Today’s Word from Pastor Jim…

Imagine if you will, Whidbey Island without Trinity Lutheran Church.

There would be no cross illuminating the sky high above Freeland.  Preschoolers would have no place to go.  Families would experience heightened anxiety.  Some of our most vulnerable Whidbey neighbors would be cold in the winter as our wood ministry team would be no more.  Good Cheer would lose much of its funding, Helping Hand would be out of business.  College students would be saddled with debt.  12 step groups and many other groups would have nowhere to meet.  Local non-profits would be less likely to survive.  Weddings and funerals would need new venues.  Concerts that benefit the larger community would no longer be by freewill admission, as ticket sales would close the doors to low income music lovers.  Tiny houses would not be built, medical transport would not be provided, handicapped ramps would not be built.  The inclusive, grace filled Gospel of Jesus Christ would not be preached here if the Church Where Everybody’s Welcome closed its doors.

Imagine if you will, the world without Trinity Lutheran Church.

On the streets of Seattle unhoused and unsheltered people would feel the loss of our His Hands Extended Ministry.  There would be less money available to support rebuilding in disaster ravaged areas like Maui and Haiti.  As World Hunger money shrank, lacking hundreds of thousands of dollars from TLC, more would suffer from food insecurity, and some would die from malnutrition.  Fewer refugees would be able to be resettled in Seattle, the people of Ukraine would be without critical support, the hundreds of quilts delivered each year from TLC would no longer offer comfort to the afflicted.  Nursing homes would lose funding, seminaries would lack students, missionaries would stay home, our online presence would disappear leaving dispersed worshippers without a home.  In Israel, Palestinians would have diminished health care.  Our global reach would cease if Trinity ceased to exist.

Imagine if you will, the world without Trinity Lutheran Church.

It is not a stretch you know.  Thousands of Christian Churches close their doors every year.  The House of Prayer is no more, the Little Brown Free Methodist Church is but a memory, and many Lutheran Churches in Washington have closed their doors.  It is estimated that some 65 million Americans have left the organized church.  They have not necessarily lost their faith, but they no longer attend church.  No one wants to imagine a community without churches and yet that danger is real.

My intention is not to alarm you, rather I want to thank you.  I want to thank you for your faithful support, for your worship attendance, for the service you provide, for the songs you sing and the cookies you bake.  Trinity has been able to buck the national trends, we have grown during a time of drastic decline by focusing on Jesus and uniting for good. We are a beacon of hope on Highway 525.  We are called to be people of hope. We are called to work for the common good. We are called to live and love as Jesus did and that is done most faithfully and effectively as a community.  On our own, in isolation, we cannot achieve nearly as much as we can when we work together for the common good.  Christianity is a movement that was meant to be lived out in community.

I thank you for following Jesus, I thank you for keeping this movement moving!

See you in Church!

Pastor Jim

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