Getting Grounded in Christ
An Invitation to Advent Conversations
Dear Friends,

During the season of Advent this year, we will be having some conversations at each of four weeks about the coming of Christ, which we will celebrate on Christmas Day. But the conversations we will be having will be about something more personal, and that is about the coming of Christ in our own lives.

In these times when the whole world is being tossed to and fro by the pandemic, by racism, by climate change, and by political polarization, it’s a good time to get some ground under our feet so that we can move through these chaotic days in a more graceful and self-giving way; and that is where Christ comes in, not as an idea but as a living presence accompanying us each step of the way.
Participants may wish to read The Universal Christ by Richard Rohr. You can order a copy here. Let Valerie know if you need help ordering the book or defraying the cost.
At our conversations (which Mary and I will lead), we will explore Christ’s presence in ourselves, in our relations with others and in the world around us, and in our deepest concerns about the meaning and purpose of life. This we will do not by thinking about it, but through a contemplative awareness fostered by Richard Rohr’s book, The Universal Christ. Our first conversation will come by Zoom on Sunday, November 29, after the liturgy. Before leaving, we will decide together about a meeting day and time for the three meetings after that. 

You will do well to get a copy of the book to use, not for study so much as for spiritual reading in the couple of chapters assigned before each meeting (for the first meeting it will be the preface, “Before We Begin" and Chapter 1).

We hope you will join us, and if you have any questions, contact Ted Coolidge by phone (860-301-3603) or email

Yours faithfully,

Mary and Ted
Youth Group Sign Painting Nov. 20
The youth group meets this Friday, Nov. 20, 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM, in the chapel. Masks are required. We'll be painting yard signs for our home-bound parishioners with messages of love and encouragement. We'll also play a few team-building games.
This Sunday (Nov. 22) we will be meeting on Zoom before the service. Sunday school will start at 9:00 AM and be done by the beginning of the church service. Children should have a piece of paper and something to write with.

Time: Nov 22, 2020 09:00 AM Eastern Time (US and Canada)
Meeting ID: 896 7028 8614
Passcode: 4UnvyB
Where Do We Go from Here?
From the front lawn on Main Street to the persons we care for in our daily lives, the Church of the Holy Trinity has been reaching out among its members and to the community at large with Christ’s faith, hope, and love. This is such demanding and important work! Never before has this community faced such ongoing challenges as are routine for us today.
And it is for this reason we are inviting the congregation to participate in three ways:
1) spiritual support for all members through an Advent book study of The Universal Christ by Richard Rohr (see story below), which will also introduce contemplative prayer (the prayer of the heart)
A resurgent pandemic has forced us to abandon in-person worship for now. Here are some steps we are taking to support and strengthen our community until we can meet safely. For more details, read Mary's letter here.
2) establishment of a voluntary pastoral care team which will meet together monthly with Ted and Mary for support and companionship as we walk with others who are struggling in this challenging time

3) small covenant groups of 6 -10 people from within and without the church for ALL of US that will meet monthly to support each other.
That’s a lot of support!  But when you’re carrying heavy loads that’s what you need. More...
Note: The Rev. Mary wants to hear from you! Please reach out to Mary at 203-915-0561 at any time with your concerns, or if you just need a listening ear.
15th Annual Ekklesia Christmas Show Dec. 5-7
This year is the 15th annual performance of Ekklesia Contemporary Ballet's Ahavah: The Story of Christmas! The dance company is excited to bring this tradition to the Middletown community. Taking you back in time to experience the astonishing true story behind Christmas, Ahavah is a delight for the whole family. Ekklesia Contemporary Ballet and Ekklesia School of Ballet will virtually perform an abridged version. The filmed performance will be released Saturday, December 5, at 2:00 PM and will be available through 12:00 AM on December 7. All proceeds from the performance will benefit St. Vincent de Paul Middletown on behalf on Ekklesia and the Church of the Holy Trinity. More...
Lay Readers Needed
We need readers for services. This involves recording a video of yourself on your phone (or computer) reading the lesson assigned to you (or have someone else record you). You then send the video directly to Mary via text (203-915-0561) or email (texting works most easily). There is no need to dress up or go anywhere special or be in anyway perfect!  A more or less quiet spot outside or in your home or office is great. Valerie is happy to help you with the technology. If you are interested in reading (and we really need people!), please contact Valerie in the church office by phone (860-347-2591) or email.  The first Sunday in Advent is November 29, so if you record that day’s reading, the video will need to be submitted by November 25. Thank you for participating!
Sunday Service at 9:30 AM
Morning Prayer for Healing
The Rev. Mary is the officiant as we observe Christ the King Sunday together with St. John's North Guilford. It will be a healing service with special prayers for all who need healing. Instead of a regular sermon, the Rev. Mo Lederman of St. John's Church will lead a guided meditation on gratitude in honor of Thanksgiving. Music by Steve Horst on cello and Judy Castellano on dulcimer cello. The Lord's Prayer will be done to an original composition by Peter van Siclen. The service will be broadcast on Facebook Live. (Note: You do not need a Facebook account to watch Facebook Live.) Connecticut's best coffee hour will follow on Zoom. Links to our Sunday services may also be found on our web site and Facebook page at any time, as well as in eNews.

To join Zoom by computer or smart phone, here's the link.
Meeting ID: 493 334 0227
Password: 034832

To join Zoom by phone (audio only):
+16465588656,,4933340227#,,1#,034832# US (New York)
Meeting ID: 493 334 0227
Password: 034832
The Rev. Mary Barnett
Upcoming Service Schedule
Nov. 22: Healing service from Anglican Common Worship 2000, with healing practice led by the Rev. Mo Lederman, cello by Steve Horst and the Lord’s Prayer by Peter Van Siclen.

Nov. 29 (ADVENT 1): Spiritual Communion, music by our praise band, the Rev. Mary preaching. Followed by short coffee hour and the beginning of the Advent program (see lead story) with Richard Rohr's Universal Christ and contemplative prayer practice.

Dec 6 (ADVENT 2): Visit from St. Nicholas, followed by zoom coffee hour and contemplative prayer program.

Dec 13 (ADVENT 3): Spiritual communion with collaborative preaching
from Yale Divinity School interns Lizzie Robbins and Luke Smithers, followed by Zoom coffee hour and contemplative prayer program.

Dec 20 (ADVENT 4): Lessons and carols with Ekklesia and our joint choirs from Holy Trinity and St. John's. The Rev. Mo will sing the Magnificat. Zoom coffee hour and contemplative prayer program.

Dec 24: Special online service for Church of the Holy Trinity, collaborative preaching with the Revs. Mo and Mary. Time TBD.

Dec 27: Lessons and carols with ECCT.

Jan. 3: Zoom service with the Rev. Mary, Dwelling in the Word.
Salvation Army Angel Tree
This year you have two options to give to children in need for Christmas. You may either go to this link, Salvation Army Angel Tree Middletown, to purchase pre-selected toys, which will be delivered from WalMart to the Middletown Salvation Army, or you may call the church office at 860-347-2591 and ask for the names and tag numbers of specific children to shop for yourself. Holy Trinity has committed to providing gifts for 25 children this year. The deadline is Dec. 7-10. Thank you for your generosity!
In-Gathering of Pledges Continues
It's not too late to return your pledge cards to support the work of our parish in the coming year. This is an opportunity to respond to all that God has given us in this life by offering a portion of the money with which we have been entrusted. It’s never an easy thing to either ask for or to give money, and what makes this process different in the church, rather than in a secular charitable organization, is that our offerings of money in the church are part of our prayer. It’s a way of saying to God, “Thank you,” and “I trust you.” What we give financially connects us to God and to God’s people. We are not just giving to benefit another. We give because it also benefits us and deepens our response to God’s generous love.
Poinsettia at Christmas
Those wishing to remember a loved one at Christmas with a poinsettia may fill out the attached form and mail it to the parish office by December 13.
Middletown Community Thanksgiving Project
Registration Ends Today!
We are once again participating in the Middletown Community Thanksgiving Project. For those families in need of a basket, registration is taking place now on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM at Amazing Grace Food Pantry, 16 Stack St., through Nov. 19. For details on registration and pickup of Thanksgiving baskets, click here.
Holy Trinity is donating 200 pies to the project. If you would like to help defray the cost for these pies, please place your donation in the offering plate clearly marked “Thanksgiving Pies." If you write a check, please make it out to Church of the Holy Trinity, with "Thanksgiving Pies" on the memo line.  You may also mail in your donation. Thank you for your generosity!

For those wishing to get a take-out Thanksgiving meal, the soup kitchen at St. Vincent dePaul is doing a take-out meal from 11:00 AM -1:00 PM Thanksgiving Day, and the Whey Station across the street is doing a take-out meal from 2:00 PM to 5:00 PM.
Order Your ABC Chart for the Holidays
With the holiday season fast approaching, now is the time to order your hand-made ABC Wall Chart from Holy Trinity's House of Many Talents. The wall charts make wonderful gifts for newborns and small children learning their ABCs. They sell for $40 and come in 19 colors. To order or for more information, contact the church office by phone (860-347-2591) or e-mail or call Sharon Sheedy (860-346-7937) or Ruth Hubbard (860-632-0525).
Sunday Lunch Program
First Church in Middletown has answered the call from St Vincent DePaul to provide 80-100 Sunday lunches to residents of The Men’s Shelter at the YMCA and The Eddy Shelter (the homeless shelter in town). First Church been providing meals each Sunday since April. The cost of one Sunday’s meals is $500.

The program supports local restaurants by purchasing "grab and go" meals from them for distribution on Sundays. The church is asking for financial support from Middletown community to support the program. This can be done in two ways. Make a donation to First Church, 190 Court Street, Middletown, CT 06457 and write “Sunday Lunch Program” in the memo line. The other way you can help is by supporting the local restaurants by either ordering takeout or enjoying outside dining if that is your pleasure. More...
Maryellen Shuckerow, executive director of St. Vincent de Paul Place, has thanked the Rev. Mary for Holy Trinity's $1,000 donation to the soup kitchen. See her letter here.
Week of November 15
  • Birthdays: Jon Irwin
Week of November 22
  • Birthdays: Lynn Silvestro, Gina Morgan, Jean Maynard
  • Memorials: James Inglis
Parish E-Mail Contacts
The Rev. Mary Barnett:

Valerie Hall (Parish Administrator):
Steve Horst (Warden):

Andy Milliken (Warden):
Online Giving to Holy Trinity
Now you can contribute online to Holy Trinity through Tithe.ly, a safe and secure giving platform that allows you to donate once or on a recurring basis! Click on the link below to give through the church website. You can donate funds using a credit card or your bank account. For your pledge or other recurring gift, you can donate weekly, monthly, or semi-monthly, specifying a day of the week or date(s) during the month. You can also designate a onetime gift to specific church activities and organizations.
Episcopal Church Memes
Ed. Note: A prayer answered.