But let justice roll down like waters, and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream.
— Amos 5:24
A Message from the Deacon
The Rev. Dcn. Tim Ervolina
Trinity Church can fool you. It’s got that “downtown Episcopal church” look on the outside: straight brick walls crafted to perfectly highlight Gothic-revival windows and doorways, an understated steeple reaching ever upward—set among gardens, courtyards, and a playground. The nave, decorated with soaring pillars and exposed beams, looks like an upside-down keel of an ancient boat. When the sunlight comes streaming through the stained glass behind the altar, it can take your breath away.
But that’s not really Trinity Church. Trinity Church is the family of Trinitarians, full of wonder and joy, walking the Way of Christ together. We saw that clearly this year, when we could not meet together due to the pandemic. Some congregations stepped back from their mission to bring the Reign of God into the world, but Trinity doubled down.
It’s been my joy to have served alongside so many faithful Trinity volunteers as your Deacon this year, with a focus on ensuring that our outreach to the city streets through the Church of the Advocate continues. COA’s work is challenging: serving those who live on the edge, many of whom struggle with severe mental illness, addictions, and the deep traumas of abuse, intimate partner violence and human trafficking.
That’s why we have The Well, a medical evaluation station, with a team of health-care professionals led by Brad Wilson. It’s why we have a large room, stocked with shoes, and another stuffed with personal care items. It’s why we have the Good Works! Crew, where people can learn (or re-learn) the soft skills that can help them move towards financial and personal stability. It’s why we have a counseling program in partnership with All Souls Counseling Center. It’s also why the Church of the Advocate anoints it all with prayers for justice, peace, and the dignity of every person.
It’s the centerpiece of the Gospel: the daily, prayer-soaked work of bringing Divine Justice to our world. Divine Justice is not the same as human justice. It’s redemptive, not punitive. It’s for everyone, not just those with the best lawyers, or the most social privilege. It’s specifically what Deacons are called to do in our work in the Church. We read the Gospel during the Eucharist, minister alongside the priests, setting the table as a preview of the bounteous feast that the Reign of God brings to all of us. It’s why we wear our stoles over our shoulder, slung like the towel Jesus wore when he washed his disciples’ feet. Divine Justice turns things upside down: the first come in last and the last, first. Everyone is welcome. Everyone is valued. Because Christ lived and died for us all.
Trinity Church grasps these truths deep in its spiritual DNA. It has been a real joy to have served within this place, with all of you, as we continue to let justice roll down like waters and righteousness like an ever-flowing spring. Thank you for the privilege of serving with you.
Go forth into the world, rejoicing in the power of the Spirit!
—The Rev. Timothy (Tim) M. Ervolina, Deacon