This month the Trinity Book Group is reading Life of the Beloved: Spiritual Living in a Secular World by Henri J.M. Nouwen. The discussion will take place on Friday, April 22 at 7pm, hosted and facilitated by Prudence Cooney. The Christian Formation Commission hopes you will enjoy this opportunity to socialize as well as further explore your faith journey. To sign up, email firstname.lastname@example.org or speak with Sophfronia Gregory or Nancy Cole. Copies of the book will be made available at the Booth Library on Main Street.
Publisher's Description: Initially written for a Jewish friend, Life of the Beloved has become Henri Nouwen’s greatest legacy to Christians around the world. This sincere testimony of the power and invitation of Christ is indeed a great guide to a truly uplifting spiritual life in today’s world.
When Nouwen was asked by a secular Jewish friend to explain his faith in simple language, he responded with his greatest legacy, Life of the Beloved, which shows that all people, believers and nonbelievers, are beloved by God unconditionally.
Trinity’s Christian Formation Commission completed its five-session Lenten series, "Growing a Rule of Life,” this week with participants putting the final touches on their plans to create new spiritual disciplines. The program, developed by the Society of Saint John the Evangelist (SSJE) and the Center for the Ministry of Teaching at the Virginia Theological Seminary, used workbook exercises, daily videos from the SSJE monks, and gardening metaphors to help participants think through what would support their personal growth and connection to God. They were encouraged to examine their relationship to God, self, others, and nature.
According to an article on the website “Faith & Leadership,” which recently highlighted the success of the monks’ social media efforts, the program had 7,000 subscribers to the daily video feed. (You can read the entire article here.) The Christian Formation Commission chose the series because of the monks’ ability to engage so many people. “This year we wanted to focus on Lent as a communal experience,” said commission chair Sophfronia Gregory. “We thought this was a great opportunity for Trinity to observe Lent within this larger experience made possible by the brothers of SSJE.”
The communal aspect was definitely a part of the classroom dynamic. “I loved the discussions we had as a group during the Lenten series,” said participant Ben Toby. “Just being able to listen thoughtfully to each other, where we are on our spiritual journey and how we can improve our connection to God through wellness of mind, body, and relationships to each other and to God’s creation. Somehow this series – and the wonderful discussion leaders! – really led to meaningful conversations that I enjoyed and am very thankful for. I hope we can do many more like it!”
This year students from two of the youth church school classes (J2A and YAC) joined the program as well and benefited from sharing the learning with adults. “The Lenten series helped me reflect on the spiritual practices that I do and the relationships I have with the many facets of my life, and has helped me see which places I need to strengthen and what I can to do make that happen,” said J2A student Rachel Tramposch.
In the last class one of the videos the class viewed focused on the special importance of a Rule of Life when life gets tough. “At times it’s actually very easy to live the life of faith,” said Brother Geoffrey Tristram. “Prayer comes to us naturally, we feel drawn to God, and we look at God’s creation and our hearts are filled with joy. But there are other times in our life when life becomes more barren, more bare. Perhaps we have experienced a bereavement or a change in our plans or our hopes. In those times, it’s much more difficult to embrace life. But actually, in my own experience, it is exactly during those times when having a Rule of Life in place becomes so important. It is then that we really need to turn to those rhythms, those disciplines which we have grown and established, because they will uphold us and they will support us and strengthen us when we feel that life is very, very difficult.”
Participant Maureen Costello observed, “For me the most important thing is to keep my Rule of Life simple so that I will do the several practices I have committed to. Once I have been consistently faithful to those few practices I will gradually add to the garden. The Lenten series was helpful in giving me the jumpstart I needed.”
If you missed the program and would like to create your own Rule of Life, the videos and downloadable workbook are available at http://ssje.org/ssje/growrule/.
This month the Trinity Book Group is reading The Prodigal God: Recovering the Heart of the Christian Faith by Timothy Keller. The discussion will take place on Friday, March 18 at 7pm, hosted and facilitated by Dan and Lindie Bacon. The Christian Formation Commission hopes you will enjoy this opportunity to socialize as well as further explore your faith journey. To sign up, email email@example.com or speak with Sophfronia Gregory or Nancy Cole. Copies of the book will be made available at the Booth Library on Main Street.
Publisher's Description: Newsweek called renowned minister Timothy Keller "a C. S. Lewis for the twenty-first century" in a feature on his first book, The Reason for God. In that book, he offered a rational explanation of why we should believe in God. Now, in The Prodigal God, he uses one of the best-known Christian parables to reveal an unexpected message of hope and salvation.
Taking his trademark intellectual approach to understanding Christianity, Keller uncovers the essential message of Jesus, locked inside his most familiar parable. Within that parable Jesus reveals God's prodigal grace toward both the irreligious and the moralistic. This book will challenge both the devout and skeptics to see Christianity in a whole new way.
Streams of Living Water Johnson Room
April 10th and April 17th
Led by Rick Chamiec-Case and Dan Bacon
In this session we will explore the dimensions of faith and practice that define Christian tradition based on Richard Foster’s award-winning book, Streams of Living Water. Foster identifies six dimensions of faith and practice at the core of the Christian tradition: contemplative, holiness, charismatic, social justice, evangelical, and incarnational. Through the centuries each of these dimensions has contributed significantly to the maturing and growth of the Church but all flow out of Jesus' ministry — his prayer and intimacy, purity of heart, life in the Spirit, advocacy of justice and shalom, proclamation of the evangel, and sacrament of the present moment. We will look at examples from each dimension and then discuss which we individually most identify with. We will also glean ways we can appreciate and learn from other traditions as well.
Tour of Trinity Meet in the Sanctuary
Led by Larry Coleman
You never know what Larry has up his sleeve! A tour of the church, a behind the scenes look, or a history lesson. Always informative, always enlightening, join Larry in the Sanctuary for this session and learn more about our Trinity buildings and hidden symbolism featured within our walls.
Walk the Labyrinth Trinity Memorial Garden
Led by Sophfronia Gregory
Labyrinths have been around since the year 3600 B.C. and have been found on most continents and in many different cultures, but to some they may seem as mystical as the Great Pyramids. Unlike a maze, which is designed to make you lose your way, a labyrinth has one entrance and one path leading you to the center. Designed to help you find your way, a labyrinth is a meditative tool that can be used in many ways. Join us at Trinity’s own outdoor labyrinth as we take the first steps together and learn how to use this marvelous tool effectively. The labyrinth invites us to see God on the journey with us. Come discover your journey.
How to Talk to Your Kids (5 to 18+ years old) About Money Johnson Room
Led by Rich and Anne Stein
Raise your hand if your parents had “the talk” with you. No not that talk! We mean the talk about how to balance your checkbook and manage your savings and plan for your future. Have you had that talk with your kids? To teach a child about money, you must first know his or her Money Personality. We will cover the Five Money Personalities and point you to assessment tools so that you can learn about your own money personalities and those of your kids. We will also cover the concept of a Money Relationship. We'll focus on the Money Personality relationship between you and your kids. Is your child a Spender? What does this mean for him at age 5? 12? 18? Or perhaps she is a Saver, Risk Taker, Security Seeker, or even a Flyer. Will the same money conversations work with each different personality? Of course not. But we’ll learn what the various conversations look like so you can have the successful interactions with your kids about money that will benefit them their entire lives.
Centering Prayer Group: Community in Silence Johnson Room
Every Tuesday 6–7pm
Led by Trinity’s Centering Prayer Group
If you have been to an Introduction to Centering Prayer workshop, and want to grow in your prayer life, consider joining Trinity’s Centering Prayer group. Members gather weekly to pray together, support each other in practicing the prayer and learn more about Centering Prayer. If you are interested in becoming a part of this community please contact Cindy Anderau (203) 426-2696 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Occasional time and location changes due to parish schedule
A Gathering of Men Maplewood: 166 Mount Pleasant Rd in Newtown
1st and 3rd Saturdays 9:00 AM – 10:30 AM
Led by Frank Brill and Dean Snellback
A Gathering of Men brings together men of the parish on a regular basis for prayerful companionship, reflection, and sharing. The goal of this initiative is to grow together in faith, fellowship and openness to God’s presence, and action. All men of the parish are invited to participate and new members are always welcome to join. Maplewood is providing the coffee.
Trinity Book Group
3rd Fridays 7:00 PM – 8:30 PM
Led by Various Parishioners
Join us as we explore the works of spiritual writers such as Anne Lamott, Frederick Buechner, Henri Nouwen and C.S. Lewis among others. Our aim is to read and discuss a book a month. Each meeting is hosted in the home of a different parishioner each month, so check the bulletin or the Trinty eNews for the current book and location. Attendance at every meeting is not required so feel free to come when time allows. The C.H. Booth Library on Main Street will have copies of each book set aside for our group to borrow. The Christian Formation Commission hopes you will enjoy this opportunity to socialize as well as further explore your faith journey. For details and sign up, email email@example.com or speak with Sophfronia Gregory or Nancy Cole.
Christian Gentle Spirit Yoga™ Glover Undercroft
1st, 2nd & 3rd Mondays 7:00 pm - 8:15 pm
Instructor Sheryl Bassford Fatse
This class is offered at Trinity for adults interested in spending time with God on the mat to restore both body and soul - no experience necessary. Gentle Spirit Yoga circle focuses on the pursuit of physical health and spiritual growth. It is led by trained instructor Sheryl Bassford Fatse who is a 200-hour registered yoga instructor and certified Divine Sleep Yoga Nidra© Guide. She meets students gently where they are, with breath work, guided restorative meditation, setting a healthy intention, noticing stress triggers, and finding joy in what "is".
Sheryl is generously offering her professional talent to Trinity for donations only, so please consider giving a free-will offering each class. Please bring a yoga mat, and light blanket for meditation, and if you have them, yoga block(s), yoga strap (or fabric belt). (Limited supplies will be available at class if you don't have any of these items.) Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to receive email updates regarding Gentle Spirit Yoga at Trinity.
The schedule may change due to room availability so stay tuned for future yoga dates/times.
Trinity Adult Education News
Adults walk through Trinity's doors with a variety of backgrounds, experiences, understandings and questions. We welcome this diversity and look to learn from each other as we explore questions of faith, life, spirituality and meaning
Our Sunday morning and weeknight classes, workshops and prayer groups seek to provide opportunities for spiritual growth, intellectual development, deepening connection to God and faithful living.
Go here to view our Spring schedule and list of ongoing programs.
At Trinity, adults will find a safe and exciting place to grow in their life in Christ.
Come join us!