The Bridge
The Weekly Newsletter of St. Mark's Lutheran Church by The Narrows                  
 February 27 , 2019 
Sunday Worship      
8:30 a.m. Blended
9:45 a.m. Contemporary
11:00 a.m. Traditional
To hear podcast recordings of our Sunday Sermons
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St. Mark's Staff
Sigi Helgeson, Visitation
Ingelaurie Lisher, Youth and Family
Music Ministry
Contemporary Music Ministry
Manager of Finance and Operations
Office Coordinator
       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
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Wednesday Church Night Tonight

5:00-6:30 p.m. Dinner: Tacos, chips and salsa, black beans, salad
 (Suggested donation: $5)
5:00-5:30 p.m. Little Angels Choir (Preschool-K)
5:30-6:00 p.m. Joyful Noise Choir (Grades 1-2)
6:00-6:45 p.m. Jubilation Choir (Grades 3-5)
6:00 p.m. Praise Team Rehearsal
6:15-7:20 p.m. Midweek Renewal 
6:15-6:45 p.m. Holy Moly
7:30-8:00 p.m. Evensong

Weekly Giving Update

We are still processing the gifts that were given in this last week of February, but we are happy to say that we have received gifts to the General Ministry Fund that went above our budget for the month, so we are starting to get things back on track.  Thank you to all of you who helped make this happen!  A more complete report will be available in early March, and we are hopeful that this trend will continue in the last four months of this fiscal year so that we can support all the vital ministries of our congregation. 

Lent Begins Next Wednesday
We hope you can join us on Ash Wednesday, March 6, for a special worship service at 7:30 p.m. in the sanctuary. Please check the church calendar for information about other normally scheduled events that night. 

Mexico 2019 Mission Trip

If you would like to be considered for going on this year's trip (June 21- 29) 
please be sure to turn in a completed interest form by March 15;  copies are available in the church office or on the church website. Interest in this year's trip is very high, so it is important to register your interest by this date. If you have questions, please contact Sarah Moore or Melanie Summerour.

Memorial Services

You are welcome to gather with us as we remember these saints and commit them to God's eternal care:

Richard Moe: Saturday, March 2, at 2:00 p.m. at Pacific Lutheran University, Lagerquist Hall

Helen Frazier (John Frazier's Mother): Thursday, March 7, at 1:00 p.m. at St. Mark's

Elaine Hansen: Saturday, March 9, at 2:00 p.m. at St. Mark's

Shrove Tuesday Pancake Feast

Tuesday, March 5,  5:30-7:00 p.m. Fun for the whole family! Pancakes, live jazz music, and children's activities.  

Grief Support Group

There will be a Grief Support Group meeting in the Fireside room on Friday, March 8, from 10 a.m.-12:00 p.m.

Lenten Walk to Jerusalem

Join us for a virtual trek to Jerusalem during Lent. This year we plan to travel west to reach our destination.  Each week you are asked to report in miles of exercise (walking, running, biking, etc.). Distance traveled and highlights of rest stops will be reported in The Bridge. Please stop by our table in the church hall after worship to sign up and receive your copy of "Walking to the Cross, a Lenten Devotional."

Children and Youth Faith Formation

Sunday morning classes for children and youth take place at 9:45 a.m. 

Lent Intergenerational Event - Join the Children & Adult Faith Formation teams, Sunday March 10, at 9:45 a.m. in the Parish Commons as we come together to start our journey through Lent. It will be an interactive learning event with Guest Author Heather Clauson reading her new book Thorn. This will be in place of regular Sunday School and Adult Forum classes.

Thursday Nights for youth at St. Mark's (6-12th gr.) February 28 Youth Choir 6:30-7:30 p.m. in the Choir Room; 7:30-8:30 p.m. Marimbas in the Youth Wing. 

JR/SR ALYVE (6-12 gr.) Seattle Thunderbirds Hockey  against Portland--Saturday, March 16, 4:45 p.m.-9 p.m.-ish. Cost: $20.00 per person (includes all fees), plus whatever you purchase at the concession stands. Sign up by March 3 with payment to guarantee your spot. Parents are welcome to attend. 

Sunday, March 10 is the LAST chance to sign up for the youth Summer Service Trips!  We need to make the minimum #s of 10 youth for the Rocky Boy trip-June 28-July 6 and 5 youth for the Idaho Service trip-July 14-19 OR I am pulling the plug on the trips for the summer. The Rocky Boy trip to Montana is NOW open to all youth grades 7-11(current 2018-2019 grades). See your emails and/or the youth board for trip forms and info.

Adult Faith Formation

Sunday Adult Faith Formation
9:45 a.m. Adult Forum Parish Commons Classroom #2  (West) 

11:00 a.m. Crossways Bible Study, Parish Commons Classroom #2  (West) 

Braving the Wilderness: the Quest for True Belonging and the Courage to Stand Alone by Brene Brown: This Lent discussion group begins March 10 at 11 a.m. in the Fireside Room. Join Ingelaurie Lisher as we explore the wilderness and how in this untamed and unpredictable place we find belonging and the sacred. Books can be purchased through Amazon.

Wednesday Adult Faith Formation
Morning Bible Study:  The 9:15 a.m. Wednesday morning Bible study meets in the Parish Commons #1 Classroom. We begin gathering at about 9:15 for coffee and visiting. Newcomers are welcome and would best arrive at 9:15. We are people with varying faith and Bible experiences, who help each other by sharing our questions and insights. We are studying the book of Romans. For more information, contact Linda Durant at 253-363-8202 or

Noon Text Study Luncheon, Parish Commons Classroom: Come for this lively discussion of the texts for the upcoming Sunday, hosted by the preacher.

Wednesday Midweek Renewal, 6:15 p.m., PCC: St. Mark's Reads discussion.

Lydia Circle: Meets first Tuesday of the month at noon. Bring your own lunch. We use the Lutheran Women's  Gather magazine. We welcome NEW members! Come join us.

Fully Alive Bible Study, Tuesdays at 5:15 p.m. in the Fireside Room. Our topic is Women of the Bible, The Beautiful and The Ugly. Please join us. 

New Adult Faith Formation Class on Forgiveness during Lent
Living well through Lent: Practicing forgiveness with all my heart, soul, mind and strength. This five-week class will begin Wednesday, March 13. Participants will receive a Lenten devotional book with a reading for each day during Lent starting on Ash Wednesday and ending on Easter. The class will focus on scripture and readings from the book around the topic of practicing forgiveness. Each participant will be encouraged to take a FAITH step towards the practice of forgiveness. Commitment to being at each of the Wednesday nights is optimum for getting the most out of this study and Lenten practice. Giving up bitterness and resentment (for Lent) while practicing forgiveness as a faith practice is the intention. 

Sign up in the Narthex and receive your devotional book on Sunday, February 23, or Sunday, March 3. 

A free devotional book is available when you sign up. There is also an e-book available for those who would prefer that option and anyone can read the book without being a part of the class.  
Pastor Sigi will facilitate the class discussion, some time will be spent in small groups.  Contact Pastor Sigi for more information or questions at

Third Quarter

Those in the third quarter of life, ages 50-75ish, are invited to share hope, laughter, and love through active events.

Thursday, March 21, at 6:00 p.m. we will meet in the Pacific Ave lobby of the Tacoma Art Museum for free museums night. You are also welcome to join those who can come to Zeek's Pizza on Pacific for Happy Hour at 4:45 p.m. ($3 off pizza; $3 off some beers; $1 off wine).

Speak Up: Moral Voices

The Peace and Justice Committee at St. Mark's suggests we all consider using our moral voices to advocate for justice in the following areas: food, housing, creation, and immigration.

The Washington State Legislature is moving along with cut-offs for hearing bills fast approaching. If you would like to learn the status of a particular piece of legislation and know the bill number you can go to Bill Status on the Legislative website here.

Some of the legislation to watch from the perspective of Moral Voices are summarized here: 

The governor's 100 percent clean energy bill is now ready for a vote in both chambers after it moved through fiscal committee earlier this week.The bill continues to gain public awareness. College students organized a tour to travel the state and gather support for the 100 percent clean electricity proposal.

In a Senate committee, stakeholders came out in support of a career-connected learning proposal. The bill would increase apprenticeships, paid internships and other work-based experiences.

Another bill is making sure Washingtonians have an option for high-quality health insurance coverage through a public healthcare option bill. The effort to provide this healthcare moved into the finance portion of the bill process this week.

Two proposed bills pertaining to behavioral health are scheduled for public hearings. A bill that would create a University of Washington teaching hospital dedicated to behavioral health also moved onto the next legislative step this week. The governor made the UW announcement when he rolled out his budget and policy proposals in December. The hospital would provide patients with a unique model of clinical care, complete with features such as an inpatient facility and tele-psychiatry care. A bill that would improve treatment for opioid use disorder had a public hearing this week in a Senate committee. The proposed treatment model for opioids is based on successes in other states. 

All three bills to protect the Southern Resident orca were passed out of policy committee and have moved to the next step in the legislative process. You can visit the governor's website for an overview of his various orca recovery proposals and the work from the Orca Taskforce. 

Chase the Chill

The temperatures are falling and the seasons are changing which means it's time for us to Chase the Chill   again this year. All knitters and crocheters are invited to create warm hats and scarves to be donated to shelters in Tacoma and to distribute to those who are living outdoors. Yarn has been donated for this project and is free to anyone who would like to make a hat or scarf to contribute. Please stop by the church office to pick up yarn or to pick up a Ziploc bag filled with a hat and scarf to keep in your car to give to anyone you see on the streets who might need some warmth. You could add other things to the bag that you think might be useful to someone, i.e. a bottle of water, a granola bar, a small gift card to McDonald's for a cup of coffee or hot chocolate, whatever you choose. For more information talk with Eleanor Sherry or Linda McKeller .

St. Mark's Preschool Registration for 2019-2020

St. Mark's Preschool registration for the 2019-2020 school year is now open. All registration information can be found at . Please contact Katie Jones with any questions at  or 253.752.4929.

Lutheran Community Services Northwest Fundraising Luncheon: Real People. Real Solutions.

Sunday, March 3, 12:30-3:30 p.m., STAR Center, 3878 S 66thSt., Tacoma

Join the St. Mark's table for food, philanthropy, and fun!  Sign up at the table in the narthex before February 17, or talk to Pastor Shjerven. There is no cost, but there will be a chance to donate.

Women's Interfaith Conference

WHEN: Saturday, March 9th, 8:00am-5:00 p.m.
WHERE: Curtis Junior High School, University Place
HOW MUCH: $49 pre-register ($59 at door, includes lunch)
Our theme this time around is "Seeking Peace: Our Journey." You can look forward to:
  • Pre-conference morning yoga or meditation
  • An opening ceremony with words from Tacoma's Peace Laureate Melannie Denise Cunningham
  • 3 sessions of workshops (36 workshops to choose from led by 42 amazing local speakers!)
  • 50+ vendors (retail, non-profit and faith communities)
  • hands-on service project opportunities supporting the YWCA and Days for Girls
  • Lunch, networking...and new friendships!
  • Additionally, AM is also proud to present "An Evening with Elizabeth Smart" at the Rialto Theatre the night before the conference
Register today...and bring a friend!  We look forward to seeing you in March!

Pierce County Family Caregiving Film Series

August: Osage County is the next film in the family caregiving series offered by Pierce County Aging & Disability Resources. The 2014 movie stars Meryl Streep and Julia Roberts in powerful performances as an acid-tongued cancer patient and her stressed-out daughter. In the film, caregivers will recognize the challenges of balancing caregiving roles among family members and the spectrum of emotions faced as caregiving becomes a necessity.  Memories, old hurts, and raw emotions surface to pull families apart even as caregiving needs continue to increase.  The film is recommended as one of the top five caregiving films by The film is Rated R for very strong language, sexual references and drug use.   August: Osage County  will show on Saturday, March 9.  Doors open at 10:30 a.m. and the film begins at 10:45 a.m. at the Grand Cinema, 606 Fawcett Avenue in Tacoma.  Complimentary popcorn will be provided by Advanced Home Care. Free tickets must be obtained in advance at  (Click on News & Events) or by calling the Aging & Disability Resource Center (ADRC) at 253-798-4600.

The PLU Religion Department welcomes you to the 13th Annual David and Marilyn Knutson lecture at 7 p.m. in the Chris Knutzen Lecture Hall in the Anderson University Center. Dean Douglas will speak from her book, Stand Your Ground: Black Bodies and the Justice of God  (Orbis, 2015). "Stand Your Ground law signals a social-cultural climate that makes the destruction and death of black bodies inevitable and even permissible. . . . This book is an attempt to untangle the web of social, cultural, and theological discourse that contributes to stand-your-ground culture as well as to provide a theological response." The lecture is free and open to the public.

Church Office Hours

The church office is open  Monday-Friday from 8:30 a.m.-noon, 1:00-4:00 p.m . and  Sunday from 9:30-11:00 a.m.

*The door to the office is locked during preschool hours (8:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m.); please knock or ring the doorbell and someone will let you in promptly!

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Send it to by 5:00 p.m. on Tuesday. All items will  run for two weeks prior to the relevant date, and will be edited for length. Don't forget to send your member notes and news!