The Bridge
The weekly newsletter of St. Mark's Lutheran Church by The Narrows                  
    October  21 , 2015 
Grace Notes: 
Home is Where God Is
For the last several weeks I have spent time with my mother as she has packed up her home of 40 years to move to a smaller place in community with others. Along with my siblings, at our mother's request, we sorted through boxes of various possessions-things that, in and of themselves may not be significant but, all together, compose a life. I came across a book I hadn't noticed Mom's shelves since childhood, a book my parents read to us after dinner each night when we were young. It is called, "Home is Where God Is". It was the story of a family. Each chapter contained a scene from family life and a little nugget of wisdom about faith in daily life. There was no high drama, just ordinary challenges like telling the truth, learning to forgive, making tough decisions, sibling rivalry, respecting your parents. . . the everyday stuff of life. This little book would never make it over any post-modern standard for diversity or inclusivity, and it certainly will never win a prize for literature. But it was part of my faith formation. It gave me eyes to see God in the very ordinary relationships and rhythms of home. It taught me that faith in God had something to do with how I treated people, even those people closest to me. And I learned that, for me, faith and home were inextricably bound.
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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.
Wednesday Church Night Tonight
5:00pm Little Angels 
5:15pm Dinner is served 
Beef Stew (Vegetarian Option), Coleslaw, Rolls, and Cake   Sug. donation $5/person
5:30pm Joyful Noise 
6:00pm Jubilation Choir  
6:00pm Praise Team Rehearsal
6:15pm Holy Moly! 
6:15pm Faith Journey
6:15pm No Midweek Renewal this week
7:30pm Prayer Service

Childcare is provided from 5-8pm for children up to 5 years old while parents attend meetings, Bible study, and worship.

St. Mark's Reformation Festival

Join us for a Reformation Festival Next Sunday, October 25th at 2pm
in our sanctuary. Come hear great music from our own St. Mark's singers and instrumentalists and learn more about the history of the Reformation movement that changed the lives of people across the globe. The program featuring music, readings, and art will be followed by a reception in the Parish Commons. This is a great way to celebrate our Lutheran heritage and continue in the spirit of the Reformation in our own time and place!

Stewardship 102: Entering the 4th Quarter

Seahawks fans this year are learning about the importance of the 4th quarter!  For whatever reason, letdowns in the final stages of a game can present challenges for the future.   The same is true for churches.   4th quarter giving is historically high, and churches (like us) relay on the 4th quarter for financial stability in the year that ends and the new year about to begin. 

As you will read in the mailing being sent from St. Mark's this week, our 3rd quarter financial report is a very good one.  As you will see in the chart below, we are off to a slower start in October.  At the request of the Church Council, we will be sharing a monthly snapshot of giving in addition to the quarterly review of giving and spending to help everyone understand how we are doing in our plans to fund our mission. 

The Stewardship Ministry Team is with Pete Carroll when it comes to the 4th quarter: "Let's finish strong."

Memorial Service for Frank Hruza

You are invited to join is this  Saturday, October 24 at 2:00pm  for a Memorial Service for Frank Hruza. Frank was a member of St. Mark's for more than forty years and he is remembered by many as a role model for Christian service and hospitality.

Next Sunday (Nov. 1)   is All Saints  Sunday .

You are invited to bring a framed picture of a loved one that you are remembering that day. We will place all of these pictures in our worship space as a reminder of the communion of saints that remains united by the love of God in Jesus Christ.
Family Housing Network

Family Housing Network will be at St. Mark's from October 17th-23rd.   Thanks to all who have volunteered. 

Christmas Wreaths

The Boy Scouts will begin selling Christmas wreaths this week at church.  They are only selling for 2 weeks this year so be sure to not miss out on purchasing these beautiful wreaths.  Look for their table on Oct 25 and Nov 1 and help support Boy Scout Troup 216. The wreaths will be delivered to church the Sunday after Thanksgiving, Nov 25th. 

Do You Like to Bake Bread?

Our communion bread now is homemade, using a simple recipe that is popular in many of our sister congregations.  We are looking for St. Mark's bakes who would like to take this recipe and bake the bread that we will use at communion in the weeks and months ahead.  The bread can be brought to church ahead of time and stored in our freezer or provided on the Friday before it is served at communion.  There is a sign-up sheet at the Welcome Center for all those who would like to participate in this new ministry at St. Mark's. 

Adult Faith Formation

9:45am, Adult Forum, Parish Commons Classroom
October 25th,  The Reformation in Germany--Ingelaurie Lisher will share stories from her recent trip to Germany, particularly the places that are gearing up for the 500th anniversary of the posting of Luther's 95 theses (2017). 
11:00am, Adult Class, Parish Commons Classroom
October 25th, The Letters to the  Hebrews
will be the epistle text in worship throughout the Fall. Hosted by Traci Drake. 

Preschool Parent Bible Study, Wednesdays, 9:15am,  October 7th-November 11th, Parish Commons
Parents of young ones come together for a six week study of Jesus' parables (your child does not have to attend St. Mark's Preschool for you to attend--all are welcome!) Childcare is provided in the nursery.  

Fully Alive Bible Study,  Tuesdays, 5:15pm,  Fireside Room.
This fall we will be discussing the book of Esther--about how God used her characteristics and traits to secure her peoples' survival. All are welcome! Questions? Contact Sherry Maiura (253) 549-4222.

Ladies' Bible Study, Wednesdays, 9:30am, Parish Commons Classroom. 
We bring a variety of maturity and experience in our faith journeys to this Bible Study, which enriches us all! Join us as we finish our study of Spiritual Fruits and then begin a new one yet to be chose. If you have questions, please contact Linda Durant at (253) 363-8202 or

Text Study Luncheon, Wednesdays, Noon, Parish Commons
Gather for lunch and for  conversation and study around the text that will be heard in worship the following Sunday.  Conversation will be guided by the pastor who will be preaching, and by the insights and questions of the group.   

Midweek Renewal, Wednesday, 6:15pm, Fireside Room
No Midweek Renewal This Week, please join us again next week.

First Friday Circle, Fireside Room, 10-11:15am, beginning Nov. 6
A new women's group is being formed especially for younger women.  The group will meet the first Friday of each month for coffee, pastry and conversation around issues in our lives, looking at how faith might affects those issues.  The online magazine CafĂ© will be used as our initial resource. You can check out the magazine at .  For further information, contact Celesta Smith at  or Diana Busch at .       
Children and Youth Faith Formation

T his week's Spark Notes is Bartimaeus Sees Mark  
Spark Notes are fun activity sheets printable each week to 
supplement Sunday School lessons.

Christmas Children's Musical! It is that exciting time of year again when we will begin to gear up for our annual Christmas Children's Musical here at St. Marks. Amy Wigstrom will be our director, and we are so lucky to have her! We will be casting at the beginning of Sunday School for the next two weeks, October 18th and 25th. Please see the attached form, and bring it with you if you on Sunday to give to Amy in Sunday School. Talk to your children about the show, and let them know it is going to be a lot of fun.

It's that time of year to get your 2016 Entertainment book.  Order yours today through the church office for only $25.00. Books will arrive mid-October.
Coming up...

3rd year Confirmation info: 9th graders will meet Thursday Evenings until October 22 from 5:30-6:30pm with Pastors Ruud and Shjerven in the Parish Commons Classroom. Youth Faith Companions will also meet with the group.
Sunday Mornings 9:45-10:45am- Oct. 25th Note locations!
  • 3 years old to 4th grade-Children's Faith Center (lower level by elevator)
  • 5/6th grade-Teal Room(lower youth wing)
  • 7/8th grade-attend worship as a class
  • 9-12th grade-Adult Forum in Parish Commons Classroom
JR ALYVE Youth Group (6-8th grades) meets Nov. 5 and 19(1st and 3rd Thurs.) from 5:30-6:30pm for fun and games in the Parish Commons.  
Youth Choir (6-12th grades) meets from 6:30-7:30pm each week in the Narthex with Cooper.   
Rise Up Together Tour! Featuring Agape and Rachel Kurtz. For 9-12th graders Sunday November 15th 1-7pm at Trinity Lutheran College in Everett. Cost: $10.00 per person (includes concert and dinner on the way home). Sign up by Nov. 1 if you plan on attending.
9-12th grade Pie Making Event! Wednesday, November 25th 12-2pm at the church. Bring a 9x9 baking dish and a pie pan with you and $5.00 to help cover supplies. Sign up on the Youth Board by Nov. 22nd if you plan on attending.

Lutheran College Fair and Financial Seminar

Sunday, November 8th at Holy Spirit Lutheran Church from 5:30pm to 8:30pm. 
Make the most of your time and learn why the Lutheran college experience is unlike any other. During the fair, you'll talk with representatives of our colleges about:
* The value of a liberal arts education.
* Academic programs at our colleges and universities.
* Available scholarships and financial aid, and the number of students who receive financial support.
* The countless extracurricular activities taking place on any given day.
The ways in which the faculty and staff help students develop their faith and find their sense of purpose.
Looking for a little homework? Can't make it to the college fair? Visit our website for the information you need to launch your college search and a complete calendar of events.

DeLong Weekend Backpacks
Please check the table in the Narthex each week to see how you can help with our DeLong Backpack program. We are trying to fill 60 backpacks each week and can use more donations. Thank you for helping feed those in need.

Women's of St. Mark's Holiday Bazaar

Holiday Bazaar Sign-ups beginning Sunday, October 11

Look for our display and sign-up to help and/or donate handmade items,collectables, bakery, and/or used books.  Handmade items:  Price your items if you like.  We have price  tags available at our display table.  Bakery:  All bakery items accepted, cookies, breaks, cakes, pies etc.  Plastic clam shells for bakery available at our display table.  Collectables:  Bring in dishes, figurines, linens, framed art, Christmas decor, a nd antiques of all kinds.  Let us know if you have a price in mind.  Used Books:  All titles, adult and children.  Hardback and paperback.

Sign-up for lefse making.
Wednesday, November 4 - 6PM : preparing the potatoes.
Thursday, November 5 - 9AM: Lefse making, rolling, baking, and packaging. We will be boiling 100 pounds of potatoes and need your help.  There is a need for many hands to cool and package the lefse, so sign-up even though you do not make lefse.  Questions: Carol Paulson (252) 564-6838

Bazaar Set-iup: Friday, November 6 - 9AM
Please have all donations at the Church.  Bakery may come in on Friday
or Saturday AM.  We will be busy setting up displays  Lunch will be served.

Saturday: BAZAAR DAY!
Sign-up to help in the kitchen or Parish Commons.  Bazaar opens
at 9AM.  Plan to come and shop early for the best selection.

Bazaar Cafe:
We begin the day with Swedish pancakes with lingonberries at 9 AM.  Lunch menu includes, yellow pea soup, turkey noodle soup, bratwurst, and homemade pie. (we need homemade pies)  We are adding homemade Swedish meatballs to our menu.  Help in the kitchen or come and enjoy our delicious homemade food.

We will display any remaining items on Sunday morning, November 8. At 12 noon we will need help packing away after another successful Bazaar!

Remember: One half of our profits go out-of-house.
                    In house profits always support our quilters and
                    our Church kitchen.

A meeting will be held two weeks after the Bazaar,  Wednesday, November 18 - 6PM   Church Library,  to distribute funds.

Women of St. Mark's

Craft Night - Friday, October 30 - 6:00 PM

This will be our last craft night for the year.  We will be competing bazaar
projects as well as pricing Bazaar items.  Join us for lively conversation
and light refreshments.

Interfaith Bible Study

You're invited to join an Interfaith Bible Study with members of Temple Beth El, Bethany Presbyterian Church, St. Luke's Episcopal Church, and our own St. Mark's Lutheran Church by The Narrows. The topic of our study this Fall is: "Finding God in the Other."  We'll explore Bible stories that teach us to see God in those who are different from us. From Hagar the Egyptian slave to Cyrus the Persian conquerer, we'll explore how God works in and through those whom God chooses, whether we like it or not. Please mark these dates on your calendar and plan to join us for this engaging series that will be led by the clergy of each congregation:
Nov. 5, 7:00pm at Temple Beth El, led by Pastor Sarah Wiles
Dec. 3, 7:00pm at St. Luke's Episcopal Church, led by Pastor Jan Ruud

To receive the Bible readings and discussion questions ahead of time, add your name to the sign-up sheet in the narthex or contact Pastor Ruud at:

New Art, St. Mark's Gospel

There is a new piece of art above the water fountain in the Narthex, entitled St. Mark's Gospel.  The piece of parchment, which is from goatskin, was both made by and then lettered by Qes (means priest) Hailu WoldeGiyorgis.  It records in two columns, the opening verse of the Gospel of St. Mark and is written in Ge'ez, the ecclesiastical language of Ethiopia (part of the Semitic language family).  It was written using a hollow reed, writing instrument.  The standard ink for writing is black, however, the opening lines of chapters and the names of Jesus, Mary and various saints are written in red.  The black ink is made from natural substances; today the red is purchased commercially. 

The painting of St. Mark was done by Halaqa Hailu GebreMedhin (Halaqa is an honorific term for learned person). He also painted the decorative features called harag, that surrounded the writing.  Halaqa Hailu is also from Aksum and was born in 1959.  He is a highly regarded painter of icons, mural paintings, and manuscript illuminations.  

Tutors Needed

Peace Community Center(Hilltop Scholars) is in need of computer science and calculus tutors. If you are able to help please contact Bruce Sadler at

Job Opening at Creator Lutheran

Creator Lutheran in Bonney Lake is hiring for a Office Minsitry Coordinator. 

New Opportunities for the Connect and Care TimeBank

CCTB Success Story

Mary Olsen wanted to learn to make a German paper star.  She joined 
the CONNECT AND CARE TIMEBANK and listed this as one of her requests.  It
just so happened that one morning last week Patty Reinkensmeyer was showing her German visitor, Kerstin, the CCTB website and noticed Mary's request.  Kerstin knew how to make these stars!  What fun it was to call Mary and set up this exchange for that very afternoon.  Within an hour of practice, Mary was making her own stars!

What fun it was to spend this time together.  Not only did Mary learn how to make the stars, but also a new friendship and connection was formed. My German friend was so impressed with the possibilities of the CCTB!

Putting CARE in the CCTB

With 35 TimeBank members now, we have lots of offers to share skills, talents and for caring services.  Members have begun to make exchanges with one another.

There are many members who want to offer services of caring but not yet any members who have requested these services.  

Here are some examples of caring offers:

Grocery shopping and running errands
Transportation to medical appointments
Respite and Companionship
Advanced Care Planning

Next CCTB Training is scheduled for Saturday, November 7 from 10:00-12:00 in the Youth Room.

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!