Volume 73 - No. 1 | January 2021
JANUARY TIDINGS
Worship on Sunday, January 3 @ 10am:
“Overwhelmed with Joy.” Epiphany Sunday based on Matthew 2:1-12 with Communion, celebrating Mike Westberry's new title, Minister of Music
Don't have Facebook? Don't worry, you can still view the live service from any device by following this link: https://www.facebook.com/Trinitychurchnorthborough/      

A step-by-step tutorial on how to access Facebook Live, click HERE

Have your Bible, a candle and lighter ready and create a worshipful space. Maybe with a cross, a nice tablecloth, or other devotional items that are meaningful to you.

Please have a piece of bread (or crackers, chips or cookie) and cup of juice (or water, tea or coffee) ready for Communion.

Replay on Verizon channel 31 and Charter channel 191
Sundays (previous week's) at 6pm and Thursdays at 8:30am. 

Emily is here to help you. If you need technical assistance please email her at trinitychurchnboro@gmail.com or call her (508) 614-8989 during virtual office hours and she will walk you through each step.
QUICK LINKS
MESSAGE FROM PASTOR VALERIA
I've heard some people are going to burn their 2020 calendars as an act of relief and joy that this incredibly difficult and painful year is over. For those who still use paper calendars! 
We've all been saying, next year will be better. With the spring coming, the vaccine being distributed - it can only get better! All of our hopes are riding on 2021: to be able to be with friends and family again, to be allowed to hug them, to visit in hospitals and nursing homes, and to gather for worship, coffee hour, and other meetings and events here at Trinity. 
I can't wait! 
But, we still have several months of physical distancing ahead of us, and we really don't know how many. We don't know what 2021 will bring. And even when we are able to do more of the things we love and enjoy, the effects of COVID-19 will be felt for a very long time. It will have changed everything, and us. 
What have you learned about yourself and our world this year, what have you discovered? What do you appreciate now that you used to take for granted? 
I anticipate things will start out very slowly, hesitantly, thoughtfully. With more awareness. That's a good thing. Instead of jumping right back into things the way they were, we will be more intentional about what we do and why we do it. Do I really want to spend that much time in the car, rushing from one place to the next? Or would I rather spend time doing things I enjoy, with people I care about.
A new year is always an opportunity to start over. You know, the New Year's resolutions, etc. But this year, especially, we get to choose how and where we spend our time and our energy. We don't have to go "back to normal." We can prioritize and focus on what we value most.
I realize you have obligations in your professional and personal lives that you can't say "no" to. But you still have the freedom to choose. And especially as Trinity Church we have the freedom to choose how we want to "be the church." Nothing will be the same as it was before. So let's not expect it to be. Let's look at this as an opportunity to push the reset button. To listen for God's guidance instead of jumping right back into activism and "the way we've always done it." Let's listen for the Spirit of God nudging us, challenging us, and leading us. 
If you have some extra time on your hands I invite you to sit in stillness each day and ask for God's guidance for Trinity Church. What is God's intention for Trinity? Whom does God want us to reach? 
That's a question we should always be asking. But right now, with congregational life as we knew it having been shaken to the core, it's even more pertinent that we ask - and wait for an answer. Ask over and over again, patiently and persistently, and God will answer. 

Let me end by thanking all of you for your continued support of Trinity Church and its ministry under such different and challenging circumstances. You've been flexible and adaptable, you've given generously, you've stayed connected and you've shown your appreciation for what we, the staff and leadership of Trinity have been doing. That means a lot. Thank you. 
And also a personal and sincere "thank you" for your generous Christmas gift! It is much appreciated.
Whatever 2021 will look like, it will be the year of God's favor. It will be blessed. You will be blessed.
"Do not be afraid" was the message of the angels that proclaimed the birth of our Savior Jesus Christ. Do not be afraid. God is with us. 
With prayers of hope and healing for you and your families, and for our world,
Pastor Valeria.
WORSHIP SERVICES ~ SUNDAYS, 10AM
Sunday, January 3: “Overwhelmed with Joy.” Epiphany Sunday based on Matthew 2:1-12 with Communion, celebrating Mike Westberry's new title, Minister of Music

Sunday, January 10: “You Are My Beloved Child” based on Mark 1:4-11 with remembrance of Baptism

Sunday, January 17: The Social Justice and ONA Teams will lead worship in celebration of Martin Luther King Day

Sunday, January 24: "God’s Vision for Trinity Church"

Sunday, January 31: “Encourage One Another and Build Each Other Up," based on 1 Thessalonians 5:1-11. 
SUNDAY COFFEE HOUR
Every Sunday
Coffee Hour before worship
on Zoom @ 9:30am
Meeting ID: 861 4930 6259
Password: 201552
Meeting Link:
WORDS OF INSPIRATION
"For many of us, this may be the first time in our lives that we have felt so little control over our own destiny and the destiny of those we love. This lack of control initially feels like a loss, a humiliation, a stepping backward, an undesired vulnerability. However, recognizing our lack of control is a universal starting point for a serious spiritual walk towards wisdom and truth. – Richard Rohr
A MESSAGE FROM THE DEACONS
This year, Pastor Valeria will be on a sabbatical from April 12 to July 18. The Deacons have contracted with Rev. Lee Atherton of Marlborough, MA, to be our on-call pastor while Pastor Valeria is away, and to lead worship on three Sundays.

The other Sundays will be led by Deacons and other members of the church. We will be putting together a steering committee to plan worship, and will be exploring different formats, including round-table discussions, interviews, and, yes, lay-sermons! (See David Fountain’s notice of a Lay-Sermon Workshop in this issue of Tidings.)

We wish Pastor Valeria all the best on her sabbatical, and we are excited to bring you some creative worship services in her absence.
LAY PREACHING
Everyone has one Sermon in them.

Yes, you have, residing in you...at least one “good” sermon waiting to come out. Our winter Lay-Sermon Workshop will help you give it “voice.” Rev. David Fountain will lead a four session (Feb. 17, 24, March 17, 24) Zoom workshop to give it life this winter. While Pastor Valeria is on her spring sabbatical, we will enjoy some of them to lend an exciting lay perspective to the virtual pulpit (on Zoom). Teens and adults welcome!

Want to know more? Sign up with the church office by February 9, and David will contact you about the classes and how easy and actually, well...fun it is to share your message with the congregation.
ANNUAL CONGREGATIONAL MEETING
January 31, 2021 at 11:30am

The Annual Meeting will take place on Sunday, January 31st following our Worship Service. Because of the pandemic we will be meeting via Zoom with the option to call in over the phone rather than in person. However, we hope that will not deter anyone from attending. We need your voice and your vote to make important decisions for Trinity’s ministry in 2021.

Information for our Annual Report should be in the church office no later than Sunday, January 3, 2021 Your help and cooperation are appreciated.

Please email Emily at trinitychurchnboro@gmail.com
PASTOR PARISH RELATIONS COMMITTEE
We promised to share our new Covenant with you and so present the opening statement and the first section.
Trinity Church Community Covenant
Trinity Church’s mission is to fill its people with the love of God and share God’s love with all the world. At Trinity, with prayer that God will guide us on this spiritual journey as a community, we will always strive to show respect and love for each other in all that we do.

  • We promise to speak face-to-face, honestly and openly. We promise to make our Church a safe haven of love, validation and kindness.
  • We will listen with an open and non-judgemental mind, and try as hard to understand as to be understood. We will treat each other with dignity and respect.

We ask that as we share each part of the Covenant over the next few months, that you read it, understand it, and feel it in your heart.

As we mentioned before, please feel free to address any comments or questions to any of the members of the PPRC.

Barbara Baker, bakerb2939@gmail.com
Wade Robbins, schatze2512@yahoo.com
FROM OUR CHRISTIAN ED DIRECTOR
During the month of December, we focused on the various parts of our advent wreaths and what those parts signified for the kids. Families also worked on creating parts of our Children’s Christmas service by recording themselves reading various parts of our one candle liturgy. A special thank you to Emily who put all the pieces together beautifully.

The focus for Faith Foundations this month will return to social justice as we focus on poverty and how we can bring light to others. Our service project will be a fundraiser to help provide uniforms to children in the Worcester school system who have been hit particularly hard by the current circumstances in the country with close to 1,300 youth homeless in the schools.
We are in need of teachers and assistant teachers. Sherry preps all the material and sends it to teachers to preview before Sunday. If you can help please email her at trinitycenorthboro@gmail.com. It is a wonderful way to spend some time with our youth and cultivate intergenerational relationships.
Youth Group
Our youth and teens lit up Trinity! We had a fantastic turnout for decorating as well as a terrific response by the Trinity community and the Northboro community in general in donations of lights and decorations. It was a very fun afternoon watching the church get lit up! Thank you to Linda, Valeria, Amy and Glen for being our extra adults to help out! As well as special thanks to Larry and John who worked out all the electricity!
Our google calendar can now be found under the Youth tab on the Trinity website. We hope this makes it easier to sync with your personal calendar! https://calendar.google.com/calendar/u/0/embed?src=trinitycenorthboro@gmail.com&ctz=America/New_York
Upcoming Dates
We will now be meeting via zoom due to the cooler weather. This link will also be the one to use.

The Zoom will begin at 11:05


Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 872 7270 9342
Passcode: 780687

Youth Group Dates
Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 893 1102 0507
Passcode: 572551

Youth Group will occur via Zoom on 1/1, 1/8, 1/22, 1/28

There will be a variety of games to play together as well as planning for our fundraiser for Worcester public school uniforms.
EVENTS @ TRINITY
Zoom Bible Study
Mondays @ 1pm
Want to connect with other Trinity people while we are self-isolating? Join us for an informal Bible study on Mondays at 1pm via Zoom. Each week we will select a chapter or passage of the Bible, and discuss what it means to us.

Jean Leif will be facilitating. Email her at jhleif@gmail.com (include your name) for log-on information.
Grief Support Group
If you or someone you know recently lost a loved one and is looking for a safe space to share your experiences with others, you are welcome to join our grief support group. The group now meets weekly on Zoom, every Thursday at 7 pm. For more information please contact Pastor Valeria at trinitypastorvaleria@gmail.com
Coffee or Tea with Pastor Valeria on Zoom
Wednesdays @ 9am
Chat with Pastor Valeria on Zoom, Wednesdays at 9am.

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 954 033 518
Password: 569713

Dial by your location
+1 929 436 2866 US (New York)
Meeting ID: 954 033 518  

Emily is here to help you. If you need technical assistance please email her at  trinitychurchnboro@gmail.com  or call her (508) 614-8989 during virtual office hours.
Saturday Breakfast Fellowship
The first and third Saturday @ 9am (Saturday, January 2nd & 16th)
In January, we’ll have two Breakfast Fellowships, one on the 2nd and one on the 16th.   

The Fellowship on January 2nd will just be a fellowship gathering.  This is an opportunity for us to stay connected on Zoom.

At our January 16th Breakfast Fellowship meeting, I want to talk about Missions.  Some questions to think about:
  • Why are people missionaries? 
  • Does God want us all to be missionaries?

There are some Bible passages listed below which talk about missions.  I’m also including a couple of links to articles about missions.  Let’s talk about these on the 16th.

For more information or to add yourself to the Saturday Breakfast Fellowship email list, please contact Tom Danforth at tomdan4@gmail.com
Tom
 
Bible Passages:
Mark 16:15,  Romans 10:13-15,  Matthew 28:18-20,  Psalms 96:3,  1 Chronicles 16:24
 
Links:
World missions – What does the Bible say?
 
I am a Hindu. This is how I perceive Christian missionary work today
SOCIAL JUSTICE TEAM
Trinity Church Book Discussion Group on Zoom
6-weeks starting Thursday, January 7th from 7-8pm

The Social Justice Team will be sponsoring a discussion of Waking Up White by best-selling author Debby Irving. In her book, she describes sensing racial tensions in her personal and professional relationships, and her journey from “white oblivion to white awareness”.  

The book may be purchased at Amazon or Thrift Books.

To join Trinity's Social Justice Team, or to hear more about our projects, contact Jean Leif, jhleif@gmail.com
FROM OUR PASTORAL CARE TEAM
We Are Hiring!
 
We all have Holy Spirit infused gifts, given to us by God to help us serve those in need, and to show Jesus’s love in our world, and right now we are seeking anyone who want to use their gifts of compassion, empathy, servanthood, joy, encouragement, prayer and more to join our Pastoral Care team. Do you have the “gift of gab”? Perfect! 
 
“Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God's grace in its various forms.” 1Peter 4:10 NIV
 
If you are thinking “This is a job for the more ‘feminine’ among us who are much more suited for this kind of stuff” (or anything along those lines), consider this: Has there been a time in your life when you were ill, or struggling in some way? Can you think of other people who encouraged you, lifted you up, or stood by you as you heal? Now can you imagine yourself coming alongside others that may be struggling, and sharing the love that Jesus put in your heart to help them on their journey? Love has no gender, and we know the impact that more diversity on our team can have.
 
On the Pastoral Care team, you will find a group of positive, encouraging, fun & dedicated people who share the desire to serve others in their time of need. From making visits (when acceptable to do so), to being a friendly voice on the phone, or writing encouraging and heartfelt notes, and delivering a thoughtful gift, our team seeks only to bring light & love to those in need, and to ensure that none of our family feel far from our collective Trinity heart.
 
We plan to broaden our reach in 2021 and we have faith that God is working in and through our Pastoral Care team to reach more people. We are ready for you to join us!
 
Please email Donna Miller at dmm4863@gmail.com (put “pastoral care” in the subject line), if you have questions and/or would like to join our awesome team!
SUPPORT TRINITY
Give to Trinity Church
These are challenging times for many. If you are not financially impacted by the current situation we ask you to prayerfully consider increasing your support to Trinity Church, to make up for those who cannot meet their pledge, so we may continue to do God's work through Trinity Church. Thank you for your faithful, generous giving! 

Please make your checks payable and mail them to Trinity Church:
23 Main St
Northborough, MA 01532
 
You can also use “bill pay” and have your bank mail a check to us on a regular schedule set up by you, at no cost.
 
Did you know your shopping can earn Trinity money?
Shop at your convenience all year!   
Trinity Church is set up as a charity on iGive! Please consider downloading the app or shopping through the iGive site and a percentage of your purchase will be sent to Trinity Church! This does not cost you any extra money, the donation comes from the stores you already shop at.

Please consider shopping through iGive to help support Trinity.

You shop. Amazon gives.
  • Amazon donates 0.5% of the price of your eligible AmazonSmile purchases to the charitable organization of your choice.
  • AmazonSmile is the same Amazon you know. Same products, same prices, same service.
  • Support Trinity Church by choosing it as your charitable organization at smile.amazon.com 
NEED HELP?
Mental Health:
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or text HOME to 741741 for the Crisis Text Line.

National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI)

NAMI Central MA (Worcester): Phone: 508-368-3562 Email: namiworc@hotmail.com

NAMI Metrowest (Marlborough-Framingham): 
Help Line: 508 251 9595 Email: NAMIMetroWest@NAMIMetrowest.org Website: www.namimetrowest.org

Addiction/Substance Abuse Disorders:
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) National Helpline 1-800-662 HELP (4357)  www.samhsa.gov/find-help/national-helpline

The Mass Substance Use Helpline
Phone: 800-327-5050 Website: www.helplinema.org

Worcester Area Intergroup (Alcoholics Anonymous)
Phone: 508-752-9000 (24/7) Email: steps@aaworcester.org Website: www.aaworcester.org

Domestic Violence:
The National Domestic Violence Hotline is offering assistance and safety planning 24/7
  • 1-800-799-SAFE (7233)
  • TTY 1-800-787-3224 o If you’re unable to speak safely, you can chat online, or text LOVEIS to 22522

MA SafeLink MA Statewide Toll-Free Domestic Violence Hotline 1-877-785-2020  

Food Assistance:
Northborough Food Pantry 
Wednesdays 9 - 10:30 a.m.
Thursdays 6:30 - 8 p.m.
Phone: 508-393-6897 Email: info@nfpantry.org Website: www.nfpantry.org/nfp  
CHILDREN & YOUTH
GSA Link
The Link that Connects

The GSA Link is a project connecting local GSA high school and middle students to collaborate, share ideas, and socialize in a SAFE space. LGBT and allied high school students are welcome.

Little Links K-5th Grade Virtual Link Up! www.facebook.com/events/1663328133841922

Middle School Virtual Link Up! www.facebook.com/events/1278622175669344

High School Virtual Link Up! www.facebook.com/events/930364390725387

For more information please contact:
Melissa at projectgsalink@gmail.com or 508-735-1267
Grotonwood and Oceanwood Camperships
Since overnight camps had to be canceled this summer, Central Association will offer a campership of $100 for each camper who registers for any of the fall or winter camps.

For more information please contact Susanne Fleming supergram777@aol.com
WORSHIP VIDEOS
Watch Sunday's worship using the link below. You do not need to have a Facebook account to view this video!
Subscribe to our YouTube channel and watch a
selection of Pastor Valeria's sermons and our worship music.
COMMUNITY EVENTS
Community Meal Take-Out

We have resurrected Community Meals but in a to-go manner and we need your help.   
We will be ordering $5 meals from local food establishments and distributing them to our community meals guests to-go, every Wednesday at 5:30 p.m. in the parking lot of Trinity Church. Various organizations have committed to monetary donations for these entrees. But, you can't have a meal without servers, water and dessert. We are looking for volunteers to sign up to donate a case of water or 2 dozen individually wrapped desserts and/or stand in the parking lot and deliver the meals to guests in their parked cars. All guidelines of social distancing will be observed. 
If you are interested in helping, please see the available opportunities and sign up here: 

To donate towards the purchase of meals, please make your checks out to "Helping Hands Association" with "Community Meal" on the memo line, and mail them to Northborough Helping Hands, P.O. Box 383, Northborough, 01532.  
NATICK COMMUNITY-SENIOR CENTER’S ONLINE PROGRAMS

Mindfulness Meditation with Sharon  Meets every Thursday, 1-1:40 pm, free. This meditation is audio only and participants are muted during the meditation portion. Everyone is welcome to join for some guided, some quiet and some reflection with Q & A and sharing. Email  skirby@natickma.org  to receive the Zoom link (different each week.)
Christmas Tree Removal
Sponsored by BSA Troop 101 Northborough

The town-wide Annual Christmas Tree Removal sponsored by Troop 101 will take place on Saturday, January 9, 2021.

NEW THIS YEAR- Offering online payment!


Scouts will pick up your tree on Saturday, January 9th, 2021.
To be added to our pick-up route, simply sign up and pay before Friday, January 8, 2021 by 5 PM (or call 508-281-9972 and leave your information). Then just leave your tree near the curb before 8:30 AM on Saturday, January 9th, 2021.
Cost: $10 per tree

Feel free to inform your friends and neighbors of this service. Please note: pickup is only available in the town of Northborough.

Questions? Email:  Nborotroop101Treepickup@gmail.com or call 508-281-9972.
Thank you for your continued support of Troop 101.
ONLINE CHURCH DIRECTORY
Are you interested in being added to the online church directory?
Please use the instructions HERE to add yourself and your family to the Trinity Church online database.


If you need any assistance connecting to the online directory please contact the church office:
(508) 393-8156 or trinitychurchnboro@gmail.com
IN OUR THOUGHTS AND PRAYERS

If you know of someone who is hospitalized, ill, suffering from the loss of a loved one, or troubled in some way and in need of a pastoral call, please call Pastor Valeria at the church office, 508-393-8156.
Deadline for February Tidings
Please be sure to have all your info for the February Tidings in to the church office by Sunday, January 24. Your help is appreciated!
TRINITY CHURCH
23 Main Street
Northborough, MA 01532
(508) 393-8156

Virtual Office Hours :
Emily is working from home. Please email her or leave a message on Pastor Valeria's voicemail on the church phone. (Please note Fridays are Pastor Valeria's day off and she will not check her voicemail. In case of an emergency please listen to her voicemail message for her cell phone number.)

Monday: 9am - Noon & 1pm - 2:30pm
Tuesday: 9am - Noon & 1pm - 2:30pm
Wednesday: 9am - 10:30am & 12:30pm - 2:30pm
Thursday: 9am - Noon & 1pm - 2:30pm
Friday: 9am - Noon & 1pm - 2:30pm

Rev. Valeria Schmidt, Sr. Minister


Trinity Church is an Open & Affirming / Welcoming & Affirming Congregation

Trinity Church's mission is to fill its people with the love of God
and share God's love in all the world.