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Seeking the renewal of all things through Jesus Christ

Trinity Together | January 2016

News for 01.11.16
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A monthly look at our life with God, one another, and our neighbors







Last year, Trinity undertook the major work of prayer and discernment to set a direction for our life together in the years to come. Our hope is that as we remember 2015 — a year which might have been personally surprising, or sorrowful, or celebratory — we also remember it as one in which we gathered as a church body around a collective mission.

Let me briefly remind you what that work entailed:

  • Over the summer, our various leadership and ministry teams worked to clarify our church’s organizational structure, specifying relationships between our many teams and determining the policies and procedures of each team.

  • In the early fall, congregational input on all aspects of our life together poured in through surveys, focus groups, and vehicles of informal feedback. This feedback was the crucial bedrock for the work to come.

  • With this incredible amount of feedback, our leadership teams and officers met throughout the fall to consider, digest, and prioritize all of the congregational contributions. The result of this work was a draft plan for our life together.

  • This working draft was then given for additional congregational feedback, and from that input changes were made and a final plan for our life together in the coming years was adopted.

With 2015 and the task of setting a direction for our life together now behind us, we will proceed into 2016 with hopeful expectation that the Lord will lead us in each of our stated endeavors. As this new year commences, we will also give special attention to the annual theme for 2016— Year of Community.

In His sovereignty, God has called us—Trinity Church—together as a local expression of His own body in this time and in this place so that we, as a community and together with Christ, might seek the renewal of all things.

Looking back we can see that God has worked through this particular community in amazing ways over the last four decades. We are eager to acknowledge that heritage in various ways and with several events during a year-long celebration of Trinity’s 40 years.

But we will also look forward as a community. We will focus in 2016 on exploring the ways in which God has uniquely called and gifted our community, and how He might long to continue working in and through it in particular ways. Guided by the church calendar, we hope to deepen our understanding of community. For instance, during Epiphany we give special attention to Christ and his church’s mission together as a community. As we celebrate a Year of Community, let us collectively explore how our congregation might increasingly glorify God, continue to be transformed, and additionally work for the good of our neighbors and the world.



The Session met on December 10, welcomed visitors, and prayed for the congregation and ministries of the church.

The Session then processed the common administrative actions of approving minutes and receiving or transferring members.

The Session then heard encouraging reports from the Special Needs Ministry, Hope Presbyterian Church and one of our ministerial candidates.

The Session received, discussed and approved a proposal from the Spiritual Formation Leadership Team to begin an Every-Age, Every-Stage Catechesis. This plan will support people at Trinity, from birth to death, as they transition through the key stages of life with Christian training, healthy practices, mentoring relationships and a marking event. The SFLT will begin with a few specific transitions and slowly add additional components over several years.

The Session then moved into an Executive Session to review evaluations from the Personnel Committee.

Next Meeting: Thursday, January 14, 7:00PM in room 201 as a CGC meeting.

Questions? Email:

Session FAQ

What is “Executive Session”? Whenever the Session needs to discuss matters in a confidential meeting, it moves into what is called an ‘Executive Session’. This arrangement means that only elected elders and pastors remain in the room. It’s used primarily for church discipline cases or confidential personnel-related items. Sometimes, when reviewing pastors, only the elected lay elders remain.

Do you still have a question about our Session or CGC? Let us know by emailing and we will address it in future issues of the Session update.



In September 45 church members submitted a nomination to the Officer Development Ministry Team (ODMT) for one or more members to become a Deacon or an Elder. 28 were nominated in total with 20 receiving the required three nominations. After discussion and prayer, 10 men agreed and were approved by the Session to enter a period of discernment and training to help each determine if this is a call from the Lord he should answer at this time. Some wanted to wait until another year.

As these 10 begin the next step on the road to possible election by the congregation in May, we are sharing their names so all of us may be praying for them and their families and taking opportunities to get to know them. The current nominee class includes Trey Coe, Keita Ikeda, Jerry Jared, Michael Joyce, Russell Marks and David McWhorter for the office of Deacon and, for Elder, John Gayle, Fitz Green, Sam Heath and Corey McLellan. Contact any member of ODMT with questions or concerns about this process.

-The Officer Development Ministry Team (Clay Daniels, Nancy Briggs, Susan Prindle, Joyce Field, Russ Edwards, Bob Amacker)


Bill Cassidy has been a Trinity elder for 16 years. His ministry has been a mix of outreach, teaching, friendship, mentoring, and individual service that he extends to folks of all ages and stages, although he is particularly involved with allowing younger men to benefit from the perspective of his experiences. He offers to help them learn from a seasoned veteran about serving their families while caring for themselves and growing as a Christian. It is a ministry that does not require one to be an elder, and he is eager to see other more mature members of our body—“pockets of untapped jewels”—get involved. He strongly suggests such members attend the new adult ed class on “The Art of Spiritual Mentoring.”

Bill and his wife Betsy came to Charlottesville so that he could attend business school at UVA and she could teach school. They became Christians through a charismatic house church and later joined Trinity. Betsy says she was “excited by the alive-ness of the preaching and teaching and glad to be a part of the emerging new church.” Bill and Betsy have hosted small groups in their home for years. Betsy helped with the library over the years as well as teaching Sunday School. Bill served as a deacon for a few years but gave it up when he became a father. Their sons, Billy and Tim, were raised at Trinity and home-schooled by Betsy. Billy obtained a degree in computer science at UVA and is employed locally. Tim served for a time with Campus Crusade in Mexico City where he met his wife; the two still live there.

Betsy says she loves Bible study and enjoys photography, reading, and genealogy. Bill is engaged with serving as a Hospice volunteer, is an active SOCA referee, and is often busy with the yard work necessary to maintain their two-acre property.

Bill is grateful for the vision recently articulated by the Session and the pathway it offers. He is excited by the concept of spiritual transformation, having experienced an awakening himself through some of the formation practices convincing him that “God is not through with me yet.” The practices allow access to the means of grace and he longs to see them spread deeply and broadly at Trinity. He is also challenged by the concept of unity in a multi-ethnic body and wants to learn and experience more of that. Finally, he supports the work to better care for our people but says we need to recognize it is work we all are called to, not expecting it to be done for us because, as Bill says, “being helped and helping others are two sides of the same coin.”


Kase and Mary Elizabeth Luzar have been at Trinity for much of the last 16 years, having begun attending when they were UVA students. In their undergraduate years they individually got involved with Reformed University Fellowship and then-leader Greg Thompson. The two later met through a course in oceanography, and they credit Greg and Courtney with providing them spiritual and personal guidance during those years.

After graduation each moved to Austin, Texas, Mary Elizabeth’s hometown. Kase, who had played football at UVA, worked there as a high school coach. Greg went to Texas to perform their wedding in 2005. As a Virginia native Kase could not stay away long, so they soon returned to Charlottesville where he began coaching as a graduate assistant with the UVA football team. Mary Elizabeth began work with the UVA Alumni Association, a job she loves and has continued for the last 10 years, involving event planning with young alumni and advising student leaders. For the past five years Kase has worked with Relay Foods and has made time to train and run 10 marathons, as well as staying engaged with sports alumni and attending all kinds of UVA games.

After their return to Trinity, the Luzars joined a small group with other young couples. Seeing a friend’s need let Mary Elizabeth recognize a service gap, leading her to help launch Trinity’s Expectant Parents Ministry. A few years later Kase was nominated to serve as a Deacon, though he says it took him two years to discern that it was a call he should answer. Since then he has found a wonderful avenue of service with a dedicated group of men and a good fit on the Facilities Committee. He gives credit and thanks to all the men and women who have played a part over 35 years in providing for and maintaining the beautiful grounds and facility with which Trinity is blessed.

The Luzars now have a 3½-year-old daughter, Adele, and enjoy teaching her Sunday school class this year. They have each served as mentors for different Fellows over a number of years, and Kase urges all UVA fourth-years to look into what that program, both here and in other places, can offer a new graduate.

In thinking about his role and Trinity’s future, Kase reflects on the way Trinity members greeted and cared for them as students, which he wants to continue for others. He also sees that in the midst of all the programs and structures necessary in a large church, we should stay focused on the cornerstone of our faith, uniting ourselves with God and each other as His body.



Thank you! Trinity reached approximately $2,350,000 in giving last year. Our goal was $2,270,000, which means that giving was about $80,000 above expectations. Praise God for the generosity of his people!

In addition to the general fund giving, other funds (mercy, missions, counseling, building, etc) received substantial designated gifts.


We're still finishing up the official year-end results of all giving and expenses, and will present those as part of the 2016 budgeting process.



*This is a new addition to our monthly publications. In order for us to grow in generosity as givers, we must also grow in wisdom and discernment about our finances more broadly. Toward that end, you'll find here a brief stewardship suggestion each month.

Think it's too late to save for retirement for 2015? Not necessarily! The ability to save in Traditional and Roth IRAs for 2015 extends until April 15th. And since contributions are only available on an annual basis, they are something of a "use it or lose it" opportunity, so don't miss out a chance to save when you can.

Sermon Podcast Parish Small Groups
Morning Prayer Emails Current Adult Ed Offerings
Evening / Family Prayer Emails Spiritual Formation Retreats


Sunday, January 24: Budget Q&A, 10:00am in the Parlor at Trinity
Sunday, January 31: Budget Q&A, 10:00am in the Parlor at Trinity
Sunday, January 31: Encore Luncheon, 12:30pm at Trinity
Sunday, January 31: Budget Night, 5:00pm at Trinity

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