Last Sunday night something amazing took place at Trinity Lutheran - we had a dinner... and we had a beginning...
And it wasn't just any dinner - it was a true milestone in Trinity's history - one of the finest events we have ever put on at our church. A great meal, wonderful speaker, a chance to honor examples of faithful service and dedication to the Lord and his church, and the presentation of an opportunity to participate in the growth of God's Kingdom through Trinity's ministries - all in one night! We witnessed the drawing together of elements of our past and present as we prepare to move into the future together. It was truly a celebration of what God has done and continues to do in us and through us.

Celebration was definitely a part of the evening. We had a long-overdue opportunity to honor the examples of service that Fred and Ruth Noah have given the church. They are truly inspiring to all who have had contact with them - and our church's ministry is enriched and deepened by their participation. 

We also heard Mark Hiepler, former student at our day school who went on to a highly successful career as a lawyer specializing in medical malpractice, product liability and insurance bad faith claims. Mark credits his time at our school as being formative of his values and character, informing his faith and life as he has built a career helping others. Another Trinity alumnus making a real difference in the world- truly something to celebrate!

I also had an opportunity to share a challenge encapsulated by these four broad goals that are the directional framework of the Rooted in Faith, Growing in Excellence emphasis - all approved and adopted by the Church Council, which points us in a bold, growth-oriented direction. The basic goals were:

o   Raise $300,000 through gifts and pledges to secure the stability and growth of the School and Church for the next 3 years (the first level goal is $100,000 and the ultimate target goal is $300,000)
o   Achieve 25% growth by September 1, 2010 in church worship attendance and school enrollment
o   Achieve 50% growth by September 1, 2011
o   Achieve 100% growth by September 1, 2012

The challenge to BEGIN the process was to raise between $100,000 and up to our final goal of $300,000, to implement the plans and goals. I am extremely pleased to announce that as of the end of the day on Wednesday, July 3rd, just THREE DAYS after the dinner, our total dollar amount raised in outright gifts and pledges is slightly over $80,000! It is an awesome thing to see God's people rise to a challenge and embrace the ministry of God's kingdom.

Please return your pledge cards and donations soon - we are preparing to implement these plans immediately!  We need to be, and are willing and able to be, bold and even courageous in moving forward. Having your support and prayers is vital in what we are doing.

Leaders of the congregation, in both church and school ministries, are already gearing up for the challenge. Please don't misunderstand... To achieve these growth goals in simple numbers is NOT at all what we are after. Rather, deepening our spiritual growth through service, expanding our school ministry to a new level of excellence and Christian faith formation, and deepening our connection to God through study of his Word and worship - THIS is what we will be beginning and developing in the coming months.  Please pray with us and for us, and join us in this ministry.

Yours in Christ's Service,
Pastor Becker