The Bridge
The weekly newsletter of St. Mark's Lutheran Church by The Narrows                  
   May 4 , 2016 
Sunday Worship      
To hear podcast recordings of our Sunday Sermons
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St. Mark's Staff
Phil Rue, Visitation
Ingelaurie Lisher, Youth and Family
Music Ministry
Contemporary Music Ministry
Manager of Finance and Operations
Office Manager
Just Shopping

Just Shopping is an Internet Fundraising Program at St. Mark's. It's part of a three-tiered plan to eliminate our building debt by 2023. On-line purchase made through our website with affiliate companies helps pay off our building loan. Thank you for your support and please share this internet shopping opportunity with your family and friends! For more information, click here to visit our website. 


       Contact Us  
St. Mark's Lutheran Church by The Narrows

6730 N. 17th St.
Tacoma, WA 98406

Office: 253-752-4966
Preschool: 253-752-4929
Join our mailing list.
Wednesday Church Night Tonight!

5:00pm Little Angels Choir
5:15pm Dinner is served -Ground turkey with penne pasta, french bread, salad, and dessert. Suggested Donation $5/per person.
5:30pm Joyful Noise Choir
6:00pm Praise Team Rehearsal
6:00pm Jubilation Choir
6:15pm Holy Moly
6:15pm Midweek Renewal
7:30pm Prayer Service

Childcare is provided from 5-8pm for children up to 5 years of age while parents attend meetings, Bible study, and worship.  
Save The Date  for our Semi-Annual Meeting of the Congregation on May 22nd!

Southwestern Synod Educational Gathering

Join your fellow ELCA members of our Southwestern Washington Synod for our Educational Gathering at Gloria Dei Lutheran Church in Olympia on Saturday, May 14th from 10am-3:30pm. The day will be full of educational workshops on Congregational Leadership and Congregational Mission, plus worship together. Lunch is included.  If you would like to attend with a group from St. Mark's, led by Pastor Jan Ruud, please call or email the Church Office to sign up. The registration cost will be covered by the congregation.  (For workshop choices and more information, pick up the flyer on the Welcome Center).

Lutheran Volunteer Corps Bunco!

Join Lutheran Volunteer Corps for Bunco: featuring fun, food, and prizes for the whole family!  Saturday, May 14 from 4-7pm  at St Mark's Lutheran Church by the Narrows. $10-20 donation at the door, raffle tickets available for purchase, and all proceeds to benefit LVC in Tacoma. Questions? .

Here is a link to the Facebook event.

Scholarship Applications Available for Lutheran Higher Education

Each year St. Mark's offers scholarships to members who are pursuing higher education at a Lutheran institution.  To qualify, you need to have been accepted to a Lutheran University or Seminary and complete the application process.  You may pick up a hard copy of the 2015-16 Scholarship Application in the Church Office (see file marked "Scholarship Applications"), or email Pastor Shjerven to receive the form as an attachment ( The deadline by which all materials need to be received is Sunday, May 22nd.  

St. Mark's is Currently Accepting   Applications  for Two Key Staff Positions

With the departure of Jan Pence and Becki Christian this summer, we have begun the process of looking for two new staff members to serve in the following roles:

Custodian/Hospitality Coordinator:  This position provides overall custodial and hospitality services to the church facility on a weekly basis. This includes, but is not limited to, (1) setting up and cleaning up rooms, (2) coordinating and performing general cleaning, (3) providing weekly food and beverage services, (4) organizing and supporting special functions, (5) contributing to the overall care and running of the church, and (6) providing oversight and assistance to the Custodial Assistant and Hospitality Host in maintaining cleanliness of the church building and entry ways. This is a full time position.

Office Coordinator/Receptionist: This position is responsible for the coordination and support of the day-to-day activities of the church and program staff, including: (1)    Greets, welcomes, and directs persons on the phone or in person helping to make St. Mark's a place of grace and graciousness to all who enter its doors.    (2)   Maintains office equipment and supplies.  (3)    Creates and produces printed materials necessary for worship and parish life. (4)    Contributes to the care and running of church functions by interacting with other church committees, members, and staff.  (5)    Recruits and coordinates volunteers. (6)    Maintains parish records.  This position is 35 hours per week.

Application forms and full job descriptions are available at the church office. We are accepting applications until Sunday, May 15.
If you have questions or would like more information, please contact Pastor Ruud by email at: or by phone at 253-686-0442. Thank you!

Mexico Mission Fiesta Fundraiser

The yearly Cinco de Mayo fundraiser to support the Mexico Mission trip will be held on Friday, May 6th.  Tickets are on sale Sundays, following each of the three services. $5 per person or $20 for a family of 4 or more. Doors open at 5:00pm for crafts, games, enter-to-win, and displays that illustrate the work of the trip; dinner and program begin at 6:00pm.
LWR Personal Care Kit Build Update!

Thanks for all who joined in the LWR Kit Build and delicious Syrian-themed Potluck this past  Sunday ! Approximately 35 participants teamed up to build 156 LWR Personal Care Kits in approximately 40 minutes! Kits will shipped to the LWR warehouse in Baltimore, MD on  Thursday, May 5 A gracious thank you to those who donated supplies so we exceed our goal, provided funding for shipping and logistical support! Look for the next LWR Kit Build in October for School Kits (supplies will be collected in August)!

Plan For Giving Update

Thank you to everyone who has submitted a Plan for Giving in 2016-2017! We have currently received plans from 215 households, which matches what we received in all of 2015, and we still have the new fiscal year ahead of us to grow that number. Total pledges so far exceed $730,000, so we are well on our way to funding a proposed overall budget of approximately one million dollars. If we have not yet heard from you, please join all the others and submit a Plan for Giving in the very near future! This is extremely helpful to our Church Council as they make plans for our Congregational Meeting on  May 22 at 12:30pm . Online submission of your plans for giving can be done here. 

Cooks Club! Tabouli

"Cooks Club" is for those who enjoy creating in the kitchen and enjoying fine food together. 

Imagine the enticing smells of freshly chopped mint and parsley, beautiful  golden olive oil, the fine texture of finely ground bulgur wheat, all combined with  the brilliant red of ripe tomatoes and the intense zing of fresh lemons. Put it all together and it makes Tabouli, the wonderful picnic salad so loved by the people of Lebanon.

Join us as we explore fresh and lively tastes of the Middle East, Lebanon in particular. Make a delicious meal from foods that are mentioned in the Bible. Learn to make hummus, stuffed grape leaves and even baklava.

On June 12th the Cooks Club of St. Mark's will meet in the kitchen to work together to create a delicious traditional Lebanese meal and to enjoy this delicious and delightful meal together. Suzy Reynolds will be "head chef" for the evening.

Watch for the table in the Narthex, sign up and get out your apron. See you on June 12th. 

Take Them A Meal Volunteer Recruitment

Take Them A Meal: Continuing a long church tradition of providing food to support members who are ill or having a life difficulty, St. Mark's  is compiling  a list of members who would like to be potential meal providers. Potential meal providers would be notified by e-mail of meal requests.  Please call or  e-mail Janet Duris if  you would like to be a potential meal provider or if you would like additional information.  (Telephone: (253)582-4991 / e-mail: )

Family Housing Network  May 7-13! Thank You!

Thank you to all the volunteers who have signed up for various tasks during our upcoming Family Housing Network host week, May 7-13 . If you will be interacting with the families during their stay with us, you will need to fill out some simple paperwork. Many of you have done this already. If you haven't (and didn't do so during our host week last October) there are forms in the church office which you can fill out and leave there. Thanks!
St. Mark's Preschool
St. Mark's Preschool is accepting registration packets for the 2016-2017 school year. Classes are available for children ages 2.5-6 years old.  To get more information and/or a registration packet, visit the preschool's website, or contact Anne Zimmerman (253) 752-4929 M-F 8:30-2:00.

Help Wanted
Ushers, Communion Assistants, Lectors--for all services!  Training available. Call or email the church office if you are interested (253-752-4966 or 

Adult Faith Formation

Sunday, 9:45am, Adult Forum, Parish Commons Classroom
The Adult Forum provides opportunities to reflect on Christian faith in light of current events and the daily decisions we need to make. Topics vary, leadership is shared, and the conversation is lively.

Sunday, 11am, Adult Class, Parish Commons Classroom
Adults dig deep into a biblical or theological text, presented as a series
Fully Alive Bible Study,  Tuesdays, 5:15pm, 
  Questions? Contact Sherry Maiura (253) 549-4222.

Wednesday Women's Bible Study, 9:30am, Parish Commons Classroom. 
We are studying the Book of Acts. Questions? Contact Linda Durant at (253) 363-8202 or

Text Study Luncheon, Wednesdays, Noon, Parish Commons
At Bible Study Luncheon men and women read and discuss the scripture texts appointed for the upcoming Sunday. The pastor who will be preaching on the texts guides the conversation.

Lydia Circle (meets the first Tuesday of each month), Noon, Parish Commons Classroom 
A new women's Bible Study/Circle has been organized. Bring your lunch to the Parish Commons Classroom. All are welcome!  Contact: Louise Lindeman,
Midweek Renewal, Wednesday, 6:15pm, Fireside Room
"Worship Matters"-Why do we do what we do when we gather on Sunday mornings for worship?  Together we will explore the roots of the liturgy and how it finds diverse expression in Christian congregations throughout the world.  All are welcome!

Third Thursday" Theology on Tap"- 
for young adults meets at Wingman Brewery at 7:30pm on the third Thursday of each month. Contact Pastor Jan Ruud, 

Cafe Circle, Fireside Room, 10-11:15am
This group has been formed especially for younger women. The group meets the first Friday of each month for coffee, pastry and conversation around issues in our lives, looking at how faith might affects those issues. For further information, contact Celesta Smith at  or Diana Busch at
Children and Youth Faith Formation             
This week's Spark Notes is   Paul and Silas.  Spark Notes are fun activity sheets printable each week to supplement Sunday School lessons. 

Sunday school children will participate in the festival of Pentecost on May 15 in the following ways:

1.  With a processional at the beginning of  9:45 worship service, waving symbols of Pentecost
2.  They will join their voices in singing the refrain of "Spirit of Gentleness," one of the opening hymns.
3.  Children from 4's to 4th grade will join the congregation for Communion portion of service as well.
4.  At the end of Sunday school hour, our 4th grade teachers will host a birthday cake in the Children's Faith Center  in celebration of the birthday of the Church.

Please plan on a prompt start to Sunday school activities on  May 15

Thank you to Sunday school children for your great response to donating  items for the LWR personal care kits.  Together you made an impact in the total need and St. Mark's response to providing personal care items for refugee families in the Middle East.

Sunday , May 8th Sunday AM Classes-9:45-10:45am
  • 5/6th grade meets in Pastor Ruud's office with Michelle and Mary.
  • 7/8th grade Communion with Bruce and Carl-meet in the Kitchen.
  • 9-12th grade with Zach-the group will be walking to Cutter's Point, leaving at 9:50am from the Fireside Room. Bring $$ for treats and a drink.
Thursday, May 5th at St. Mark's for youth grades 6-12
  • Youth Group 5:30-6:30pm in the Narthex with Ingelaurie and Nate
  • Youth Choir 6:30-7:30pm in the Sanctuary with Cooper
Summer 2017 Luther 500 Festival- It's not too late to sign up to be a part of the 500 Anniversary Celebration of the Reformation in Wittenberg Germany, July 19-25, 2017. Cost: $1500.00 (hotel lodging, 2 meals per day, group morning and evening prayer, and all admissions/tours to "Luther" sites). Airfare is on your own-we will meet up in Wittenberg. Please see the youth board for more information or contact Ingelaurie Lisher. $110.00 registration deposit per person, plus a $110.00 lodging deposit-1 per room) is due ASAP. ½ of remaining balance due June 2016, final balance due December 2016. This is an intergenerational trip.
VBS 2016- August 1-5th 9:00am-12:15pm at St. Mark's-Cave Quest! Registration materials available in the Children's Faith Formation Wing or in the Narthex beginning May 15th. Youth and adult volunteers are needed to help out with the week. Please contact Ingelaurie Lisher at or at 253-752-4966 to see how you can lend a hand.
  • Leaders Meeting-Tuesday, May 17th 6:45pm in the Library
Montana Team Meeting-Wed. May 25th 6-7:15pm in the youth room for adult leaders and youth participants. 

Connect and Care TimeBank One Year Anniversary!

It is now one year since we initiated the CCTB!  The CCTB continues to grow.  New members add to the wonderful variety of opportunities to share skills and time with others.

The next training session will be held on Saturday, May 14 at 10:00 After this training new membership will go from an annual fee of $10.00 to $20.00, so join now!

Sign up sheet will be in the Narthex or you can contact  Party Reinkensmeyer at 253-857-7977, .

We are celebrating one year of having the TIMEBANK.  Adult Forum on  May 1 at 9:45  will feature. CCTB updates and stories from members who have used the TimeBank.  Please plan to attend!
Other News
We received word of the death of Virginia Faye Zoutte.  She was laid to rest at Tahoma National Cemetery.

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