I couldn’t be more excited.
This being the first issue of our newsletter for a New Year I think that this is a good time to look ahead at what the New Year might hold.
As I said, I couldn’t be more excited.
You might not have noticed what has been happening but I have. Over the last year, quietly, without a lot of fanfare, Trinity folks have been upping their game, stepping up, and getting things done in new, better, bigger, and more Christ-like ways than ever before. Some of these things have been small, and others have been pretty large, but all of them add up and to those of us who are keeping track, they are building a lot of excitement for what’s ahead.
Just in case you missed it, here are just a few of the things that I have been thinking about:
Facilities: Our trustees have been hard at work making our building as useful, and as beautiful, as possible. We have redecorated the children’s classroom as well as the choir room, and the changes have been transformational. This was the first year that we used our new air conditioning system in the sanctuary and fellowship hall and the results have been so positive that we are already planning to air condition a few more rooms. This change alone has already caused several other organizations to ask about using our space. Our parking lots are beautiful and attractive. All of our flower beds, shrubbery, and other areas around the church were updated and look fantastic. A new handicap accessible restroom has been added on the main floor. Many other improvements have been made around the church to lighting, plumbing, and many other areas that help everyone use our building in new and better ways.
Programs: Trinity Church, her people, and her partners are doing more than ever to reach out to those in need and to share the Good News of Jesus Christ. Perry Helping Perry is now feeding more than 65 families on an average month and wee over 100 families at Christmastime (December was 115, I think) and has also brought the weekend Snack Pack program (which feeds hungry children every weekend) into our building. PHP has also expanded to provide shampoo, deodorant and other health and beauty needs. Seven of us went on a mission trip to The Joy Center in Kentucky and, while we had a great time, were able to make a real difference in the lives of many people as well as provide encouragement to the staff there. Our youth have also participated in several outreach programs (such as Project COOL and Hammers and Nails) and have made a significant impact in our community. The Fellowship of Christian Athletes group has restarted and redefined themselves and some weeks we have seen larger groups of young people than ever before. Our partnership with the Society of Saint Andrew allowed us to provide potatoes to four area food pantries and hundreds of hungry people. That certainly isn’t everything but it’s just a sample.
People: As always, the people at Trinity have consistently been wonderful, welcoming, and generous. I have rarely asked a question and received “No” for an answer. This past year we have seen consistent increases in attendance at the Coffee House worship service and, together, we added seven new members and welcomed a host of new and returning visitors. I can’t tell you how proud I am of all of you when visitors tell me how welcome you made them feel. At almost every meeting we talk about how we can help more people, reach more people, and do more for our community. This is a driving passion for the people at Trinity Church. The people here, you, genuinely care for others and they notice.
These are some of the reasons that I think 2016 will be a year of boldness. Together we are already doing big, little, and ordinary things, every single day that are helping people, building our community, and growing faith. I am certain that the New Year will bring even more opportunities for us to be the hands and feet of Jesus.
Let us be unafraid.
Let us be bold.