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Trinity Tidings

The E Newsletter of Trinity Episcopal Church, Sutter Creek

August 2013

In This Issue
Rector's Report
Senior Warden's Report
Save the Date!
The Charter for Compassion
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   Karen Sept Rector's Report 


Since our last newsletter, we said good-bye to our parish nurse, threw a great choir party, engaged in a successful food drive, began our Charter for Compassion initiative, and had a combined meeting of the vestry and missio:engage team (with great food of course).  Many folks went on vacation during the month of July while others battled the searing heat of Amador County.  God continues to do wonderful things among us and we are looking for ways to partner with what God is already doing in our neighborhoods.


On July 1 & 2nd, the missio:engage team organized the food drive, raised $744, and collected over 2600 pounds of food for the Interfaith Foodbank.  Many thanks to those of you who volunteered on the two hottest days of the year.  Local families will now have more food on their tables thanks to your generous offer of time, talent, and treasure.

 This month, leaders of the Amador community were invited to attend a meeting at Trinity to advise us on how to best launch the Charter for Compassion in our county.  Before going public, we would like our church to make a public stand on supporting this initiative as an example of our commitment to the principle of compassion.  Compassion is our mandate from Jesus: Love God, love your neighbor.  The Charter fits in with our vision statement "to spread the good news of Jesus Christ with each other and the world."  Also, it is one of the ways that Trinity can become "a more active and visible force in the community."  With the inclusion of the $2500 from the diocese grant, we now have $13,655 to reach out into the community with goals like spreading the Charter for Compassion thanks to you and the generosity of our anonymous 2:1 donor.


The bishop of our diocese has given his priests permission (according to the laws of California) to perform marriages on same-sex couples.  Like any couple wishing to get married, they must be in a committed relationship, have some pre-marital counseling, and sign the Declaration of Intent for a "life-long union."


Our August book study, The Proof of Heaven (by Eben Alexander) will be held in Jane's Hall from 6:15-7:45pm.  The book study will be divided up as follows:  August 1(pages 1-73): General Overview, Out of body experiences.  August 8 (pages 74-114):  Experiencing the Mystery of the Divine and other theological concerns.  August 15 (pages 115-188): Conclusions, Theories, Life of this Side of the Divide. 


Finally, in preparation of becoming a radically hospitable church and reaching out into our neighborhoods, the missio:engage initiative encourages all of us to learn a few of our neighbors' names.  Walk or drive around your neighborhood and simply notice what is happening there.  Are there cars or bicycles in the driveways?  Are people home during the day?  Do you live among mostly retired folks or working folks?  Who are the people who live next door to you?  When we begin to learn who are neighbors are, it becomes easier to be neighborly. 


Peace and Blessings,

Pastor Karen+ 


  Events at Trinity


Missio:Engage Food Drive
Missio:Engage Food Drive


Choir Party
Farewell to Susan


Vestry - Missio:Engage


Vestry - Missio:Engage



Senior Warden's Report



Board Briefs - Vestry Meeting, July 25, 2013 ................


Vestry members and the Missio-Engage Team met together at John and Noreen Lafferty's home for dinner and the July Vestry meeting.  The main focus of the social event and the meeting was discussion between Vestry members and the Missio-Engage team on ways they can support each other and the goals of the Missio-Engage team.


Pastor Karen introduced a Bible Study on Hospitality and then split the attendees into three groups.  Each group discussed a time they were welcomed as a stranger and given hospitality.  Following a bible reading from Genesis, the group discussed how we could show hospitality, what it means to welcome the stranger as part of living as God's people,  and what God might be saying to us as leaders of Trinity.


Following the special bible study, the regular Vestry meeting was held.


The minutes of the June 27, 2013 Vestry Meeting were approved.


Missio Engage Team Report and discussion with Vestry members.

Missio-Engage Team members reported on their accomplishments to date, their current activities, Webinar meetings with other Missio-Engage Teams, challenges, and ways that Vestry could support their efforts.  Both groups discussed strengthening communication and support between the groups, including attendance at meetings and mutual prayer for group members and their goals.


Rector's Report:

Pastor Karen provided an update on the Bishop's position and church decisions on same sex marriages.  Information on this subject is also available on the Diocesan web site. 


Pastor Karen also reported on the July 25th meeting with community members to request input on the implementation of the Charter for Compassion in Amador County.  Pastor Karen and the Vestry will also plan discussions on the Charter for Compassion for the Trinity congregation.


Old Business:  Gerry Moore provided an update on the installation of the new sound system components.  John Lafferty provided an update on facility improvements including the work on Jane's Hall and plans for painting sections of the church windows and other projects.  Carol Holt reported that the goal for grant funding was reached and thanks to funds from the donor and the congregation, total funds available for grant projects now exceeds $13,000.


Carol distributed the June Financial Report and highlighted financial activities.


The meeting adjourned with special thanks and appreciation given to the Missio-Engage team for their presence at the dinner and meeting and for all their work the last 10 months in implementing this program at Trinity Church and in the Amador Community.



Sarah Hart

Senior Warden




Save the Date!


We have many opportunities for fellowship and personal growth at Trinity.  Here is a preliminary list to help you plan your calendar for the remainder of the year.  Not all future events are listed as some are still being planned.  But this is what we do know at this time:


August 1, 8, 15 @ 6:15-7:45 pm:  Book study led by rector: Proof of Heaven by Dr. Eben Alexander

Sept. 21 @ 5:00pm:  Trinity Dinner for all.  Food, Fun, and Fellowship.

Oct. 5th 12-2pm:  Bible challenge potluck and teaching.  Bring a dish to share.

Oct. 26th 9-noon:  A Day of Hope: Insights and healing from depression.  A forum @ Trinity church.

Nov. 7th-9th:  Diocesan Convention

Nov. 23rd @ 9-noon:  Pre-Advent Retreat



August Birthdays

The following members of our church family are celebrating birthdays in July! 


5th Joy Blair

6th Rolly Matson

7th Susan Wahlstrom

10th Rosalee Prior-Escamilla

10th Teddy West

14th Noreen Lafferty

17th Alexis Lewis



If you are celebrating a birthday in August, but you don't see your name listed here, please write down your name and birthday or contact our Parish Office Manager, Tony Holt

The Charter for Compassion


THE CHARTER FOR COMPASSION:  The Charter for Compassion is a cooperative effort to restore not only compassionate thinking but, more importantly, compassionate action to the center of religious, moral and political life. Compassion is the principled determination to put ourselves in the shoes of the other, and lies at the heart of all religious and ethical systems. One of the most urgent tasks of our generation is to build a global community where men and women of all races, nations and ideologies can live together in peace. In our globalized world, everybody has become our neighbor, and the Golden Rule has become an urgent necessity.


History:  The Charter for Compassion is the result of Karen Armstrong's 2008 TED Prize wish (Technology, Entertainment, Design) and made possible by the generous support of the Fetzer Institute.  It was unveiled to the world on November 12, 2009. The Charter, crafted by people all over the world and drafted by a multi-faith, multi-national council of thinkers and leaders, seeks to change the conversation so that compassion becomes a key word in public and private discourse, making it clear that any ideology that breeds hatred or contempt ~ be it religious or secular ~ has failed the test of our time. It is not simply a statement of principle; it is above all a summons to creative, practical and sustained action to meet the political, moral, religious, social and cultural problems of our time.


Trinity Church's Involvement with the Charter for Compassion:  During the 2012 strategic planning process, the majority of people wanted our church to become a more active and visible force in the Amador community.  How do we spread the good news in a community that is so diverse theologically and politically?  One of the suggestions was to get behind the Charter for Compassion to encourage civil discourse, tolerance, and compassion within the many organizations, political groups, churches, schools, businesses, and individuals.  A $2500 grant was awarded to our church by the diocese to launch this initiative.  For more information on the Charter, go to:


The Wording of the Charter for Compassion:


The principle of compassion lies at the heart of all religious, ethical and spiritual traditions, calling us always to treat all others as we wish to be treated ourselves. Compassion impels us to work tirelessly to alleviate the suffering of our fellow creatures, to dethrone ourselves from the center of our world and put another there, and to honor the inviolable sanctity of every single human being, treating everybody, without exception, with absolute justice, equity and respect.


It is also necessary in both public and private life to refrain consistently and empathically from inflicting pain. To act or speak violently out of spite, chauvinism, or self-interest, to impoverish, exploit or deny basic rights to anybody, and to incite hatred by denigrating others-even our enemies-is a denial of our common humanity. We acknowledge that we have failed to live compassionately and that some have even increased the sum of human misery in the name of religion.


We therefore call upon all men and women ~ to restore compassion to the center of morality and religion ~ to return to the ancient principle that any interpretation of scripture that breeds violence, hatred or disdain is illegitimate ~ to ensure that youth are given accurate and respectful information about other traditions, religions and cultures ~ to encourage a positive appreciation of cultural and religious diversity ~ to cultivate an informed empathy with the suffering of all human beings-even those regarded as enemies.


We urgently need to make compassion a clear, luminous and dynamic force in our polarized world. Rooted in a principled determination to transcend selfishness, compassion can break down political, dogmatic, ideological and religious boundaries. Born of our deep interdependence, compassion is essential to human relationships and to a fulfilled humanity. It is the path to enlightenment, and indispensable to the creation of a just economy and a peaceful global community.




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If you have an article of interest to the congregation that you would like included in the newsletter, please email it to the office, by the 20th of the month. It will be included in the next month's newsletter.