Trinity Episcopal Church: A small church with a big heart
October 4, 2013, By Mike Fak, By some standards, Trinity Episcopal Church in Lincoln is a smaller church with a smaller congregation than many. But the 110 year old church at 402 Pekin Street in Lincoln casts a shadow of religious love and community caring that is as big as any larger church in the county.
It is a classical, century old church. It has a large altar in the front inside a coved area large enough for lecterns and choir. Wooden buttresses that reach around a high ceiling and ease back to the large stained glass windows draw one's eyes upwards. The church is impeccable with nothing visible needing cleaning or repair or painting. It is obvious this church means a lot to the congregation and it is kept up to a high standard.
A local walking in the door of a service at Trinity will find few strangers. Many of Trinity’s congregation are community activists: from members of local boards to civic organization members, to people who frequently become involved with community fund drives and more, the church is blessed with leaders.
Their newest Pastor, Father Mark Evans and his wife, Sandy Moore are approaching their second year at Trinity. Evans, who spent a career as a portfolio manager didn’t come to the priesthood until midlife. Evans said he always felt he should be doing more to advance God’s mission and started to become more and more involved in his church. But that too left him feeling he should be doing more and thus at an age where many would consider themselves settled into a lifetime career in the secular world, Evans went to Seminary and was ordained in the Episcopal Church. Evans said at the time he was dating Sandy and she supported his endeavor The two married in 2006 and Evans was ordained in 2009. Trinity is Evans first assignment and talking to congregation members they would have no complaints if it was his last.
According to church members, the two are a welcome addition to their church and have helped build a sense of church community that perhaps had waned in recent years. Besides being devout in their faith, the pair also has a sense of community outreach that fits perfectly with the active congregation that has had Trinity in the local news this past summer.
At one occasion, Father Evans gave a check for $1,250 to Community Action to help with their Senior Nutrition program which is always in financial need. On another occasion the church gave the same amount to the Logan County Habitat for Humanity group to help them continue their mission. In both cases, neither donation was solicited. And in both cases the money was truly appreciated.
The Church has a six-member Vestry that feels the pulse of the congregation and then makes such decisions and it is apparent everyone at Trinity is proud of their being able to help the community around them.
But Trinity also works hard to help promote their faith. Like all churches of all denominations, they support their diocese. But they also sent a check to a local seminary that is not required of them. They also are excited about working with a new sister diocese in the southern reaches of Peru. Both Mark and Sandy have written of their visit this past spring. The letters tell of how poor the people of the country are in all things but one: their faith. Sandy said that unlike what is being seen in America there are far more worshipers than clergy or churches to serve their needs and that Trinity Church members are excited to begin to try and help that region find comfort and a place to honor and serve God.
Sandy said the church has already sent a donation that was used to buy books for a library and they will do more as time passes.
Like all churches, Trinity faces the problem of keeping congregation members active in the church in a busy world. But with Mark and Sandy and a congregation of strong leaders who are dedicated to their faith and their community, the odds are Trinity will begin to make strides in their growth. It is a welcoming church full of caring people who delight in doing God’s work. And how can those attributes not lead to success.
Note: The following is from the front page of the Trinity Episcopal Church website.
We believe that every human being is important to God and to us. Therefore, we will emulate the life of Jesus in such a way that people will see a difference and want to be a part of our community. We will do this by:
• caring for each other
• being welcoming to all newcomers
• nurturing our youth
• making beautiful music
• learning and growing in our faith
• having joy in the liturgy
• and having fun together.