SENIOR WARDEN'S REPORT (VESTRY)
Senior Warden's Report
When I joined the vestry in 2021, we were still trying to figure out a new - and post-pandemic - normal. As my time on the vestry draws to a close, I am truly in awe of how our parish has pulled together and the wonderful community we have here at Trinity. While other churches worry about dwindling attendance and financial woes, we remain a strong, vibrant place of worship, with a congregation that extends the boundaries of our church building thanks to our virtual presence and continued streaming of services.
Your vestry has had multiple areas of focus this year. As always, community and fellowship are at the top of the list as we continue to work to broaden opportunities for members of Trinity to
get together. Trinitarians love to be together, from the Lenten lunch series toTrekking in the 828.
Supper clubs are returning, and Clark Room Conversations (formerly Parents in Conversation) has been filled to capacity! Amy and several members of Trinity have formed a Creation Care Committee to ensure we are good stewards of God’s creations. Scott held a summit of Trinity leaders in May, which garnered strong feedback on growing our church community.
Historically and continually, Trinity has demonstrated a strong dedication to our Asheville and Appalachian communities through outreach. Our Outreach Committee has continued to support various ministries, including the Church of the Advocate, Appalachian Regional Ministry, ABCCM, and Rise Against Hunger. We have provided scholarships to campers for Camp Henry and supported Lake Logan, Western Carolina Rescue Ministries, Homeward Bound, Episcopal Relief and Development, and many other worthy charities. Just last month, Scott and Amy held an Outreach Retreat to strategize on informing members of outreach opportunities and encouraging volunteer participation.
This year, a discernment team for Trinity Place has worked tirelessly and with great care to evaluate agencies for continued ministry through Trinity Place. The vestry will hear from one of those agencies in an upcoming meeting as we work to discern the next steps for this valuable community resource.
The vestry has spent time evaluating our general security in order to maintain a safe, inclusive environment. We have invested in strengthening our physical building while improving overall accessibility and safety. Our Buildings and Grounds team at Trinity has been hard at work, ensuring we preserve and protect our physical worship space. We have an amazing church home, but as it ages, we must keep it in good shape for future worship and fellowship.
In closing, I return to the strength of Trinity and our wonderful community. What comes to mind as a demonstration of this is our Rector’s well-deserved vacation this summer. While that may seem an odd example of perseverance, I was so happy to see the pews filled, Amy’s smiling face, and an overall sense of normalcy. While we missed Scott, this parish has an amazing staff, a wonderful community of volunteers, and a desire to be together in worship. We managed to keep the ship afloat while the captain was away, with fairly smooth sailing. What a strong, stable, willing crew we have!
I am blessed to have served on this vestry for three years. The leadership of this group, the steadfastness, and the dedication to Trinity - I could not have asked for a more rewarding experience. Each member brings his or her own strengths and opinions, always keeping a love for Trinity at the forefront.
And the staff of Trinity - wow. When I walk through the church doors, I feel the community, energy, love for one another, the congregation, and God. I maintain that the staff of Trinity is unmatched, and I am so thankful for each staff member.
And to Scott, who leads this parish with steadfastness and grace - you juggle so many responsibilities, yet your center is clearly on our spiritual well-being and love for this parish. I have learned from your leadership and grown spiritually in your presence. Thank you.
And to the parish as a whole, thank you for the opportunity to serve. Trinity is a beloved community, and our strength is because of each and every one of you. Christ’s love is present in this wonderful building, and we take this love out into the world around us, enlightened and strengthened by Trinity, our church home.
Katherine Ray, Senior Warden