New Header

Trinity Tidings

The E Newsletter of Trinity Episcopal Church, Sutter Creek

May 2017

In This Issue
Rector's Report
Vestry Briefs
Did you know?
RIP Joan Von der Heiden
Times of Change
Care Package Project
Altar Guild Change
Got an hour?
Trinity Historical Vignettes
Food Bank Donations
Trinity Singers Rehearsals
Birthdays this month
Would You Like to Contribute to the Newsletter
Rector's Report for May
Saying good-bye has always been difficult for me.  Sometimes I have dealt with loss and disappointment in healthy ways and other times I have just pulled myself up by the bootstraps and hoped for the best.  All of us have experienced unwanted goodbyes and difficult farewells during our tenure here on earth.  While moving through loss and grief is no picnic, Joyce Rupp (in her book Praying Our Goodbyes) suggests that we move through the sorrow by tending to our hurting self and inviting others to help us on the path of separation.  There is also a spiritual aspect of saying goodbye.  And that is to pray and to place our weariness and burdens on the heart of God.  This is where all healing begins.
It has been one month since I have announced my retirement as rector of Trinity Church beginning 8/1/17.   The good news is that we still have three months together in which to comfort and support one another.  I hope you will walk this journey of good-bye with me, asking me for any support, wisdom, or insight that will be of help during the remainder of our time together. 
Clergy transitions shake things up and place particular demands on the wardens and vestry. Clergy transitions also challenge the congregation and its leaders to reflect deeply and prayerfully on who they are, what they have been in the past, and where God is calling them today.  These transitions offer a wonderful opportunity for parishioners to once again make a commitment to offer their gifts in building up the body of Christ.  It is a time to focus on vision and mission and articulate why Trinity is important to each of us.

Your vestry has done good work so far.  On April 18th, they met with Bishop Beisner and Canon Andrea McMillin to get a better sense of the process ahead.  On April 27th, we gathered together for a vestry meeting to plan for the vestry retreat on May 19/20.  During this retreat, each vestry member will examine who s/he is today so that all are better equipped to discern what God is calling us to be in the future.  This is not an exercise in ego-preference but rather is a prayerful process; one that calls us to be honest, open, and hopeful.  
The monthly bible study group @ Trinity is finishing up its study on the Book of Acts.  "Acts" is a record of the early Christian Church.  It particularly focuses on the early leadership who tries to figure out how to move forward with "the good news of Jesus Christ" without him being present as their earthly leader.  Seeped in prayer and directed by the Holy Spirit, they put one foot in front of the other, sometimes being successful and other times making errors.  What is remarkable about these very human leaders is that they are passionate, hopeful, and mission minded. 
When I think about the church today in the 21st century, the culture is remarkably different from the culture in the Book of Acts.  However, people's need for God, meaning, community, and substance remain the same.  If I were to articulate the most important things for a faithful Christian community in the 21st century, it would not be about having a particular clergy person, expansive buildings and grounds, or lots of families attending.  Instead, the most important aspects of a vital community of faith today are:  A generous expression of love, a focus on hospitality, a sense of mission/purpose, and a deep connection to the Holy Spirit.  None of these aspects costs money, requires young families, or demands a particular ordained leader.  When the Holy Spirit directs our spiritual lives and we reach out to others with love and hospitality, all things become possible.
There is a time to every season under heaven (Eccl. 3):   "A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted; a time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; a time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance..."  Now is the time for us to pray our good-byes.  If we are faithful in prayer, partaking of  the graces that are offered to us in our daily lives and in the breaking of the bread each Sunday, we will find comfort, courage, and the willingness to move forward to that place where God is calling us to be.  Alleluia, Christ is risen!
May the peace of the Lord be always with you,
Pastor Karen Siegfriedt+

Photos of Activities at Trinity in April: 
Spring Workdays at Trinity

"Understanding Islam" lectures at Trinity

Holy Week Celebrations: Maundy Thursday
Vestry Briefs
By Margaret Lewis, Senior Warden
Your Vestry met on Thursday, April 27 for the regularly scheduled monthly meeting. 

  • Pastor Karen provided a teaching on different kinds of church models. 
  • Members discussed the leadership needs and styles of each model.
  • The Vestry retreat scheduled for May 19th and 20th was planned with the theme centering around personal reflection on each member's personal self-study as it relates to the church.
  • Monthly financials were reviewed and accepted as written.
  • Plans were made to ensure that each vestry member gets the required Safe-Church training as required by the Diocese.
Did you know?

May 5/6 at Sophia Well of Wisdom in Sutter Creek, there will be a webinar conference on "The Trinity."  Friday, May 5  6:00-9:00pm;  Saturday, May 6:  9:30am-5:30pm.  Bring a bag lunch.  All are welcome.

RIP- Joan Von der Heiden
A memorial service for Joan will be held at Trinity at 4:00pm on Thursday May 11th. Please direct donations in memory of  Joan Von der Heiden to UC Davis Comprehensive Cancer Center to benefit Acute Leukemia and MDS Research under the direction of Dr. Brian Jonas. Please make checks payable to UC Regents and send to: UC Davis Health System, Health Sciences Development, 4900 Broadway, Suite 1150, Sacramento, CA 95820
Times of Change
By Margaret Lewis, Senior Warden
Are you looking for things that you can do as Trinity experiences the "in-between" time of saying goodbye to Pastor Karen and Steph while also embracing the excitement and opportunities that are headed our way? A few things you might try:
Pray, pray and/or pray
  • Pastor Karen and Steph have shared that they are grieving too. Their excitement about starting a new stage of life is tempered by the loss of their current life. May they be lifted by our love for them and by God's promise of all that awaits in their new journey.
  • We need each other's prayers. It is hard when any member of our family is lost. Pastor Karen and Steph have become an integral part of this family. Our sadness is not unexpected. May we remember the ties that bind us and the shared faith that holds us.
  • Somewhere, near or far, our new Priest is moving around in the world. Perhaps even unaware of our existence! Let us pray for our new Priest. Whoever that person may be, we pray that he or she has the open-heart to be led by God's nudging and that he or she responds from a place of faith, moving us toward each other even before we are a glimmer in one another's eye. 
  • Pray for Trinity - We can't know what God has planned for this community, but we do know our church is too precious is his sight to be ignored. May our church continue to be a beacon of light and compassion in this community and the world and may we remain true to our mission.
  • Let us pray for Canon Andrea and Bishop Beisner, as they assist us in this time of process and patience as we begin to discern the direction our search will take us. May our leaders remain mindful of where God calls them and faithful to that call.
  • Finally, let us pray that we not be overwhelmed by the work that lies ahead, but rather embrace the beauty and learning that the process holds. May we too remain mindful of where God is calling us and faithful to our call as a community of believers.
Begin to answer the question for yourself: What/Who is Trinity?
We aren't ready to begin the formal "Self-Study" that will be a part of this process, but you can begin to ask your own self study questions by doing one or more of these things:
  • Check out Trinity's website. What do you think? Does the website say what you would like it to about what and who Trinity is?
  • Make a list of the things you think might be helpful to add or change.
  • Feel free to share your list with any vestry member - your voice matters!
  • If you aren't a computer user, make a list of the things you'd like a new person to know about Trinity
  • Remember, this is for your own use, when the time to do the actual study begins ALL parishioners will be invited to participate more formally.
Get involved / Stay involved
  • If you would like to step out in faith and offer a gift of time, talent or treasure this is the time.
  • There is a particular need for gifts of service to help the Sunday services continue to run smoothly as we transition
  • If you are interested in becoming an altar guild member - see Diane Christensen or Noreen Lafferty
  • If you are interested in becoming an acolyte or Liturgical Assistant - see Margaret Lewis
  • Do you have another thought about where you'd like to serve, but still have questions or feel unsure? Any vestry member would love to connect you with the resources you need.
As of April 28th the initial direction from the Diocese has not changed. For now we take their advice and stay the course; praying for one another, including Pastor Karen and Steph, allowing ourselves to process whatever emotions arise, and remembering our call to love and serve God and our neighbors. Your vestry exists to serve the church and her members. If you have any questions, concerns, or ideas please feel free to share with any vestry member.
Homeless Bags Thank You!
Thanks to your generosity and help, 100 bags were assembled on April 23 for our Care Packages for the Homeless Project!  Trinity may be small in numbers but we are great in heart and spirit!  Don't forget to take some of the bags with you to hand out.  They are available in the Narthex and in Jane's Hall.
Altar Guild Change in Leadership
After many years of excellent and caring service, Dorean Davis is stepping down from being the Ministry Leader for the Altar Guild.  Please thank her for her very special and caring attention to every detail that helps make our services at Trinity so special.  Diane Christensen and Noreen Lafferty have volunteered to take over this very important ministry.  Please consider becoming an Altar Guild member as we are losing several of our members and need new folks to join in our efforts to keep Sundays special.
Do you have an hour or 2 to give to Trinity once a month?
Due to departures and health issues, we are at a critically low level of volunteers for two of our very important ministries for Sunday services.  We need volunteers for the Altar Guild and for Chalice Bearers.  The Altar Guild is the behind the scenes group which makes sure your Sunday service is 'dressed, flowered, and prepared to be wonderful".  After training, you would be responsible for one Sunday a month.  Chalice Bearers are the folks who help during the service by serving communion wine, taking wine and bread to the choir upstairs at the 10:30 service, and often serving as the acolyte as well.  Again, it is only one Sunday a month!  Pastor Karen will be holding a training session for anyone interested in becoming a Chalice Bearer on May 21, 2017, between the services at 9:30 AM in the church.  Please consider helping in either or both of these ministries.  They truly brighten our Sundays and make Holy Communion possible!  Contact Pastor Karen for Chalice Bearers and either Diane Christensen or Noreen Lafferty for the Altar Guild.
Trinity Historical Vignettes, Part 4 (1910-1930)
Plans were made in September 1910 for a turkey supper/bazaar to be held Nov. 29.  Receipts reported in December were: donations of $5.00, the supper $42.50, the fancy table $47.05, the candy table $17.50.  The following spring, the Guild received a thank you note for the $2.75 sent for the "General Clergy Relief Fund".  Also this spring of 1911, the Guild began sending clothing for the children of the Home of the Merciful Saviour in Sacramento.  Fund raising activities for the year 1911 were an ice cream social in June, which made $37.75 and another bazaar and turkey supper in December. Members signed up to provide plum pudding, doughnuts, rolls, coffee, turkeys, cranberries, salad, potatoes, and "macroni".  This event made $103.70.
At the January 1912 meeting, Rev. and Mrs. Shea were invited to attend to "talk over some important church matters", which appears to be questioning the apportionment.  A letter was written to Dean Atwell, and this was replied to by Bishop Moreland.  The Guild president stated" the apportionment for 1912 of $31.10 might just as well be paid".  An ice cream social was planned once again.  "Boys' waists" was the reply to the question of what the children at Merciful Saviour needed.   Rev. Lake, the new pastor, made "some pleasing remarks" at the Guild meeting. A summer recess was decided upon.  Again, a December bazaar was planned; this time with a new booth: "a fish pond".  Rev. Lake moved that the secretary write to Mrs. Truan "asking her if she cared to sell the lot back of the church and what price she would want".  Nothing further on this topic was mentioned.

In March 1913, the ladies voted to move the deposit ($225.00) in the Bank of Amador County to the Ione Bank.  No explanation was given. In April 1914, Rev. Lake informed the Guild that he would be leaving.  No entry was made until May when it was noted that Mr. Rigby would now serve. Later that year, the ladies decided not to hold a bazaar as there was not enough help.
In 1916, plans were made for a bazaar.  The proceeds were gratifying as the day it was held was "very stormy". 

No minutes were recorded between 1917 and 1919.  In Feb 1919, it was noted that a service was held by Rev. Stewart of Lodi.  The previous minister, Mr. Verleger, had died.  Again, there was nothing recorded from 1919 -1922, when Jane Boitano was made secretary.  This is whom "Jane's Hall" is named after.  Even though the parish was obviously struggling, the Guild was determined to hold on.  In 1926,  the ladies discussed ways to repair the church.  Miss Herman said that she would work on some kind of entertainment, ladies offered to host card parties, and it was decided that each woman would bring an apron to work on at the next meeting to be donated at a future apron sale. Rev. Maxwell said that he would ask the Bishop to include any Trinity confirmands in his spring class.  In the spring of 1930, preparations were made for the Bishop's visit.  Surplices were made for the choir, and more hymnals were purchased for them.

NOTE:  Understanding that these notes made by the secretary were business in nature, I was hoping there might be some reference to hardships experienced during W.W. I and the flu epidemic.  Perhaps the absence of records during this period reflect these historic events.    Nancy Moore
Food Bank Donations
The Food Bank's cart, in the sanctuary, yielded 117 lbs. of food in April  Total giving in 2017: 515 lbs. of food.

Thank you for your generous support of this special ministry.
Trinity Singers Rehearsals
All are invited to join the Trinity Singers/Worship Team! Rehearsals are the 1st and 3rd Wednesdays at 7pm.  Bring your voices, your instruments, and a heart for worship and praise! For more information, please contact Carol Harper at 916-604-1872 or email . Web site:
May Birthdays

The following members of our church family are celebrating birthdays in May!


18th- Bob Zwieg

25th- Joshua Lewis



If you are celebrating a birthday in May, but you don't see your name listed here, please contact our Parish Administrative Asst.

Would You Like to Contribute to the Newsletter?
If you have an article of interest to the congregation that you would like included in the newsletter, please email it to the office, by the 20th of the month. It will be included in the next month's newsletter.