a good life look like, and how does one achieve it? That question has been asked by everyone from average people to the greatest philosophers for as long as humans have been around. Adults share their answers with children through moral tales. Advertisers promise it to consumers through carefully calculated stories and pictures. In both cases, the “blessings” of the right choice are contrasted with the “woes” of the wrong.

In today’s gospel, Jesus speaks his own series of blessings and woes that paint a counterintuitive picture of the good life. He stands among a crowd of people who have come to him to be healed of diseases and unclean spirits. People of Jesus’ time blamed ailments on individuals’ own poor choices and sins. But as Jesus looks around at the crowd, he calls them blessed: the poor, the hungry, the weeping, the hated, the reviled, and the defamed. They are blessed because their poverty, hunger, grief, and pain have brought them to Christ, through whom God’s power goes out to heal all people.

It can be easy to paint a version of the good life, or even the “good church,” based on worldly visions of prosperity, success, and righteousness. But the goodness of the church comes from the one who stands at its center: Jesus Christ. As we come together to worship, our Lord draws around himself a crowd with ailments, wounds, and worries, many of which the world has taught us to cover up and hide. But together we listen to Christ’s words of grace and receive his body and blood at the table. What does the good life look like? Broken people being healed together in the presence of Christ.

Reprinted from Words for Worship, copyright 2018 Augsburg Fortress. Used by permission of Augsburg Fortress.

The Kingdom of God and the Church

Join Pastor Kern on Sunday mornings in February at 9:30 in Room 11 for The Kingdom of God and the Church: what’s the difference?  We’ll take a lighthearted look at such topics as, + how, exactly did the church come to be? + how does Trinity’s history reflect the church’s history? + Where does authority lie in the church? + How do congregations make decisions?  The goal is that through this process we will have a renewed appreciation for our congregation and the church in the world. 
All are welcome!

Annual Cook-Off – Next Sunday

A Trinity tradition continues. Join us next Sunday, February 24, after the late service for a Meatball & Bar Cookie Cook-Off.  Get out those recipes and bring your favorite meatball and/or bar cookie.  Even if you do not enter, please hang around to taste and vote.  It is always a great fellowship event.  The funds raised support Trinity’s youth mission trip (75%) and Manna Food Bank (25%).  Who will be this year’s winners?  Sign up in the Social Hall to enter the Cook-Off.  Please help us make this a delicious success.

February Food Drive
Only 2 Weeks Left!

During February, we are collecting specific foods to support the efforts of Bethesda Help, a local all-volunteer non-profit organization providing emergency assistance to needy persons in southern Montgomery County, including food, limited financial assistance (for rent, utility, prescriptions), and referrals to shelters, clothing, or appropriate professional agency.

Emergency food deliveries to households in crisis provide a three-day supply of food for each member of the household.   Each delivery includes:

1 – Can of Meat (chicken) 12.5 oz
2 – Cans of Tuna 5 oz (usually packed in water)
3 – Cans of vegetables (preferably low/no salt)
2 – Can of beans 15.5 oz
(garbanzo, black, red kidney, navy, cannellini, pinto, baked)
1 – Can of fruit (preferably any packed in juice)
1 – Box of Oatmeal (cannister or box of individual packs)/ cereal
1 – Jar Peanut Butter 18 oz
1 – Box of Pasta 16 oz (spaghetti or various pasta)
1 – Can of Pasta/ Spaghetti Sauce 24 oz
1 – Bag of Rice (white or brown) 16 oz
2 – Boxes of macaroni and cheese 7.25 oz

In early March, we will sponsor a service project for Tilden Middle School students to organize the bags.  The students will also learn about Bethesda Help and the urgent needs so close to home.  Our goal is to prepare deliveries for 75 families.  Questions, please contact Margaret F.

In Transition …

As part of the transition process, Pastor Kern is having one-on-one conversation with Council members and members of the congregation.  If you would like an appointment to talk with Pastor Kern, please use the sign-up sheet on the podium in the social hall or contact the church office.  This is your opportunity to share what you think and feel about your congregation – what you love, what concerns you, your hopes, etc.

Helping Break the Cycle of Poverty

Thanks to all who dropped off donations for A Wider Circle. On Sunday, January 27, several of us volunteered at the warehouse and delivered a pick up truck full of professional clothes, sheets, blankets, dishes and other household goods. We will make another trip in April, stay tuned for a date and time!

Quarterly Giving Statements and Pledge Envelopes are available in the Social Hall.  If you have not done so already, please pick up yours today.

Remember in Your Prayers

. . . the church
our synod & bishops

Bishops Elizabeth Eaton & Richard Graham
our missionaries
Stephen Deal & Marta Giron, Cent. America
 our congregation
Trinity Church
. . . the nations
Afghanistan, El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Indonesia, Korea, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Liberia, Libya, Mexico, Myanmar, Namibia, Palestine, Somalia, Spain/Cataluña, Sudan, Syria, Ukraine, United States, Venezuela, Yemen, Zimbabwe
. . . the sick and suffering
nursing/rehabilitation center
Philip T, Manor Care Potomac
John W, Sunrise of Rockville
Diana B
Jean B
Tigist G
Susan K
Pr Robert M
James T
Chris T
Margo W
family and friends*
Carol B, friend of Marilyn C
Wendy C, friend of Len S
Wayne C family, friends of Erna B
Frank M, friend of Diana M
Jean R, mother of Sabrina R
Dee Dee W, niece of Marilyn G
Vern W, brother-in-law of Sabrina R
Charlene Z, niece of Marilyn G

*For family and friends, prayer requests will be kept on the list for four weeks. After four weeks, please complete another card.

18. Peggy J, Richard R
19. Hagen S, Nicholas S
20. Cathy C
21. Rebecca L
22. Greg F, Mina

22. Sarah G & Nathan L

This Week at Trinity

Sun, Feb 17 (Epiphany 6)
8:15 a.m. Holy Communion
9:30 a.m. Sunday School/Adult Forum
10:45 a.m. Holy Communion
12:15 p.m. MEF Team
12:15 p.m. Trinity Singers rehearsal (MR)
1:45 p.m. Bethesda H&R (Children & Youth)
Mon, Feb 18
7:30 p.m. Heavenly Handbells (Wor)
Tues, Feb 19
11:15 a.m. Church Staff (11)
7:00 p.m. Stephen Ministry Training (11)
7:30 p.m. Cong Council special meeting (10)
Sat, Feb 23
Trinitarian Newsletter Deadline
Sun, Feb 24 (Epiphany 7)
8:15 a.m. Holy Communion
9:30 a.m. Sunday School/Adult Forum
10:45 a.m. Holy Communion
12:15 p.m. Cook Off
12:15 p.m. Trinity Singers rehearsal (MR)
1:45 p.m. Parish Life Team (SH)