A New Parish Year

Change always brings challenges and opportunities. The ways that we experience change depend on how we balance the needs that prompt change and the emotions that result from change. There have been some big changes at Holy Trinity this year, and my observation is that the Wardens, your Vestry, the Search Committee, and other leaders in the parish have managed those changes in such a way that has maintained relative stability. I am very thankful for them and their work.

As I’ve spent this summer meeting you all and getting to know you, listening to your questions and concerns, I’ve been thinking about the various needs of the parish and how we can work together to meet those needs. With the retirement of Holy Trinity’s Christian Formation Director this summer, we have the opportunity to reassess the structures of our ministry to form and equip faithful followers of Jesus Christ.

Our Christian Formation for children and youth on Sunday mornings is one of those areas of stability. There are some new Sunday School teachers in a couple of classes, which is a sign of growth and health, but the overall program is much as it has been for the last few years. I observed all of these classes in action the first week of the year and found each group engaged in lively learning!

I saw children excited to be back with beloved teachers from last year, and children getting to know new teachers. I saw children hearing the age-old story of God’s love for all God’s children. I saw children beginning to learn rituals of gathering and praying. I saw young people working together to arrange their space, and I saw young people talking about different ways to be a more active part of Holy Trinity. My heart was warmed and encouraged by all of these sights.

We have entered into a collaborative arrangement with University Lutheran Church to engage a talented young woman, Ellen Girardeau, to provide leadership for a combined youth group this year. Look for Ellen’s picture and story in another part of Tempo. She is a delightful person and a dedicated, well-equipped mentor and leader for our young people. I am excited to see how this collaboration will contribute to the growth of the youth—in numbers and in Christian discipleship.

In the very near future, I would like to call together the parents of our young families to listen to your needs and the ideas and dreams that you have for meeting those needs. I would like to find creative ways to involve families in the life and ministry of Holy Trinity, and I need your help to make that happen. Please join me in the EfM room on Sunday, September 11 at 9:30 for this important discussion!

As we are working our way toward making the Vision 2020 a reality for Holy Trinity, I want you to know that I will continue to listen to you and to the Holy Spirit. Together, we can make it so: In 2020, Holy Trinity is a parish growing: a diverse, dynamic church worshiping within the Episcopal tradition; a church forming and re-forming: a loving family nurturing faith across generations; a family sustaining: a communion bound in one another by the sacred intimacy of sharing joys and sorrows; and a communion giving: a parish joined to our community and our world in charity, and in hope.

Grace & peace to you all,