Dear People of Trinity Church,

The Annual Congregational Voters Meeting will be held after the Divine Service on December 10.

Prayer Request:  Please pray for choir member Melody Fanton who fell and broke her arm.  

Angel Tree: Again, this year, the Salvation Army will be having its Angel Tree program. They will be serving 70 families and providing Christmas presents for 130 children.  Angel Tree ornaments will be  available in the narthex. All we had were taken on the very first day without any publicity!  We will get more!  Each one gives the child’s age and gender, and some gift suggestions made by the child. We are told that people usually spend $30-50 on gifts but there is no minimum, all gifts are gratefully accepted. If we run out of ornaments, please let the church office know and we will get more. There will also be Angel Trees at various businesses around town. To streamline our services, have client accountability, and prevent redundancy, Trinity and other area churches make contributions to the program administered by the Salvation Army to provide food, shelter, transportation and other services to those in need.

 Pastoral Ponderings:  This year, we will not have a Thanksgiving Eve worship service at Trinity Church.  How Americans celebrate secular and sacred holidays continues to change, with Thanksgiving being a good case in point.  Thanksgiving has always been kind of an anomaly, a religious holiday created by the government.  Modern churches often ignore several important church holidays that usually fall on weekdays, such as the Epiphany and the Ascension, but for some reason the civil holiday Thanksgiving was usually observed.  It used to be traditional to have a morning worship service on Thanksgiving Day.  But that was inconvenient because of meal preparation, and the parades and football on TV were appealing, and now some retailers are open that day, so the celebration was moved to Thanksgiving Eve, the night of the Wednesday before Thanksgiving Day.  That evening before the holiday is typically one the biggest travel nights of the year.  Modern families are often spread out geographically and "Over the river and through the woods to grandmother's house" might be a long trip.  The past three years we have averaged about a dozen people in worship on Thanksgiving Eve, and that includes the Pastor, organist, sound technician, and ushers.  People seem to prefer to be with their families at that time, and that's okay.  Lutherans do not have Days of Holy Obligation.  We do encourage everyone to attend the Sunday Divine Services regularly because we need to hear the Word and receive the sacrament.   On Thanksgiving Eve/Day we can read scripture at home, talk about what we are thankful for (that is the blessings God has shared with us), and say grace before the meal remembering to speak of our appreciation for food, family, friends, and, most of all, Christ our Savior. Have a Happy Thanksgiving.

As always, please feel free to share these electronic Updates with whomever you wish.

God bless you all.
In Christ's service,  Pastor Ash