Trinity Trumpet June
In this issue: Messages from Interim Pastor Kent and Scott Peterson, Church Picnic info, June Bible Studies, Memorial gifts and Sunday Themes
Ah, summer. It's Sabbath time. Although, maybe, when you hear the word "Sabbath," it doesn't so much beckon you as remind you of an Old Testament commandment, and subsequent "parent tapes" to set aside Sundays for religious activities.
Sabbath time is more than this. Not so much obligation, as God's gift of rest and renewal. Not just rest as a quick pit stop to refuel for the next breakneck round on the speedway of life, nor leisure time as merely entertainment or recreational doings. Sabbath time is, above all, the experience of peace, of
shalom, the fullness of a ripe garden, the enjoyment of time in the present moment as complete in itself. In summer, God offers us Sabbath time for subterranean rest and rejuvenation.
Many occasions can offer Sabbath rest: time set aside for prayer, retreats, walks by the lake, in the forest or by the seashore, sunrise or sunset, quiet moments sipping tea, holding in your heart the smile of a child or the echo of a song. It is good to be intentional about such times and to honor them as essential to the experience of being fully human. Sabbath is more than taking time off from work and daily routine. In Sabbath we touch the sacred quality of life and the world we inhabit.
Wendy Wright calls it "garden time." She says, "A garden is a sacred space. But a garden is not only space, it is also time. Time of the earth's gracious, steady generativity. Time of the rhythmic changes of the seasons, the processes of flowering and decay, invisible mutation of life forms one into another. Time of resting and reaping... Time to heal wounds, forgive, regenerate. Time to anticipate a new world, a world in which justice, peace and mercy flourish...
"True garden time," she says, "is graciously empty. Unfilled, it allows us access to the most wondrous spaciousness. A space where time does not exert a vise grip on us. A space where time becomes an expansive companion, a cosmic capaciousness unbounded for our roaming."
May you, and may we all, enjoy such Sabbath time in this summer season.
Annual Church Picnic - June 3
Please join us Sunday, after worship, for the Annual Picnic. Hamburgers and hot dogs will be provided, please bring a salad/side to share. If you can help prepare, set up or clean up, please contact Keith Dadey. After the picnic, we invite anyone interested in Sunday School and youth education to stay and discuss plans for the upcoming year.
Message from Scott
On May 5, I attended the Spring Meeting of the Chicago Metropolitan Association (CMA) as a Lay Delegate from Trinity. (Roger Dart, Harriett Dart, Nan Conser, and Dick Conser are also regular participants and attended this meeting as well.) The meeting was very worthwhile. Here are some highlights:
- At worship, the sermon was a dialog between pastors of two congregations: Epiphany UCC and Ravenswood UCC. The churches are less than a mile apart in Chicago. The congregations are both about the size of Trinity. It was interesting to hear how the congregations collaborate (common youth group, confirmation, and occasional worship) while maintaining their distinctive identities as individual churches.
- The CMA welcomed three new church members: First Congregational UCC, Waukegan; St. Luke's Community, Morton Grove; and Lighthouse Church, Chicago. The Waukegan church is Roger Dart's childhood church and one with whom Roger and Harriet have maintained ties. St. Luke's was formed by the CMA around the time Trinity started. It had disaffiliated from the UCC and is now returning. The Lighthouse Church is a new church in the Uptown neighborhood of Chicago.
- During the business part of the meeting, members unanimously passed four resolutions:
A call for Congressional hearings on violence in America.
A call for the Department of Homeland Security to end the practice of separating certain immigrant children from their families.
A call for the US Justice Department to stop the growth and existence of private prisons.
A call for the State of Illinois to examine and change the practices used when setting bail for prisoners.
- The group also elected officers and committee members for the coming year. As part of that process, Jen Holtz was elected to the UCC General Synod Class of 2019-2021 representing the CMA.
Participating in this meeting was an important part of strengthening Trinity's ties to the CMA and the Illinois Conference. I hope our members will continue to participate in the future.
Change to Interim Pastor Kent's schedule for the summer
The Council has voted to modify Kent's office schedule for the summer. For the months of June, July, and August, he will be in the office at Trinity on Tuesdays and Thursdays rather than his current office hours on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays.
Kent suggested this change; we believe it makes sense for all. Kent's experience from last summer is that Trinity's pastoral needs are low during the summer months. For Kent, the change gives him more free time and an opportunity to reduce grueling commuting time between downtown Chicago and Deerfield. There is a benefit for Trinity, too: in proposing this change, Kent suggested that the church lower his monthly compensation by $1,000 to reflect his reduced hours, and the Council accepted that proposal.
We appreciate Kent's flexibility in making this change. He will, of course, still be available to meet members' needs whenever they arise. Feel free to call him (312-532-2419) at any time if you need to reach him.
We expect that Kent will resume his current schedule of 3 days in the office beginning in September.
The Firefighter's Prayer
Read in worship on May 27
in memory of Jack R. Gagne
When I am called to duty, God, wherever flames may rage,
give me strength to save a life whatever be its age.
Help me to embrace a little child before it is too late,
or save an older person from the horror of that fate.
Enable me to be alert, to hear the weakest shout,
and quickly and efficiently to put the fire out.
I want to fulfill my calling and to give the best in me,
to guard my neighbor and protect his property.
And if, according to your will, I have to lose my life,
bless with your protective hand my children and my wife.
The remainder of Kent Organ's course, "Bible 101 (Reintroducing the Book You Figure You Ought to Know (but don't)," will be on Thursday mornings, from 10:30-11:45 a.m.
Here are the remaining classes:
June 7 -
Persecution and Apocalypse - Revelation
June 14 -
Summarizing a Year with the Book - with a picnic to follow!
Even if you have not participated before, please know that you are always welcome.
We have received the following Memorial gifts
In Memory of: Given by:
Shirley Mailfeld Alda Baker
Mary Kate Houston
Lars Birger Sponberg The Holtz Family
Diane Train and Michael Zeman
Colleen and Curtis Sponberg
Carol J. Train
Lena and Conny Palmquist
Worship Themes This Month
June 3 - "Perplexed, But Not in Despair" (II Corinthians 4:1-12)
June 10 - "Like a Mustard Seed" (Mark 4:26-34)
June 17 Father's Day - "Among His Children Royalty" (I Samuel 15:34-16:13)
June 24 - "Christ's Personal Touch" (Mark 5:21-43)