The Bridge
The Weekly Newsletter of St. Mark's Lutheran Church by The Narrows                  
 August 7 , 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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Midweek Renewal:  Sauntering in the Great Cathedral of Earth, Sea, and Sky

Join us on Wednesday nights in August for these outdoor walks with prayers and readings from the Celtic tradition. Our first walk is tonight, August 7 at 7:00 p.m. We will meet at the picnic tables at Titlow Beach (next to Steamers) and do a 45 minute walk that involves following a trail with mild ups and downs and then walking back along the rocky beach. Next Wednesday, August 14, the walk will be at Chambers Bay Golf Course on a flat, paved surface that is well suited for wheelchairs and walkers. We will meet at 7:00 p.m. in front of the Environmental Services Building at 9850 64th Street West in University Place (free parking is available in the large parking lot adjacent to the building). 

Time to Update!

During the directory process last year, we noticed outdated and missing information in our electronic membership files. Starting Sunday, stop by the office to pick up your family packet for review, edits, and additions.

A huge thank you to each of the families who brought their extra garden produce to Produce Palooza. We have had a table full of items - peas, rhubarb, dahlias, zucchini (can you believe that?), and herbs -- lemon verbena, oregano, mint, rosemary, parsley, and sage.
And people lined up to see what was available prior to our opening!  Thanks to you too. 
We've added a new item - used coffee grounds from activities at St. Mark's. We'll provide a scoop and the grounds. You need to bring a leak-proof container to put them in. Take as much or as little as you can use in your garden. 
A reminder - please bring your own shopping bag. That helps us be  green.  We're excited to see what our members bring in this Sunday. We love surprises. 
See you Sunday between 9:30 and 11 a.m. It's free. 

Habitat for Humanity
Mark your calendars and join the team from St. Mark's that will help build a Habitat for Humanity house in the local area! The workday for our team is  Saturday, August 17. This year's Building on Faith house (built with other partners from the local faith community) is located in the Midland area. Please contact Tom Geary (, 253-549-2668) or Deborah Herforth (, 206-372-1433) for more information.

Summer Third Quarter Events

Those in the "third quarter" of life are welcome to join others age 50 - 75ish to share hope, laughter, and love through monthly active events.

Tuesday, August 20, at 5:30 p.m. Happy Hour Dinner at the Ram, 3001 Ruston Way. Optional  4:30 p.m. meet in front of the Ram to walk or bike along Ruston Way before dinner.

Care of Creation Hike

The next day hike sponsored by the Care of Creation team will be Saturday, September 7. The destination will be either Eunice Lake-Tolmie Peak in MRNP or Naches Loop Trail at Chinook Pass. We will form car pools and leave the church at  8 a.m. September is a great month to be in the high country. Join us for this time of fellowship in the wonderful Washington great outdoors.

Walking for Wellness 

Wednesdays, meet at the Art Center at TLRC at 3 p.m.

Women of St. Mark's

Fun craft night with all getting started on the "Wooly Trees" to sell at our Church Bazaar in November. So much fun! If you missed the night, you will have a chance to join us as we finish the trees. Look for an update on date and time when we get it set. We still have another craft night to stuff Floor Pillows and maybe some elves (if I get them sewn). 
Hope all our congregation crafty friends are working on their items for the Bazaar. The more we have the more we sell and help our church and community. You know who you are!  Have fun this summer!  
Barb Meyers,

Marimba Registration - Still Space Left!
Lots of you have signed up for our Marimba offerings! There is still some space left, so if your kids would like to be part of this exciting musical ministry, you can register with Linda McKeller or Katie Cootsona in the church office during regular weekday hours. 
  • August 19 - 23: Youth Marimba Camp - 9 a.m. - noon, Monday through Friday. 3rd to 12th graders will experience sessions on playing marimba, African drumming, and African dance, all working toward a performance at the end of the week to put all three together. Cost: $50 for the entire week.
Contact Cooper Sherry with questions.

Children and Youth Faith Formation

Summer story time 9:45 a.m. for children 5 years old to 3rd grade. 
Dessert and Musical Variety Show-Saturday, August 24, 6:30 p.m. at St. Mark's. Join us for an evening of music and tasty treats under the stars. Sponsored by the youth. Tickets are $10.00 per adult, $5.00 for children under 12, available now in the church office.

CYFF Ministry Team meeting-Monday, August 12, 6 p.m. at Ingelaurie's home. Main dish provided, bring a salad to share.

High School youth and parents calendaring session-Wednesday, August 14, 6-7 p.m. in the Parish Commons Classroom. Bring your ideas and your calendars.

It's not too late to sign up for the  Youth Marimba Camp -Monday, August 19-Friday, August 23. See Cooper for times and details. 

Adult Faith Formation

Wednesday Adult Faith Formation
Morning Bible Study:  The 9:15 a.m. Wednesday morning Bible study will resume in the fall.

Noon Text Study Luncheon:  Will resume in the fall.

Lydia Circle will be taking a break for the summer. We will resume in September. 

Fully Alive Bible Study will resume in the fall.

LWR Annual School Supply Drive - Orange Bags Have Arrived!

It's time for St. Mark's Annual LWR School Kit Drive and to shop for school supplies at great prices! Last year St. Mark's delivered 200 school kits to LWR, and LWR delivered over 200,000 school kits worldwide. Through September 1, you will be able to pick up and fill one or more ORANGE bags that will be delivered to one child. You may also pick up a supply list and shop for the items you choose to donate! 

This St. Mark's ministry of collecting supplies, packing and shipping kits allows children to attend school in their communities! Pencils and paper help write a positive future! Contact Catherine Terrill with questions at 253-732-3479. 

GREATEST NEED (if purchasing individual items): Spiral notebooks, ballpoint pens! 


(4) Spiral bound notebooks (8" X 10 ½") 
(1) 12" ruler (metric/inches)
(1) pencil sharpener
(1) blunt scissors
(5) pencils -unsharpened
(5) ballpoint pens (blue or black)
(1) 2 ½" pink eraser
(1) box crayons (16 or 24 crayons)

Stewardship and Care of Creation
"[A] land ethic changes the role of homo sapiens from conqueror of the land community to plain member and citizen of it. It implies respect for his fellow-members, and also respect for the community as such."
                 -Aldo Leopold, A Sand County Almanac  

"Only within the moment of time represented by the present century has one species--man--acquired significant power to alter the nature of his world."
- Rachel Carson, Silent Spring                                                                                          
Aldo Leopold and Rachel Carson were prophetic in the last century about man's threat to the planet. In the new century every eco-system on Earth is under great strain. The list of crises the planet is facing is lengthy and serious: increase and intensity of storms; drought; glacial loss; rising seas, deforestation; loss of species diversity; deterioration in air quality; pollution of fresh water  and oceans;-all of which produce negative impacts on the most vulnerable people and societies. This ecological crises, particularly the alarming progression of global climate change, is rapidly coursing into the very heart of our faith. 

It is so important in our day, therefore, to steward and care for creation as much as we steward our individual time, talents and resources. As Father Thomas Berry has said, "The Great Work now, as we move into a new millenium, is to carry out the transition from a period of human devastation of the Earth to a period when humans would be present to the planet in a mutually beneficial manner."

The word stewardship comes from the Greek word oikos, which means house. It provides the root "eco" for the words economy, ecology, and ecumenical. The word oikonomos  refers to a house manager, or city manager--a steward. This word occurs in the New Testament in Luke 12:42, wherein Jesus refers to the "faithful and wise steward whom his master has set over his household . . ." The word is also used in Titus 1:7 where it states, "As God's steward, an overseer must be above reproach- not self-absorbed, not quick-tempered, not given to drunkenness, not violent, not greedy for money. 8 Instead, he must be hospitable, a lover of good, self-controlled, upright, holy, and disciplined. . . ." Stewardship in our century requires these character traits as well as the command to protect and honor the assests and resources of God's own creation. 

In a piece entitled "Reflections on a Lutheran Theology of Creation: Foundations for a New Reformation," David Rhoads writes, 

"The ecological challenge [we face] will take much more, something radical and comprehensive. There is a lot of care-for-creation activity going on in many places in Lutheran congregations and institutions, along with reflective thinking in all major disciplines in Lutheran academic circles and advocacy in relation to environmental policies.[4] Unfortunately, it is often isolated and scattershot. We need a comprehensive and systemic approach. For the most part, popular theology is not creation-friendly; neither are curricular materials; nor worship; nor the way we care for the building and grounds of our congregations and institutions; nor our models of discipleship, stewardship, or evangelism; nor the core, the ethos, or the identity, nor our denominational and institutional missions. A paradigm shift will involve more than tinkering, more than tweaking, more than a conference here or a hymn there. We need to get it into our marrow. We need to incorporate this into our DNA. Creation care and sustainable living need to be as natural and inescapable as loving our neighbor. Our entire church-congregational life and mission, theology, ethics, worship, pastoral care, spiritual practices-need a radical overhaul if we are to care for the life of God's creation and contribute to our endurance as a species." (You can read the full article by David Rhoads here.

This is the challenge to our stewardship in the church today.  To link stewardship of God's creation to the stewardship of our giving and ministry within the institutional church so it becomes a natural and integral part of our overall mission.

Moral Voices, Moral Choices

The Peace and Justice Committee at St. Mark's invites us all to use our moral voices to advocate for justice in the following areas: food, housing, creation, and immigration. We are also invited to make moral choices in our personal behavior that impact these areas.

Prayers and Actions from Earth Ministries

Welcome to August, which has quickly become the month of advocacy for the health and safety of Tacoma! The fossil fuel industry thinks they can catch us out on summer vacation but we need to show up and tell them that people of faith don't want more dirty and dangerous fossil fuels. 

Below are some ways to get involved through praying with Water Warriors and/or showing up at public hearings. If you intend to attend either (or both!) of these hearings, please email so we can plan to meet up. If you want to testify we can go over talking points together. If you're not comfortable speaking, it's also very helpful to be present in the room, so please come anyway!

If you can share this info with your congregation and social networks we'd greatly appreciate it, especially since it's the slow summer months. We hope you are enjoying the season and getting plenty of time out in creation!

Hearing on US Oil Expansion
Wednesday, Aug 7 at 6:30
Holiday Inn Express & Suites
2102 South C St, Tacoma, WA

Hearing on PSE LNG
Tuesday, Aug 27 
2-5pm and 6:30-10pm
Rialto Theater
310 S 9th St, Tacoma, WA

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!

Have an item for The Bridge?
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!