Note: Each year at Charge Conference I have to write a Pastor's Report outlining what we did during the year. Each year we are given a slightly different theme, but for the most part, it is a lot like the reports we wrote at school each fall about "What I did last summer." This year we were to tell how our church was answering the call to "Make disciples of Jesus Christ" and it was fun to write. It was fun because the people at Trinity Church made it easy. I am so proud of our church, what we are doing together and the ways that we are reaching out to our neighbors. It seems as if people are constantly asking me (and making suggestions) how we can do better, and how we can reach, and help, more people. Thank you Trinity, for making my job fun.
2015 Charge Conference
By Rev. John Partridge
The call of The United Methodist Church is to “make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.” More locally, the mission of Trinity Church is “to know Jesus Christ, to grow in relationship with him, and to go share his love with others.” This year has been a reflection of our dedication to both of these guiding principles. While attendance at our traditional worship service has stabilized and shows signs of increasing once again, our non-traditional Coffee House worship service has increased its average attendance by 20 percent so that overall average attendance (as of Charge Conference) has increased from 83 to more than 90. Driving this increase is no single magic bullet but a great many things that Trinity is doing well and its widespread dedication to spreading the gospel message.
Among the many ways that Trinity is reaching out are both obvious way and some that are not so obvious.
· Trinity volunteers regularly commit their time and energy to the Perry Helping Perry food pantry (as well as other PHP projects) allowing Trinity to extend compassionate help to more than 100 neighborhood families every month.
· We continue to support and encourage youth who participate in our resident Cub Scout pack and Girl Scout troop.
· The United Methodist Women’s group are reaching out by providing education as well as financial support to help eliminate human trafficking, support our prison ministry, our youth, the food pantry, collect coats, gloves, hats and scarves for those in need, quilt and crochet blankets and prayer shawls to encourage those who are experiencing health problems or other hard times, and many, many other projects.
· Our youth group has participated in several outreach projects with Hammer and Nails and the Project COOL, contributing their time and energy to help others who are less able.
· Volunteers from Trinity have partnered with the Society of Saint Andrew’s gleaning ministry to bag over 3,000 pounds of potatoes to help provide Thanksgiving meals through four different local food pantries.
· Our Missions Team took a group of seven to The Joy Center in the Redbird Missionary Conference in Kentucky for a week-long project of construction, repair, general maintenance, food preparation, and other outreach projects, has continued to support The Joy Center after their return, and is already planning a return trip in the spring.
· The Vision Team is meeting monthly to study the information provided through Project Insight in order to better understand the needs of our neighbors and to help us to determine where and how Trinity can best reach out and provide a helping hand.
· Trinity Trustees have committed many hours of discussion and work to make our facility both useful and appealing to a wide range of age groups.
· Our children take up a “noisy collection” of loose change every month and have used that money to fund scholarships for girls in Liberia, ducks and sheep for families through World Vision, sponsor and entire classroom in Kenya, feed children through the Canton Calvary Mission, and other projects locally as well as globally.
In all these ways, and more, Trinity Church is reaching out to demonstrate the love of Jesus to our neighbors, our friends, and the world.
There is no single “magic bullet” but in all these ways Trinity Church is reaching out, sharing God’s love, and being the hands and feet of Jesus. There is no one thing that I can point to that is the cause of our growth or any one thing that is attracting new members. It is all of these things and it is the dedication of every member of our Trinity family that is getting the job done.
With God’s help, we will continue to share his love with others and to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.