May 2016 Trinity Tribune

In This Issue:
Spirit on the Street
The Rev. Paul Nancarrow
In the middle of this month - Sunday, May 15, to be exact - we will celebrate the Feast of Pentecost, when the Holy Spirit came upon the apostles and filled them with the power to speak in other languages and proclaim the Good News about Jesus to everyone in Jerusalem.
 
According to the story (told in the second chapter of the Book of Acts), the Spirit impelled Peter and the others out of the house where they were sitting, out into the street, out where large crowds had gathered to observe the Jewish pilgrim festival of the Feast of Weeks. According to Jewish custom of the time, every male Jew was supposed to make a pilgrimage to the Temple in Jerusalem at least once in his life; and the three times in the year such pilgrimages were most appropriate were the pilgrim festivals of Passover, Weeks, and Tabernacles. So at the time of the Feast of Weeks, the streets of Jerusalem would have been full of people making their pilgrimage to the Temple from all the corners of the Roman Empire where they lived in the diaspora.
 
I saw a film depiction of the Pentecost event years ago, and in that scene Peter and the other apostles were not just sitting idly in the house when the Spirit came. It was a religious festival, after all, and the film showed the group at prayer, singing together the Hallel (Praise) psalms that were customarily used on joyous occasions. (The Hallel psalms are 113-118; look them up!) It was during the psalm-singing that the Spirit came, and when Peter and the others burst out into the street they weren't just shouting gibberish: they were taking their prayer to the streets and proclaiming their traditional praise to God in a new way for Jesus.
 
Now textual rigor compels me to say the the Acts text does not actually say the apostles were singing liturgy when the Spirit came. But I like the image anyway, and the text certainly suggests the possibility. So let's go with it for the moment.
 
And when we go with it, the first thing it does in my mind is make me ask how often we today take our liturgy to the streets. How often does the Spirit impel us to get out of our house and proclaim Jesus where lots of people can hear? How often do we get so enthusiastic with our public praise that the bystanders think we must be drunk? (No, really, it's in the story: see Acts 2:13 for one crowd reaction to the sound of the apostles singing and praising and naming Jesus in many languages!) When do we show the Spirit on the street?
 
Actually, I have several answers to that question. We take our liturgy to the streets on Palm Sunday, when we have our annual Palm Parade from Trinity to St Francis to Emmanuel and back to Trinity again. We take our liturgy to the streets on Good Friday, when we walk the Way of the Cross from the Woodrow Wilson birthplace, past courthouses and banks and businesses, and finally into the church for the Good Friday liturgy.
 
More recently, we've begun to take our liturgy to the streets on Ash Wednesday, with a project we've been calling "Dust to Dust." A lot of churches are doing this in a lot of places, and they usually call it something like "Ashes 2 Go" - which is a nice contemporary catchy phrase, I admit, but seems to me to emphasize too much the speed of the encounter, when the ceremony of ashes is really about slowing down and paying attention to repentance and forgiveness. (But that's probably just my quirky understanding...)
 
One thing I noticed the last time I did Dust to Dust was how many people came up and asked for ashes and a prayer for healing. This surprised me at first, because I know the church's symbolism very well, and I know that the ashes are a mark of mortality. Ashes are not about healing, they are about our tragic recognition of just how far from healing we are.
 
But the people who came up to me did not already "know" that, and so they spoke out of the real need of their heart when they asked for healing prayer. I think some of them wanted to be touched - the placing of a hand on a head is a gesture of acceptance and goodwill that is widely recognized among many religions and many secular customs as well - and I think many people who came to me really wanted the touch more than they wanted the ash. It was for me a surprising twist on the meaning of Ash Wednesday; but that was the prayer that was asked, and that was the prayer that we prayed.
 
And that makes me think: Ash Wednesday, Palm Sunday, Good Friday - the occasions we take our liturgy to the streets are almost exclusively penitential occasions. Oh, to be sure, on Palm Sunday we wave the branches and sing upbeat songs as we parade through the streets; but we all know that the reading of the Passion and the beginning of the week of Crucifixion is what's coming next. Most of the time, we go out to witness to penitence.
 
But the apostles were impelled out to witness to praise. They were intoxicated with Hallelujahs. People on the street ask for healing prayer. Maybe there's a message for us here.
 
What might be some ways that we at Trinity could take our joy and praise and song to the streets? We do Mass on the Grass in the churchyard in the summers; that's near the street, but still within our big imposing iron fence; perhaps there's another spot we might make the Holy Meal available? We do Christmas caroling at nursing homes and residences in December; what do you suppose would happen if some singers gathered and just burst into joyful hymns on a street corner some non-Christmas time? People ask for healing prayer on Ash Wednesday; what if we offered anointing and prayer for healing on the sidewalk on some sunny Sunday afternoon? We are a creative bunch at Trinity: how can you picture us as a parish taking the Spirit to the street in Staunton? How might we proclaim our traditional praise to God in a new way for Jesus?
 
On Sunday, May 15 we will celebrate the Feast of Pentecost. But let us pray that the gift of the Holy Spirit will send us out to pray and praise and sing and serve on many more days than that! 


Over the Hills
Ted Jordan
The tree had to go. That part was abundantly clear. Beside the fact that it was dead or dying and a real eyesore, it was written into and agreed upon in the scope of work that it would be removed. And now the rest of the job was almost done. When it had begun the weather was wintry and there were many pressing issues indoors but they were taken care of and it was rapidly trending Spring. It was time. Nothing to it but to do it.

It was not a huge tree although it seemed considerably larger than I remembered when I looked at the job some months ago. It was tall enough to fall on the house if not felled properly .The obvious solution to that problem was to take down the top third or so of it first using a rope to keep it from falling in unintended directions. That involved a ladder to about fifteen or so feet and then reaching up a few feet more to lop off the top. My helper Scott would keep pressure on a rope and I would scramble up the ladder with the chainsaw to do the cutting. We set everything up and as I began to go up I realized that the ladder was a little more shaky than ideal. I also noticed that the saw seemed considerably heavier than I remembered and it was going to be hard to get it extended up and in front of me to do the cutting.  Worse was the fact that every outcome I envisioned was a bad one resulting in unintended and undesirable results. I was up there and ready with the saw roaring but couldn't bring myself to start the cut.

I turned the saw off and came down the ladder. Scott looked confused. This was not how we rolled. We saw the job, planned how to do it and then just did it. That's how we worked. But now I was ranting about getting someone else to do it instead.  Why back in the day I would have cut it quickly and cleanly without a second thought and he knew that. But now I hesitated.

I am no longer a young man. That part is abundantly clear. I am enrolled in Medicare and am eligible for my full Social Security benefits whenever I choose to begin receiving them.  Almost no part of my physical being works as good as it used to. And my mental capacities certainly have not made up for the difference because the fact is they are also declining. Maybe not as quickly but certainly declining. So not being as strong or as agile as a younger version of me makes some things more difficult and some darn near impossible. Many things. That is a hard pill to swallow and can be discouraging and downright depressing at times.

The term I often hear used to describe this set of circumstances is "over the hill". It indicates that someone is past his or her prime and generally in decline. However being a bicyclist I think of something different when I think about "over the hill". In cycling when you get over the hill it means that the hard work is done at least for now and you can look forward to an easier time of it as you are coming down. It is a time to recover and gather your strength again and get ready for the rest of the journey which will likely have more hills to climb and descend.

Being older and less able doesn't mean you are dead. Yet. But if you focus only on the loss then I think that you decline even faster. Worrying solely on all that you can no longer do only makes you feel less powerful that you already are. For me the trick is to recognize and take preventative action. I can't merely accept that I can no longer do a certain thing. Maybe there are different ways to do it that require something besides the brute force of a younger person. Sure it might have been easier before but that doesn't mean it is impossible now. The key is to not be intimidated by what you have lost and to actively seek a solution that fits into whatever your skill set is now. It requires a type of agility that is less physical and more reality based.

When we just accept something as no longer possible we diminish ourselves in a greater way than aging does. Certainly there are things we can no longer do exactly as we did them before but that doesn't mean we can't discover new approaches. Maybe the results can be the same and maybe they too will be somewhat lessened, but it they don't have to be nonexistent. Doing an end around to avoid limitations may be harder but the success that comes with it is even sweeter than before and certainly not taken for granted.

So as I go over the hill instead of not being able to do things I once could, I now look for different and physically less demanding ways to get the job done. It usually takes longer than the previous brute force approach but in many ways the solutions become more elegant and at least as equally pleasing as they were before. They may still seem physically challenging but at least they are not impossible. As they say the idea is to work smarter and not harder.

A footnote to this process is that sometimes you just have to get more help than you used to. That might be the most important thing that you ever learn about aging and deteriorating physical skills. In the "working smarter" arena that might just be the smartest thing you learn to do. It doesn't mean that you need to rely on someone else to do everything for you but rather they lend that little bit extra that you seem to be lacking.

This is all well and good but I wonder if I am not too stubborn to listen to my own good advice. I am probably just as likely to keep banging my head against a wall in an attempt to do it myself. Too many years of self-reliance. But I surely am capable of entertaining easier approaches. Take that tree for instance. It was just a matter of tying the top off a little higher and then cutting from a firmer foundation standing on the ground. It was thicker and a hard cut but infinitely safer and less strenuous. When that tree came down there was a real sense of exhilaration that came from not giving up when it seemed too hard. It just took a different approach and there we went over the hill.


Notes from the Senior Warden
Lee Beam, Senior Warden
Have you ever noticed how time flies?  In both my personal and business life, days turn to weeks, turn to months, and then another year has gone by.  And sometimes I look back and say, "wow, what did I get done in that time?"

It's near the end of April and one-third of the calendar year is behind us....I had so many things I planned to do in my year as Senior Warden, and, well, they haven't happened yet!

One of my goals for this year is to strengthen our Planned Giving Program at Trinity.  Trinity has the "1746 Society," whose members have told us that they have named Trinity in their will.  We haven't done a lot in recent years to recognize them, or even to find out what they would like their gift to DO after they have departed this life.  During the past three years we've received very generous gifts from the estates of Dennis Case and Robert and Orlean Holsinger.  At some point in their life, those three long-time Trinity members decided that leaving a portion of their estate to Trinity was important to them.  Their bequests are providing regular annual income to the church to help us accomplish our goals of mission and ministry, while helping to preserve our historic properties. Maybe there are other members within Trinity who would like to do the same.

So I'm looking for some volunteers to help.  If you have an interest in promoting planned giving, have training in investments and gift vehicles, can help us develop a program of planning for "End-of-Life" (which doesn't just include decisions about giving, but funeral planning, wills, who will care for your children), or can help develop legal instruments for gifts to the church, please contact me!  Trinity, and I, would love to have your help!


Vestry Highlights
At its regular April meeting, the Vestry:
  • Recommended that Shirley Ruedy be accepted as a postulant to become a Deacon.
  • Approved the parochial Annual Report, a compilation of statistics on church services, attendance, membership, and finances, which will be sent on to diocesan and churchwide offices.
  • Created an ad hoc committee to explore ways to name permanent memorials for significant gifts to the parish.


Music News
Gen Bolena, Organist & Choirmaster
Concert & Pentecost Evensong - May 15 at 5pm
Gen Bolena will perform a program of works that highlight the diversity of the organ. A festive Choral Evensong for Eastertide will follow, sung by the Trinity Choir, accompanied by assistant organist Louise Temple-Rosebrook.



Freezing; Summer
Carter Hannah, Noon Lunch Co-Coordinator
Noon Lunch needs a new freezer to be placed in the sexton's office. We need more space and think that an upright freezer would be perfect. If you have one you would like to donate, please contact Kathy Schneiderman (kathy.schneiderman@gmail.com) or Carter Hannah (cnghannah@ntelos.net) or if you would like to help fund a new freezer please send your donation to Trinity Church with Noon Lunch Freezer in the memo line.
 
Sign up posters are in the kitchen for anyone who wants to volunteer to help plan, cook and serve for Noon Lunch this summer or to help pick up donated produce from the Farmers' market for noon lunch. Your generous help is the only way we can continue these missions. Thank you!     


Meals on Wheels Help Needed
Katie Cathey
Did you know that Trinity has a team of drivers who regularly deliver "Meals on Wheels"?  Did you know that it is not just a Virginia organization or even just an American idea?

Curiosity drove me to find out more: Wikipedia notes:

"Meals on Wheels originated in the United Kingdom during the Blitz, when many people lost their homes and therefore the ability to cook their own food. The Women's Volunteer Service for Civil Defense (WVS, later WRVS) provided food for these people. The name "Meals on Wheels" derived from the WVS's related activity of bringing meals to servicemen. The concept of delivering meals to those unable to prepare their own evolved into the modern programs that deliver mostly to the housebound elderly for free or with donations"

Who knew?  And it has now morphed into one of the most successful organizations for feeding the homebound in communities throughout America as well!  What a marvelous way for those of us with wheels to help out those who are without.

Virginia is no exception, nor is our community.  Our Trinity Team has been coordinated with the quiet dedication and excellent efficiency (since 2008) by our own Emily Cochran. 

As Emily recently wrote:  "Trinity is responsible for delivering meals on two routes the third Tuesday and fifth Wednesday of each month.  Two volunteers are needed for each route - one to drive and one to 'deliver' the meal to each client.  Meals are prepared by Armstrong's Restaurant in Verona, at 358 Lee Highway, and are ready for pick up at 11:00 am.  It usually takes an hour or less to deliver the meals on a route."

Muffie Newell has been a volunteer and says the number of meals vary: "Sometimes you will make 1 or 2 deliveries and sometimes 5 or 6."  And, she adds, "... it is VERY rewarding!"

The time has come for Emily to pass the torch and for another coordinator plus some more drivers to step forward:  The coordination is simple, computer/e-mail driven, and would be an ideal volunteer task for someone with young children at home or even a retiree who may be unable to actually deliver but wants to help out.  A few more drivers are also needed for this once-a-month opportunity to give back to your community in helping those who are homebound, sick or elderly.  Did we mention that Emily has the schedule taken care of through June?  Call Emily, Muffie, Lynn Manka or Katie for more information. Katie, 886-6450


Applied Traction
Oakley Pearson
Following on the heels of Ted's excellent article "Traction" in last month's Tribune, I wanted to give some idea of the extended influence of the secondary school in San Rafael. Our school reaches nine communities in northwest Honduras. It is a free school in a country where ALL secondary education is private and for pay. The students are sons and daughters of mostly subsistence level farmers, many of whom may not have been able to finish primary school because of family and work needs. To see the photos of the young high school graduates in a gown with their official high school diploma flanked by their hardworking parents is heartbreaki
ng, heartwarming, and hopeful.
 
The students come from mountain communities in two counties. They walk up and down the mountains a half an hour up to an hour and a half to get to school. They come from the following communities (with approximate population): Barbasco  (400), La Pintada (300), Rio Amarillo (1000), San Isidro (150), Boca del Monte (500), San Rafael (450), Malcote (100), Llano la Puerta (150), and Copan Ruinas.  That's 700  to 800 families potentially affected. Certainly, in the smaller communities most every one is aware of who is fortunate enough to go off to school, graduate, and be able to lift the fortunes of their family and community.
 
The Colegio/Instituto San Rafael exists for these young people because of the support of Trinity Church. Without our monthly payment of the teachers' salaries, assistance in building classrooms, providing computers and satellite Internet and most recently paying the part-time administrator and some transportation costs, there would be no way these eager, spirited, and dedicated young people could get some "traction". Thank you all for your continued support of the Honduras mission work and our wonderful secondary school in San Rafael. 

 


Formation Happenings
Shirley Ruedy, Christian Formation Assistant
Sunday School and Youth
The Christian Education Committee has been inviting persons knowledgeable about different aspects of Trinity life to share their expertise with our youth. So far, Susanna Larner has led a program on the work of the Altar Guild. Rick Chittum has led a group to explore (physically!) the church and its history.  Our thanks to them for these welcome additions to the Sunday School program.

The Sunday School year is winding down (the last classes will be May 1). But before that, much youthful energy will be expended. The weekend of May 14/15 will be busy. First there will be a Spring Youth Event, including participants from the Boys Home, Trinity, Emmanuel, and St. John's. On Saturday, the group will perform a service project at Gypsy Hill Park, then move to Montgomery Hill Park for a cookout and general merriment. On Sunday, Trinity youth will lead the 11:00 service.  As the 15th is Pentecost as well as Youth Sunday, red balloons may appear.

A luncheon to honor and say thanks to our wonderful Sunday School teachers and youth leaders will be held on Sunday, May 15th, at 12:30 in McCracken Hall. Invitations are on the way. Please RSVP.

Our Own Trinity Author!
Rebecca Greeley has turned her pilgrimage adventure on the Camino de Santiago into an Amazon.com e-Book. Those of us who followed her dispatches from the road know what a great observer and writer she is. Initially, she planned to write this book to describe the terrain and sights along the way for those who would not be able to walk it themselves. But what started out as a guided tour quickly turned into an adventure, as walking alone often does, changing a light hearted traveler into a soul searching pilgrim. The book includes photos from the trail, interesting alternatives for completing the journey, and humorous situations. Enjoy the book and don't be surprised to find yourself considering a trip to Spain. The author warns us that this pilgrimage will change your life!

"Helping Hands" Day Camp
A consortium of churches, including Trinity, will again sponsor this popular day camp for rising Kindergarten through rising fifth graders from August 1st through August 5th at First Presbyterian Church.  Rising sixth through twelve grade youth can sign up to be counselors. Activities will include music, crafts, cooking, recreation, and a service project each day. Applications are available from the church office or via email at formation@trinityepiscopal.org.  The fee (for lunches and a t-shirt) is ten dollars and is due with the application. (Scholarships are available.) The deadline for signing up is July 15th and space is limited. For more information call 886-0704 or email helpinghandsstaunton@gmail.com or formation@trinitystaunton.org . You can also visit the camp's Facebook page.

Book Note
As we head toward Pentecost, a book by Richard J. Foster entitled Streams of Living Water: Celebrating the Great Traditions of Christian Faith is worth attention. His introduction explains, "Today a mighty river of the Spirit is bursting forth from the hearts of men and women, boys and girls. It is a deep river of divine intimacy, a powerful river of holy living, a dancing river of jubilation in the Spirit, and a broad river of unconditional love for all peoples. As Jesus says, 'Out of the believer's heart shall flow rivers of living water' (John 7:38)." Foster believes that God is bringing together the "great traditions" or streams of Christian spirituality, some of which have been historically separate, to form this deep river.  
The book is a useful compendium of what Foster defines as six spiritual traditions: Contemplative, Holiness, Charismatic, Social Justice, Evangelical, and Incarnational. Foster examines their strengths and potential weaknesses. Following is a brief outline:
In Foster's view, the contemplative tradition keeps us focused on our relationship with God, values solitude and silence, and emphasizes the life of prayer. Potential weaknesses include a tendency to separate the spiritual from everyday life and to neglect religious institutions and community.
The holiness tradition takes seriously Jesus' command to "Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect (Mt 5:48) and emphasizes grace as the means of spiritual growth. However, it can lead to a rigid legalism and "stinginess" with mercy as well as narcissistic perfectionism.
Charismatic spirituality makes us aware of God's power and the surprising forms it can take, encourages us to recognize and use our spiritual gifts, and keeps us open to the awesome energy and transforming power of the Holy Spirit. However, it can also emphasize emotion at the cost of reason and intellect, giving more attention to the gifts of the Spirit (such as speaking in tongues) and not enough on the fruits of the Spirit (such as how glossolalia contributes to church mission.) Charismatic spirituality can also focus too much on the apocalyptic and the end times so that the life here and now is neglected.
The social justice tradition keeps us aware of our responsibility to work for universal social welfare, links personal and social ethics, and encourages concern for the environment. Unfortunately, it may also become stridently legalistic and get caught up in purely political agendas without a spiritual mooring.
The evangelical stream emphasizes the need for conversion, stresses Jesus' Great Commission, and remains faithful to biblical teachings. However, it may become too parochial, taking such narrow approaches to religious and social issues that it "misses the forest for the trees." Taken to an extreme, it may encourage worship of the Word of God rather than God Himself.
 Lastly, the incarnational stream emphasizes the spiritual in the everyday, affords a spiritual dimension to work and vocation, and encourages us to view the human body as a temple. Through time and experience, we discover that everywhere we go is "holy ground" and everything we do is "sanctified action." Possible weaknesses include a tendency to worship material objects rather than the spiritual reality they embody, pantheism (or the belief that God and the universe are one and the same), and seeking to "manage" God through certain-- often exclusive-- practices or rituals. 
This outline hardly does justice to the richness and breadth of Foster's book.  It will help you identify your own spiritual tradition and encourage you to learn "positives" from the others. 


Novel Theology
Novel Theology meets throughout the year on the 4th Tuesday of the month at 7pm in the Foster Room. Everyone and anyone is invited to attend. The only rule is you must read the book for that month. Come and bring your friends and acquaintances. We have lively discussions.
 
May 24-Go Set a Watchman by Harper Lee.  Maycomb, Alabama. Twenty-six-year-old Jean Louise Finch ("Scout") returns home from New York City to visit her aging father, Atticus. Set against the backdrop of the civil rights tensions and political turmoil that were transforming the South, Jean Louise's homecoming turns bittersweet when she learns disturbing truths about her close-knit family, the town, and the people dearest to her. Memories from her childhood flood back, and her values and assumptions are thrown into doubt. Featuring many of the iconic characters from To Kill a MockingbirdGo Set a Watchman perfectly captures a young woman, and a world, in painful yet necessary transition out of the illusions of the past-a journey that can only be guided by one's own conscience. Led by Tom Tucker.
 
Jun 28-The Prince of Tides by Pat Conroy.  Pat Conroy has created a huge, brash thunderstorm of a novel, stinging with honesty and resounding with drama. Spanning forty years, this is the story of turbulent Tom Wingo, his gifted and troubled twin sister Savannah, and their struggle to triumph over the dark and tragic legacy of the extraordinary family into which they were born. Led by Karen Martin .


Reflections on the Lenten Series
I
Mosque in Harrisonburg
was so thankful to have the opportunity to participate in our Wednesday night Lenten services. I felt the conversations that opened up between the different "faith cultures" to be groundbreaking.
I also feel that any time we can get together to fellowship and break bread we come together as a community. Thank you so much. ¾ Rebecca Greeley
 
That was a great Lenten program. I learned so much about Judaism and Islam that I didn't know. And, the food was delicious! ¾ Anne Hanger
 
There were many highlights, but the two most memorable moments for me were two prayers - one done in Arabic by a Muslim in a Christian church and one done in Hebrew by a Jew in an Islamic mosque. ¾ Shirley Ruedy
 
Lent this year was learning, sharing and discovering that there are people
that are not just like us; but we love them anyway. ¾ Sue Mattox
 
People are people; love is love and honoring our fellow human being simply because he/she IS one of God's creations. Is what it's all about. If we can step out of our preconceived notions, drop the pretense that "we" have all the answers, God's love flows - simply flows - in Heavenly abundance!  Thanks be to God that we have had this precious experience. Don't know of anyone who was not moved just a little with this endeavor. Amen! ¾ Katie Cathey
 
Below is an article by Emily Sproul that was published on April 14, 2016 on www.dioswva.org
Interfaith Lenten Program Builds Connections
Episcopal, AME, Jewish, and Muslim communities gather for understanding
 
Five Wednesdays. Five potlucks. Five gatherings of perhaps the most diverse group of people our little Shenandoah Valley community has to offer. This was Lent 2016 for six local faith communities, and the results were eye-opening, enriching, and beautiful.
Several years ago, a small group of local churches began meeting together for food and fellowship and the opportunity to get to know and understand each other on a deeper level. Members of Trinity Episcopal, Emmanuel Episcopal, and Allen Chapel AME were focused on developing relationships and bridging the race gap that still exists in many local churches.
Last year, the three churches gathered for a Lenten series on service-working alongside each other to provide food, clothing, and other donations to local charities. This year, the focus broadened to include our Jewish and Muslim neighbors in Staunton and Harrisonburg in an interfaith conversation based on the five pillars of Islam: belief, worship, fasting, almsgiving, and pilgrimage.

Meeting the "Other"

I walked in that first Wednesday and was astonished to see the church dining room overflowing with nearly 100 people. Even better, I didn't recognize a significant portion of the people - they were NEW! Being a curious person, I get giddy about NEW, because NEW means stories - who are you? Where did you come from? Why did you move here of all places? Tell me about your family, your life, your faith.
In all my years, I had never met someone from Iraq. And I would guess that most folks in Staunton haven't either. The first night, we heard from Bahroz Rasheed, who emigrated to the U.S. from Iraq at the age of 6. As I thought more about Bahroz's life and his experiences - how the war in Iraq must have felt to him as he grew up so far from his homeland - my perspective changed. Pulling into a parking lot one afternoon, I noticed an oval sticker in the back window of a car. It simply said IRAQ. Prior to our Lenten programs, I would have assumed it was a soldier who had served in the war. Now I thought of Bahroz, and others who call Iraq HOME.

A Deeper Understanding

Each Wednesday evening we met in each other's fellowship halls and sanctuaries, sharing food and faith. Each evening's program featured one representative from each of the faith traditions who gave a short talk about the evening's topic - what worship or fasting or pilgrimage meant to that individual on a personal level. Then the rest of us were given the opportunity to ask questions or add our own insights for clarification.
At our final gathering at the Islamic Center, we met in the prayer room for our discussion. My daughters were delighted to choose headscarves and leave their shoes at the door-immersing themselves in a culture most of their schoolmates know nothing about.
I watched with deep gratitude as my nine-year-old son stood to pray the nighttime prayers with his Muslim brothers. As he hesitantly approached the line of men and boys at the front of the prayer room, one of the men took him gently by the arm and pulled him closer, closing the gap between them. Though neither my son nor I understood the Arabic recitation of the Quran, we followed the postures in the prayer, putting our foreheads to the floor in submission to God. We felt the connection to the Divine, best expressed in the connections we had made with our Jewish and Muslim brothers and sisters.

Finding Unity

We shared our stories, our beliefs, our hopes and concerns. With our Jewish friends, our Muslim friends, our African American friends. We broke bread with them. We laughed with them. We prayed with them. We shared ourselves with them. Until there was no us and them. There was only us.
Jesus gives us The Great Commandment: "Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets."
To be able to love our neighbors as ourselves requires that we understand that our neighbors are LIKE ourselves. I am grateful to everyone who organized our Lenten program this year that we were given the opportunity to learn, understand, and LOVE these neighbors. And I look forward to continuing to grow these relationships between our faith communities. Thanks be to God.



Contra Dance at Trinity on May 26
Bill Wellington
There will be a contra dance in McCracken Hall on May 26 from 7:30 to 10:30 pm.  The band will be "Pete's Posse" featuring Pete Sutherland on fiddle, banjo, and piano, Oliver Scanlon on fiddle, and Tristan Henderson on guitar and foot percussion.  I will be teaching and calling the dances.

Contra dancing is a form of square dancing.  Instead of dancing in four couple sets, however, dancers form long lines facing their partners, and there is no set number of couples.  Contra dancing was popular throughout America from Colonial times till the end of the 19th Century.  It remained popular in northern New England up until the time it was "rediscovered" in the 1970's and then made popular again by a new generation. 

"Pete's Posse" hails from Vermont and includes three fantastic musicians.  Pete Sutherland represents the generation that helped revive traditional dancing.  Pete has played at countless dances all across America.  He has also toured with the bands Metamora and the Clayfoot Strutters.  Fiddler Oliver Scanlon is one of Pete's protégés, and he and guitarist Tristan Henderson represent a new generation of dancers and musicians.

The upcoming dance at Trinity is public event and the Trinity community is especially invited.  Admission will be $10.00 for adults and $5.00 for children aged 10 - 17.  If you have any questions please call me at 885-0233.
 

Music Feeds Us, Benefit Concert
Music Feeds Us announces its 2016 Chamber Music Concerts
to Benefit the Blue Ridge Area Food Bank
 
Saturday, May 14, 7:30 PM, Trinity Episcopal Church, Staunton
Sunday, May 15, 3:30 PM, Westminster Presbyterian Church, Charlottesville
 
The Virginia Consort , a chamber chorus, will join the quartet as a special guest. The concert program features works by Haydn, Schumann and Hamza El Din. The concerts are free; however, all monetary donations and gifts of food are gratefully accepted for the Blue Ridge Area Food Bank.
 
Music Feeds Us , as part of their educational outreach program, will also perform at Tye and Woodbrook Elementary Schools, and Charlottesville High School as they continue to introduce classical music and stringed instruments to students.
 
Celebrating their fifth anniversary season, Music Feeds Us has provided over 82,000 meals for the Blue Ridge Area Food Bank . The 2016 goal is to exceed a cumulative 100,000 meals. To reach this goal they need to raise $4500 at their benefit concerts. 1 in 6 children in the Blue Ridge area struggles with hunger. Every $1 donation will provide four nourishing meals for our neighbors in need. Music Feeds Us thanks you in advance for your attendance, generosity and your donations!

Three Notch'd Road: Sacred Mysteries
Three Notch'd Road: The Charlottesville Baroque Ensemble presents:
Sacred Mysteries: A Narrative of the Life of Christ
with Nathan Medley, countertenor and Christopher Jacobson, organ

Friday, May 27, 2016 at 7:30pm  / Trinity Episcopal Church, Staunton
Sunday, May 29, 2016 at 4:00pm / Emmanuel Episcopal Church, Greenwood
 
$20 - Adults / FREE - Students (available online and at the door)
 
Three Notch'd Road presents a rich program of sacred German music with a chamber ensemble of instruments and voices.  Works of J.S. Bach are presented alongside those of Buxtehude, Schelle, Biber, and Praetorius, interwoven with the ancient Christian chants that inspired them.  Featuring countertenor Nathan Medley and organist Christopher Jacobson, this concert encompass the liturgical year from Christ's Advent to his Ascension. 


Administrator Notes
Laurie Clements, Parish Administrator
Gifts
  • Memorial contributions were given in loving memory of Martha (Mopsy) Page.
  • Thank you to the anonymous donor who made a contribution toward some plantings for our church flowerbeds. (Two members of our Property Committee, Matt Shreckhise and Emily Cochran, have recently been working on ideas to spruce up the entrance of Johnson Street. This has been much appreciated as we proceed into spring and gather thoughts and work toward an idea on what type of plants to put at this entrance.)

Directory Updates
Address Update
Bud & Martha Flanders
P.O. Box 466 Fishersville, VA 22939
 
Email Update
Ted Cathey: tedcath@verizon.net

Calendar
If you open the following link, you will see our Trinity Church calendar. You may wish to bookmark this page as it will automatically update with any changes.
Birthdays
1
Ryan Bolena
Bob Duke
Edmund McElroy
 
2
Susie Moses
 
5
Claire Moody
 
6
Carrie Tucker
 
7
Anna Vanhoy
 
8
Lizzie Cahalin
Shannon Jordan
 
9
Sandra Morgan
Muffie Newell
 
10
Michael Bugas
 
11
Kristin Jordan
Will Smoot
 
13
Emily Cochran
Betty Vellines
 
16
Dick Coleman
Richard Obenschain
 
17
Stuart Cochran
Molly Diment
 
18
Ellen Pentz
 
19
Mary Jones
Tricia McPherson
Lucie Oechslin
Louise Temple-Rosebrook
 
21
Crystal Fiechtl
 
22
Selby Hardwick III
Lolo Kable
 
23
Mike Griffith
Mark Peterson
August Schwaner
Leigh Stisser
 
24
Virginia Gillock
 
25
Scott Herring
Beverly Hollberg
 
26
Judith Edwards
Elliott Johnson
Fletcher Lockhart
 
27
George Fellows
Harrison Gillock
Toni Nelson
 
28
Dennis Kivlighan
 

30
Dana Flanders
Andy Middleton
Charlotte Stisser