The Bridge
The weekly newsletter of St. Mark's Lutheran Church by The Narrows                          August 5, 2015        

Grace Notes:


On July 14th, 19 youth and adults headed to Detroit MI to spend a week at the ELCA Youth Gathering. We joined over 30,000 other youth from around the United States as we learned to Bear each other's Burdens, Break Chains that hold us back from making a difference in the world and Rise Up Together to proclaim the name of Jesus and strive for Peace and Justice in all of the world.
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Sunday Worship Times      
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.
PLU President Tom Krise will preach this Sunday!                           

We are glad that President Krise can be with us this Sunday, August 9 to preach at all three worship services. St. Mark's has a strong connection to Pacific Lutheran University and we are thankful for all the ways that it has blessed us over the years. We hope you can join us in welcoming President Krise with his wife, Patty, and in hearing the Word of God that is proclaimed!



Welcome Back Luncheon for Pastor Shjerven    

Join us for a "Welcome Back" luncheon with Pastor Rebecca Shjerven. Pastor Shjerven is concluding her sabbatical this week and we look forward to her return with joy and thanksgiving! We hope that you can join us in the Parish Commons on Sunday, August 16 at 12:15pm for a special luncheon in her honor. During our time together, Pastor Shjerven will share stories and highlights of her sabbatical with us. If you plan to attend, please add your name to the sign-up sheet in the Narthex this Sunday or contact the church office by phone or email! This will help us greatly as we plan the meal.


Camp Discovery VBS This Week!                             

We are having a wonderful week at Camp Discovery VBS! With 92 kids and over 50 volunteers there is a lot of fun being had each day! We are learning that Jesus is at work through us! He gives us courage, his wisdom saves us, gives us faith and his love to share. Each day we are experiencing his love through games, music, storytelling, a Bible challenge, crafts and snack. Kids and adults are learning together that God loves us! We're looking forward to the rest of the week and sharing some of our music with the congregation during the 9:45am service on Sunday, August 9! Thank you Katie Jones and Erika Thompson for all your work in organizing this exciting week!

Music on the Lawn


This Saturday (Aug. 8) will be alive with music of St. Mark's members at the home of Suzy and Bob Reynolds. Tickets are now on sale for this beloved Summer event. Call the church office for more information. Childcare will be available.  Proceeds go to benefit the youth of St. Mark's.  


Hike to Plummer Peak 


Friday, August 21st, the Care of Creation Committee is sponsoring  a hike to Plummer Peak near Paradise. Everyone is welcome to go along on this trip. If you are not interested in a vigorous hike but would like to browse around the surrounding area of paradise,  the visitor center, and the Inn, please consider joining.  We will be meeting at the church at 8am to carpool to the trailhead. 
Plummer Peak is about 2 miles up, 1,000 foot elevation gain, with great views of Rainier (of course) and south to Mount Adams and the Goat Rocks. The Paradise area has the visitor center, meadows to stroll, and the beautiful remodeled National Park Inn with Ranger talks.
If you have any questions call or email Tom Hulst  at 253-460-2683 (


Conversations on Racism 


ELCA presiding Bishop Elizabeth Eaton and William B. Horne, II will be hosting a live webcast conversation on the complexity and implications of racism Aug. 6 at 8 p.m. (CDT). Through its social statement - "Freed in Christ: Race, Ethnicity, and Culture" - ELCA members have expressed this church's calling to confront racism and advocate for justice and fairness for all people. The statement is grounded in the conviction that the church has been gathered together in the joyful freedom of the reign of God announced by and embodied in Jesus. That reign has not come in its fullness, but the message of God's "yes" to the world breaks down all dividing walls as we live into that promise. - See more at:


Join the Altar Guild!


Join us!  No white gloves required! The AltaGuild is looking for a few more members to help set the Lord's table each Sunday morning and on holidays.   Members work in two shifts (8:00-9:45am and 10:45-12:30pm) before, after and between services. You'll have full training on the tasks and meaning surrounding them.  Plus you will work with a partner until you feel comfortable doing the work on your own.  In addition to Sunday morning duties we also need someone who would be willing to wash and press the linens each week.   If you are interested in joining this quiet behind the scenes ministry please contact Linda Dieckhoff at 253-376-1446 or   


Adult Faith Formation                             

BACK BY POPULAR DEMAND! A Bible Study series on the Book of Acts, led by Traci Drake, will continue through August 9 at 11:00am on Sunday morning. All are welcome!


Children's Faith Formation

August 9, Lutherhaven Campers

leave Sunday, August 9th. Please be packed and ready at the by the church by 8:15am. 


Summer Story Time - runs through August 23 during the 8:30 and 9:45 am worship services. Children age 5 through 3rd grade (incoming) will start in worship with their families. After the Prayer of the Day, they will be invited to the Parish Commons Classroom to hear and experience the Gospel story in a different way. Children will rejoin their families during the hymn of the day. (Children under five may bring a grown-up along!) Leaders are needed for the following Sundays: Aug.16 and 23, 8:30 and 9:45amPlease contact Ingelaurie if you can help.



Youth Faith Formation


August 23 (Sunday), CYFF Ministry Team Meeting-12:15-2:15pm in the Fireside Room.


Peace and Justice                         


An Offer from Habitat of Humanity, Tacoma/Pierce County Habitat for Humanity has been blessed with an abundance of gifts and they want to share them with their faith partners. Presently, they have Hardie plank siding and Valspar exterior paint that can given to low-income homeowners who need new siding and don't have the means to buy these items themselves. If you know of someone in our congregation who would be a good candidate for this, please contact Pastor Ruud. It is also possible that we could put together a crew of volunteers who could assist with the project.


Thank you to all who donated backpacks and school supplies for mothers at Mission Creek Correction Center for Women in Belfair to give to their kids at their "Back to School" event last Saturday.  St. Mark's provided 100 well-supplied backpacks, resulting in very happy mothers, kids and caregivers.  For many kids this is the first time they have ever had all new stuff when they start school.  What a boost for their self-esteem!

Aug 10-14, Family Housing Network Back to School Event. Catholic Community Services is working to get 100 kids ready for school. Can you help them with donations of school supplies? High School (backpacks, calculators, protractors, 3-ring binders, 2-pocket folders, Sharpies, graph paper, college ruled spiral notebooks, pencil pouches, ball point pens in red/blue/black). Middle/Elementary (water colors, colored pencils, No 2 pencils, ziplock bags in gallon and sandwich size, Kleenex, pencil boxes, wide ruled paper, backpacks, 2 pocket folders, rulers, book covers and notebook dividers.) Bring all donations to The Phoenix Housing Day Center, 5050 South Tacoma Way.



Connect and Care TimeBank                        

Sept 16, The next Connect and Care TimeBank training is scheduled for Wednesday, September 16 from 5:30 to 7:00 in the Youth Room.  St. Marks will resume Wednesday night dinner and services, too.  You can grab dinner and come down to the Youth Room for training before the evening service.

We have over 20 members signed up with lots of fun offers and requests.  Check out the TimeBank Poster in the Narthex to see some examples.  A new sign up sheet will be available.  I will be sending out individual email invitations for those of you who had expressed interest earlier but were unable to attend the first training in June.

Sponsored by the Congregational Care Committee, the CCTB is a great way to give and receive help, learn new skills and connect in a personal way with members of our congregation.  If you have questions, please feel free to contact Patty Reinkensmeyer 857-7977 of Jan Walters 703-895-5805. 


St. Mark's Preschool   


St. Mark's Preschool enrollment for 2015-2016 is now open. For more information, visit our website ( or call 253-752-4929.



August 9, Paint the Preschool. If you'd like to help us put up fresh paint in the preschool and children's wing, please join us on Sunday, August 9th at 12:30. We will be receiving some painting tips from member Bill Krabler and we'll get started on prep work. Please contact Anne Zimmerman with questions (253) 691-9637 or email


In Other News...

Creator Lutheran Church in Bonney Lake is looking to hire a Church Administrator (25-30 hours).  This position will provide business and operational support to church members, council and professional staff.  It will manage church finance, property, personnel procedures.  A bachelor's degree in business or related field or equivalent experience preferred.  If you are interested in more information there are copies of the full job description available in office at St. Marks or by contacting Pastor Heidi Calhoun at
Member Notes

August 5 at 7pm, Tim Sherry will be reading from his book
at The Chapel on Echo Bay ( 400 Sixth Avenue,  Fox Island, WA 98333)
Food, a Q and A,  and book sales and signing afterwards. Information about the chapel and directions can be found at


Thrivent Night at the Rainiers, August 7, 2015, One of our greatest supporters, James Gallegos, died tragically last winter. To honor his memory, the West Pierce County Chapter Board unanimously voted to use the proceeds from this year's Thrivent night at the Rainiers to be a contribution to the Jayce Gallegos College Fund. 

What: Tacoma Rainier's Baseball. Beverages and food are included.

When: Friday, August 7, 2015 Cost: $15 minimum donation per ticket
How to get Tickets: Call Cheryl Mays Comen at Trinity Lutheran Church (253-537-0201) for details.


Former member Beatrice Boe passed away on July 19th. Services were held in Rio Rancho, NM.  




Thank You for Benevolences!

Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary
Thank you so much for your recent gift to Hallie Parkins. At the beginning of August, over 50 professors from the ELCA colleges and seminaries will gather on the campus of PLTS for a "Convocations of Teaching Theologians" They will be discussing the current experiences of immigrant churches in the United States, while at the same time enjoying the weather and sites of the Bay Area.  We are proud to host this important group, and hope to give them a good impression and idea of what are are about in Berkeley.  In Christ, Rev. Brian Stein-Webber

Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary
Thank you for your generous gift to PLTS.  Your gift is really vital to the life of our seminary.  Thank you for making this in the first month of our new fiscal year. For those of us who work as gift officers, we often find ourselves rushing at the end of every year to meet our fundraising goals which are essential for carrying out our mission of cultivating leaders for our church.  Because of you, making this gift when you did, we can kick off this new fiscal year in a bold, and less frazzled way.   To the glory of God, Rev. Brian Stein-Webber

Rescue Mission
Dear St. Mark's Lutheran Church,  Thank you for your gift.  Your gift offers relief to those facing homeless and addiction in Pierce County during this unusually hot summer.  Your support provides hope to men, women and families with nowhere else to turn.  This hope starts with the individual, and extends to their  relationships- with family, friends, and our community at large.  Through your gift, you offer God's help, hope and healing to the most impoverished members of our community.  Thank you for caring and for taking action.  Your gift will have a lasting impact. Sincerely, Mike Johnson

Tacoma Community House
Thank you for taking the opportunity to make a measurable difference in the future of our community.  Your generous financial support is affording us the opportunity to serve nearly 3,000 immigrants, refugees and low-income native-born individuals from over eighty different countries of origin.  For man, the immigrant experience brings challenges beyond learning a new language. At Tacoma Community House, our hope and plan is to support each of them throughout their journey.  With so much need, the demand for our services has never been greater and prospects for our future need ever more promising.  Our vision for the future includes expanding services to lead more people toward successful lives and in more areas of the country.  The investment you are making in Tacoma Community House are, truly, investments in our community.  Thank you, again, for your generous support and commitment.  Sincerely, Liz B. Dunbar



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