If it's happening in "The County", it's probably here.
Saturday, October 10, 2020
Trinity Tidings - Oct 2020
We provide a welcoming environment to explore our faith and serve others.
As a beacon of inclusivity, we
seek to transform our community.
Trinity Tidings E-Newsletter
October 10, 2020
Please pray for:
Jesse + Carol + Carolyn
Cathy + Laurie + Donna
17-Laurie Jo L.
Cutting Edge Book Study
Our next book study selection, which will begin in November, will be Paul Knitter’s Without Buddha, I Could not be aChristian. Does that title make you apprehensive? Knitter remains a committed Christian, and is a deeper one for having gained Buddhist perspectives. If you are curious, I encourage you to check out its Amazon reviews by a variety of thoughtful readers.
Knitter’s prose is enjoyable and accessible, but also challenges. His struggles with the faith include God as transcendent “other,” the nature of evil, and original sin. If you liked Rohr’s Universal Christ, or are drawn to contemplative practice, or got excited about process theology; if you’ve participated in the Holy Envy study or Seraphim’s Wisdom School practice of interreligiosity, or are just curious about Buddhism, you may well want to read this book. For more information call Martha: 296-7842.
Stay tuned for more information about the book study schedule!
Forward Day by Day
We have received the latest edition of Forward (Nov.-Jan.) and if you would like a copy, please call Nancy at 267-5182 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. We will make sure that you get a booklet!
It is once again the time of year when the Interfaith Food Bank gathers donations of food for the underserved in Amador County for Thanksgiving. Last year, over 830 families received food from Project Thanks, and this year the demand is even higher as people have lost their jobs due to the pandemic and other factors. The Food Bank expects an increase of 20% in demand this year.
This ministry has been an important one for our congregation, and with your help we would like to continue this tradition. Your Vestry, in keeping with current policies and programs with the Diocese and the community, has determined that this is not the time to have people come to the church to receive their Thanksgiving boxes. Many parishioners have heath challenges and family obligations that preclude them from physically working on Project Thanks and interacting with the community during this time. Therefore, your Vestry has determined that our best course of action would be to accept donations of money on behalf of the Food Bank to support their program and fulfill our mission of helping others.
As a church we have committed to the equivalent of 35 Thanksgiving boxes, at $50.00 per box, totaling $1,750.00. With your generosity we can reach this goal and meet our obligation.
To do this, please send your donation to the church. Be sure to mark your donation for "Project Thanks".
We will gratefully accept any amount, and with everyone’s contribution we will meet or even exceed our goal.
Thank you for your continued support of this vital ministry.
Diocesan Convention – All are invited
All of us are invited to join with the rest of the Diocese for Convention this year. It will be a virtual convention, like so much of the rest of our lives now. However, it will be an opportunity for all of us to join together and get a sense of life beyond our own homes and home churches.
Back in January, we elected Steve, Carol, and Noreen to be our delegates to the convention and represent us for the business portion of the meeting, electing diocesan leadership, passing budgets and the like. Laurie Jo, Janet, and Mary K were elected as alternates.
But beyond the business meeting, there are other activities and opportunities. Some of these topics were on our horizons before the pandemic hit, but others have been added. Our way of interacting has obviously been affected by the pandemic. The four topics offered for everyone are: Track 1: A Perfect Storm: Mental Health in the Collision of Pandemics (offered by the
Diocesan Partners in Ministries of Health); Track 2: Becoming Beloved Community in the Diocese of Northern California (offered by the Commission for Intercultural Ministries); Track 3: Best Skills: Best Churches Nonprofit Management for Churches (offered by
Arizona State University, Lodestar Center for Philanthropy & Nonprofit Innovation); and, Track 4: Living into our Baptism: Ancient/Future Formation for Baptismal Living (offered by the Rev. Bryon Hansen).
(The Best Skills track will give a taste of a course being offered by the diocese to help congregational leaders learn church management skills. More about that diocesan course later.)
Visitors to the convention must register to attend and receive the zoom links. To register click here.
Diocese Call for Disaster Relief
In our diocese there are four main fires that have burned over 1,600,000 acres. These fires have impacted 28 churches and three parishioners have lost their homes.
In addition to prayer, if you would like to reach out a helping hand, you can donate to Bishop's Discretionary Fund: Disaster Relief. To donate, click here.
Make checks out to EDNC, put "Disaster Relief" in the memo line, and mail checks to:
The Episcopal Diocese of Northern California
350 University Avenue, Suite 280
Sacramento, CA 95825
100% of your donation will go directly to assist victims in the first stage of the disaster and later during long term recovery.
Thoughts on Stewardship
Before her ordination as a priest of the Episcopal Church, the late Terry Parsons was the stewardship officer for the larger church, helping dioceses and parishes understand the nature of stewardship. She used to refer to the autumn season of church life as “The Fall Beg-a-thon”. Terry was instrumental in helping to shift the understanding of many to get away from the fund drive approach (like we see with public tv and most charities, and to move to a more holistic approach of seeing stewardship as part of our life in God that needs to be nurtured and understood year-long.
To a good extent, we are still in the Beg-a-thon stage of stewardship, and it is time for us to make a case for the congregation to continue supporting the work of Trinity Church in Sutter Creek. However, I would like to include some elements of year-round stewardship learning, by offering some teaching in our weekly newsletter. As we enter November, we will produce a more formal letter to be mailed to everyone, along with a pledge card and return envelope. I hope that folks can return those to us by Thanksgiving, so the we can have a formal reception of the pledge cards on the First Sunday of Advent, the 29th of November. That is the First Sunday in the Christian year, as we begin Advent, preparing for the coming of the Kingdom of Christ.
As a preview of some of the thoughts I will be offering over the next several weeks, stewardship is less about the amount of resources we have, than it is about how we manage resources under our charge. Which is to say, that no matter how much or little we have at our disposal for Trinity, we have a responsibility to use it wisely for the furthering of God’s kingdom on earth, with a special eye to the vision of Trinity: As a beacon of inclusivity, we seek to transform our community. We are called to let our lights so shine before others that they may see our good works and glorify God in Heaven.
During this process, we are all invited to converse among ourselves: how do we make this happen? What does this look like at this time and this place – both this time of distancing, but also when we are able to gather? How do we make our mission statement (We provide a welcoming environment to explore our faith and serve others) a reality in welcoming, in exploring, and in serving? I hope that you will all have opportunities to pick up the phone, make a zoom call, visit safely on each other’s porches or elsewhere, and pass along some of the ideas to each other, to the vestry, and to me.
One of the key elements to breaking out of the “Beg-a-thon” mentality and moving toward a more holistic model is to explore that vision and the mission of the church as a whole, and our congregation in particular. As we look at the possibilities, we can see opportunities and make them happen, rather than seeing constraints and limiting ourselves.
This morning (Friday, October 9), the Daily Office reading from Micah included this section from the fourth chapter of the Prophet Micah:
“In days to come
the mountain of the Lord’s house
shall be established as the highest of the mountains,
and shall be raised up above the hills.
Peoples shall stream to it,
and many nations shall come and say:
‘Come, let us go up to the mountain of the Lord,
to the house of the God of Jacob;
that he may teach us his ways
and that we may walk in his paths.’
For out of Zion shall go forth instruction,
and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.
He shall judge between many peoples,
and shall arbitrate between strong nations far away;
they shall beat their swords into ploughshares,
and their spears into pruning-hooks;
nation shall not lift up sword against nation,
neither shall they learn war any more;
but they shall all sit under their own vines and under their own fig trees,
and no one shall make them afraid;
for the mouth of the Lord of hosts has spoken.
For all the peoples walk,
each in the name of its god,
but we will walk in the name of the Lord our God
for ever and ever.”
This highlights a vision of what God would like to see. It has happened from time to time and place to place in more limited ways than proclaimed by the prophet. How can we make it a reality within Amador County?
Pax et Bonum
Election Reflection Resources
If you watch commercial television, or if you check your mailboxes on a regular basis, you don’t need me to tell you that election season is upon us. As Christians, part of the Good News we proclaim is that the Kingdom of God is near. For the church and for the world, it still leaves open the often messy process of figuring out just what that means. Some want to see a theocracy, where the kingdom of God and the kingdom of the State coincide – thinking (hoping?) that God’s law become the law of the land. Others want to keep the two separate, but incorporate their understanding of religious values into the society. Other see the kingdom of God is within and adjust their lives so that it does not matter so much what the world around them looks like – if the kingdom of the world looks like the kingdom of God, so be it – if the kingdom of the world does not look like the kingdom of God – so be it – they are living within the kingdom regardless. In the midst of this, the church recognizes that we are living in both realms and that one of rights, duties, and privileges we have in the United States is that of voting for the civil government. I urge you to exercise that right, duty, and privilege.
The Episcopal News Service just put out an article describing many actions and resources which we can use as we prepare (even if you have already put your completed ballot in the mail). We can all be engaged at various levels. For the news article, which offers many suggestions, click here.
One of those resources is through Forward Movement the ones who publish Forward Day by Day as a daily meditation guide). Click herefor "The Season of Prayer" resources and offer an invitation to join with others in prayer during this season. Many churches located closer to population centers will be open for prayer election day and after. Our Trinity Cathedral in Sacramento invites us to join them on Facebook live at 7.00 pm on the 4th of November for a prayer service.
There are also some educational opportunities. ChurchNext.tv is a resource for personal and group study at a modest price. They are offering a free course for the next few weeks. Click here for the free course by Ray Suarez (formerly on the PBS News Hour and a speaker at the Episcopal Church’s General Convention). The title of the course is "Civil Conversation in Uncivil Times: Practicing Our Faith in the Public Square". It reminds us of what civil discourse can look like and how we can help enter into civil conversations with others, respecting them for who they are and their beliefs, regardless of whether we agree or not.
Pax et Bonum
Compline and Noon Day Prayer last 15 minutes or less!
Re-gathering In the Church
We are offering our second in-person worship on October 18 at 11:30 AM.
We continue to have our Zoom worship service at 9:30 AM every Sunday followed by a “Zoom Coffee Hour” which gives a chance for some catch-up and conversation.
In-person Eucharist service will be by RESERVATION on the 1st and 3rd Sunday's of each month at 11:30AM. Our worship space and the service itself will be quite different. The Eucharist will be said with no music. Below is information and links to details about protocols that must be observed to attend the service.
Protocols for In-Person Worship
Invitation to Attend Service October 18
We are now inviting parishioners for our next in-person service on October 18 at 11:30 AM. This service is offered for up to 10 attendees. All those who wish to attend October 18 must reserve a place by sending email to