The Bridge
The weekly newsletter of St. Mark's Lutheran Church by The Narrows                  
   May 11 , 2016 
Sunday Worship      
To hear podcast recordings of our Sunday Sermons
Click Here
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 - Chili dogs, 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.  
All-Congregation Meeting on May 22nd at 12:15pm!

Please join us at our All-Congregation Meeting on  Sunday, May 22 at 12:15pm!
Your presence is very important at this semi-annual meeting where we take stock of where we are, make decisions about where we are going and how we will get there, and celebrate our life together as the Body of Christ at St. Mark's. Lunch will be served and childcare will be provided, so please make every effort to be with us!  

Learn, Serve, Grow

This coming  Sunday, May 15 , is the Day of Pentecost and we are inviting every worshipper to bring a Learn, Serve, Grow Response Form to church and then place it in a large basket during the during Hymn of the Day. This is a beautiful way to celebrate the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives and re-commit ourselves to the vocation we all have as baptized Children of God.  Click here to read the Learn, Serve, Grow booklet which describes the many opportunities that exist at St. Mark's, and then take time to fill out this downloadable Response Form  as an expression of your own desire to live in faith. We look forward to another amazing year of ministry together!

Interest Meeting for November Habitat for Humanity Trip to Guatemala 

Once again, St. Mark's will be putting together a team to work with Habitat for Humanity in Central America. This year, we hope to go to Guatemala on November 5-13, 2016. An Interest Meeting for this trip has been scheduled for this coming Sunday, May 15 at 12:15pm. Please join us if you would like to hear more about this great opportunity! We'll be meeting in the Parish Commons classroom and lunch is served, beginning at noon. 

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!

Shared Housing Services : Housing 4 Success

Mark Merrill, the executive director of Shared Housing Services emailed to say " thank you to St. Mark's for all of the support and your belief in our mission."  In the youth program, "We are working on trying to put together move-in packages for the youth that would consist of full-sized set of sheets, blanket, pillow, socks (basic men's & women's ankle socks), bath towels & washcloths.  Most of the youths coming into our program only have what they are able to carry in a back pack or two. So getting them stabilized and settled with items that allow them to get a good night's sleep is important.

Currently, we at St. Mark 's  have supplied 3 move-in packages. Our goal is to supply a total of 10. Please, help with this goal by donating a part of a Move-In package.

Other greatest needs:  Toothbrushes 
Full size deodorants (men & women)
Feminine Hygiene products
Full sized Shave Cream (men & women)
Any African American specific hair or skin products
Other hygiene items

Shared Housing Services : Housing 4 Success provides transitional housing, case management and training to homeless youth and young adults in Tacoma. Please, place items in the basket marked GSA: SHS outside the church office. Questions: contact Roz Lueck-Mammen  253.565.6398

LWR Thanks You!

Thank you for all the generous donations for the Lutheran World Relief quilts and kits we blessed and shipping! We sent 150 quilts, 98 baby care kits and 155 personal care kits.

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: )

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, 9:45 &10am, Adult Forum/Class, Parish Commons Classroom
Coffee and Conversation with the Council-- As we prepare for our semi-annual congregational meeting on May 22nd, you are invited to join Bill Klancke, Council President, and Anna Ahrens, Vice-President to discuss plans for mission and ministry in the upcoming months, and look at a budget that will fund these plans.  Your voice in this conversation is encouraged and appreciated!

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 Our last session of this spring will be June 8 (we will resume Sept. 14).

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   The Holy Spirit.  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

Sunday, May 15th  Sunday AM Classes- 9:45-10:45am
  • 5/6th grade in regular classroom
  • 7/8th grade class in Youth Room-Pentecost with Bruce and Carl
  • 9-12th grade Fireside Room with Clara
Thursday, May 12th at St. Mark's for youth grades 6-12!
  • Youth Choir 6:30-7:30pm in the Sanctuary with Cooper
Summer 2017 Luther 500 Festival-We've got 5 deposits down for people to attend in 2017! 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.  Leaders Meeting-Sunday, May 15th 11am in the Library. 

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 training session that was to be held on Saturday, May 14 has been cancelled. Watch for the next opportunity.  Sign up sheet will be in the Narthex or you can contact  Party Reinkensmeyer at 253-857-7977, .

Have an item for the bridge?
Send it to by 8am on Tuesday. All items will be run for 2 weeks prior to the relevant date and will be edited for length. Don't forget to send your member notes and news!