At Trinity's Annual Meeting on February 8, 2015, Trinity elected four elders to the Session, the name of the servant leaders in Presbyterian churches. Let us introduce the new elders:
Paul and Lisa, along with their two daughters, have attended Trinity for the past 16 years. Paul grew up in Texas but has found a home in Tacoma, and especially at Trinity. Paul is currently attending school for counseling psychology, and is excited to come on the Trinity Session at such an important time in the church's history.
"I am very excited to be part of a team that will be thinking creatively about the vital aspects of community and worship. I am also excited to have the privilege to work alongside some great folks who are already so engaged in the leadership of the church through Trinity's Session."
Erika grew up in Spokane where her parents and siblings still reside. She came "over to the West side" to attend PLU where she graduated with a Biology degree and met and married Mark Mariani. While Mark attended medical school, Erika studied theology at Fuller and worked in Christian universities or churches for the next 8 years. In 2005, they came home to Tacoma, where they started attending Trinity. Their three children have all been born here.
"I have always loved the atmosphere at Trinity. I love the genuine expressions of community and worship I feel on Sunday mornings and I appreciate the commitment that our community has to one another in serving together whether that be in teaching Sunday School or repairing the ceiling on a Saturday night so we can worship on Sunday. I love that we are comfortable with the people who make up our body but that we also feel motivated and called to reach out to the community that surrounds our church."
The wife of Mark and the mother of two teenagers, Nalani works full time at the United Way of Pierce County managing their Early Learning investments and community initiatives and has the occasional odd job teaching or facilitating large-scale change efforts. Nalani shares her thoughts of serving on Session:
"I'm hoping my professional background and previous work with the Building Steering Committee will be helpful on Session as Trinity moves into its own large-scale change regarding the restore/remodel of our church building. I expect that I'll gain a great deal of wisdom and appreciation for fellow Session members, as well as an opportunity to deepen my faith in this new season of my life.
I love the genuine relationship and concern for each other that is fostered every Sunday at Trinity and played out in dozens of ways throughout the week. I love the multiples ways Trinity expresses its faith through service, love and relationship with Bryant neighborhood's children and families. I love that we don't pretend to know all the answers, but are willing to live into the questions, together."
Born in Tacoma, Tom lives less than a mile from Trinity and finds it hard to imagine going anywhere else."
"I know there are probably lots of great churches out there, but this one just fits me and my family so well. It's got some grit to it. It has this practical, servant approach to the gospel that is indisputable. And it has a bunch of people here that I kind of love."
During the days, Tom works as a Creative Director at Russell Investments. He has been married to his "amazing wife, Deb, for about a million years." They have four children (Tom is pictured with his two daughters). When he's not at work, Tom writes books, plays bass, coaches soccer, and makes posters.
"I hope to give some thoughts to Trinity's connection to creative expression. How do we connect to each other, to our community, and to God through our creative gifts?"