In the Sanctuary at 8:30AM and 11AM -
a blended service of traditional and contemporary elements with communion

In the hall at 9:45AM
scripture, prayer, and creative response with communion

Worship each Sunday @ 8:30AM, 9:45AM, and 11AM

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We have moved the service that was tentatively planned for this Friday July 13th to Friday, September 21st 7PM-8:30PM in commemoration of th...

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Meditation on This Sunday's Gospel

by Kristin Berkey-Abbott

The Readings for Sunday, June 29, 2014:

First Reading: Jeremiah 28:5-9

First Reading (Semi-cont.): Genesis 22:1-14

Psalm: Psalm 89:1-4, 15-18

Psalm (Semi-cont.): Psalm 13

Second Reading: Romans 6:12-23

Gospel: Matthew 10:40-42

This week's Gospel reading has the flavor of the theme that Jesus develops more thoroughly in the 25th chapter of Matthew--that reading where Jesus reminds us that as we treat the least of our fellow humans, that is how we treat Jesus. This tiny Gospel reading reminds us of some of the themes Jesus returns to again and again: stay alert and watchful. Treat everyone as if they're God in disguise.  Keep our Christian priorities always in the front of our vision, so that we know what's important.

If I wrote a modern paraphrase, I might say something like this: Why do you swoon over supermodels and superathletes? What good do they bring into the troubled world? Why are you not searching out the words of the wise ones among you? Why do you neglect your duties to the next generation?

When I was younger and not surrounded by multiple types of media, it seemed easier to ignore the siren calls of the larger world. I remember a world before cable TV: we had four channels, and when we lived in Montgomery, Alabama, we could sometimes see a snowy version of one of Ted Turner's superchannels out of Atlanta. Little did we know that we were seeing what would become one of the cornerstones of the cable world. Even in the early days of cable, one's viewing options only expanded to 10-40 channels, and then, as now, half of those were just dreadful creations formed to take advantage of cheap airwaves.

At graduation a few years ago, I listened in shock as our graduation speaker told the graduates that there was no Internet 15 years ago. Of course there was. But there wasn't a widespread World Wide Web, so the medium was text based and not as user friendly. Unless we were at a university dedicated to the technology, it was slow and clunky. Therefore, we weren't as prone to let it suck away our lives.

Now we're surrounded by electronic information, media, and gadgets. Of course, in some ways, it's invaluable. It's much easier to research any subject from the comfort of my computer--unlike the old days, when I'd have to go to a library. It's easier to keep in touch and communicate, at least for those of us plugged in. I've often wondered if Christian communities online can be as valuable--even more valuable--in terms of keeping each other centered, grounded and on track. Are we headed towards virtual communion? Is that possible? What would it look like?

But of course, I wouldn't be the first to point out all the ways the technology can lead us astray. We spend our days dealing with e-mail instead of doing real work. In our quest to be connected, we often let our connections in the real, human world slide.

The Gospel for today reminds us that there are rewards for righteous living. Traditionally, Christian communities (at least in the last 300 years) have translated those rewards as coming in the afterlife. But we shouldn't overlook that righteous, connected living has rewards for us in our lives right here and now. We will be able to recognize the prophets and disciples that Jesus promises to send. We will be able to discern the presence of the Holy Spirit. We will not neglect our duties to the young and disadvantaged. We will drink from the streams of living water and be able to know what nourishes us and what saps our strength.

Monday, June 23, 2014

No 8:30AM Service this Sunday June 29th

There will be no 8:30AM Service this Sunday June 29th 
The 8:30AM Service will resume Sunday July 6th

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Pastor Keith Update

I will be away at the annual Florida-Bahamas Synod Assembly this weekend up in Orlando.  Trinity Lutheran is one of 180+ congregations of the Florida-Bahamas Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA). The ELCA is composed of 65 such synods and approximately 10,000 congregations.  What is a congregation of the ELCA? 
“ELCA congregations are centers for evangelical mission, where people of faith celebrate, learn and connect with one another and others around the world through service and weekly worship. We are a church that belongs to Christ. There is a place for you among our nearly 10,000 congregations across the United States, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. We are the church that shares a living, daring confidence in God’s grace. For us as the ELCA, this faith comes through the good news of Jesus Christ and gives us the freedom and the courage to wonder, discover and boldly participate in what God is up to in the world.”

We as the Florida-Bahamas Synod meet annually in assembly to worship God, to find inspiration, to fellowship, to share and learn, and to do the business of the synod. Trinity’s Vice-President, Reed Talbert, is Trinity’s lay representative this year.  This year is a faith and family assembly so Saturday is set aside for workshops and other greats events. I will be co-leading one workshop on Cross+Generational Ministry (our 9:45AM Worship Together service is one example) and assisting in a workshop on Social Media and the church led by a friend of mine. I also will be serving as the Interim Secretary of the synod for this assembly and have been nominated for election for the regular synod secretary position which will take place during the assembly. At the assembly I will also be completing my second three-year term as a voting member on the Synod Council and third year on the Executive Committee.  You can learn more about our synod and the goings on at the assembly at https://fbsynod.com.    
Please continue to keep Vince Vega and the Vega family in your prayers as he recovers from his recent car accident. We continue to collect money for the Pastoral Care Fund to assist them while Vince is out of work. If you wish to made a donation to the Pastoral Care Fund for the Vega Family just make sure that the check is made out to Trinity Lutheran Church with "Pastor Care Fund" in the memo line or if you are giving cash that the envelope contain the same information along with your name and, if applicable, envelope number. And if you can, please consider helping load the moving truck for Chris and Maria Gramlich Saturday morning at 9117 NW 1st St Pembroke Pines, FL 33024

Help Pack Up the Gramlichs!

Chris and Maria Gramlich are moving north and would love your help in packing up the truck this Saturday June 21st beginning at 11AM at 9117 NW 1st ST Pembroke Pines 33025 or call them at 954 391 9730 for more info.


Friday, June 13, 2014


Vincent Vega was the victim of a car accident last week that that has left him needing ongoing physical therapy and in significant pain. Thanks be to God that he was not injured more seriously, however their car has been totaled and Vince has been unable to work. Since Vince's job does not provide sick leave or vacation time, while he is recuperating the family is without his income.  In support of Vince, Dany and their family, Trinity will be collecting a special offering for the Pastor Care Fund which will be specially used in support of the Vegas for now through July 6th  (four Sundays).

If you wish to made a donation to the Pastoral Care Fund for the Vega Family just make sure that the check is made out to Trinity Lutheran Church with "Pastor Care Fund" in the memo line or if you are giving cash that the envelope contain the same information along with your name and, if applicable, envelope number.

Please continue to keep the Vega family in your prayers as they walk this road to recovery and restoration of health.

Ever in Christ
Pastor Keith

John 1:14

Having Seen His Glory...

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Micah 6:6-8

What pleases the Lord most is not what we think it is....




PLEASE EMAIL TINA HINES at  tbalrna@aol.com if you can supply any of the following items

We listed the items and then the total number of that item still needed.

If you signed up for items and do not remember what you signed up for please contact Tina as well.

Remember there is a drop off box for non-perishable items in the nathex and you can put perishable items in the fridge in Munson-Mueller Hall ( the left sign of Charter Hall)

Thank you,

Pastor Keith


large bags Ore Ida tater tots - 3

large bags plain potato chips - 2

cans powered koolaid drink mix - 10

can powered lemonade mix - 8

bags seedless grapes - 7

bags sliced apples - 3

1 bottle Ranch Dressing

1 tubs butter/margarine

large containers vanilla yogurt - 5

1 pint strawberries

1 large bag tangerines

1 jar maraschino cherries

plain cookies - 5 dozen

cans vanilla frosting - 2

cans chocolate frosting - 2

1 jar chocolate sprinkles

1 jar yellow sprinkles  

1 boxes of fruit snacks

1 jar cinnamon

1 container cinnamon sugar

50 twist ties

1 package bathroom paper cups

Caution tape

rolls masking tape - 2

rope lights - 2

1 white sheet

Bright colored bed sheets – a bunch

Tub of whipped topping – 2

Bag of salad mix – 3

6 pack of large cupcakes


Meditation on This Sunday's Gospel

by Kristin Berkey-Abbott

The readings for Sunday, June 15, 2014:

First Reading: Genesis 1:1--2:4a

Psalm: Psalm 8

Second Reading: 2 Corinthians 13:11-13

Gospel: Matthew 28:16-20

This Sunday is Holy Trinity Sunday, one of those festival Sundays that seem a bit baffling, at first (like Christ the King Sunday, which comes at the end of the liturgical year). We understand the significance of Christmas, Easter, and Pentecost. But what exactly do we celebrate on Holy Trinity Sunday?

At first reading, the Gospel doesn't seem to help. And Jesus certainly didn't spend any time indoctrinating his disciples on these matters which would later split the church. He alludes to the Triune God: we see him pray to God and he tells the disciples that he will send a Comforter. But he spends far more time instructing the disciples on how they should treat the poor and destitute, about their relationship to the larger culture, about their role in creating the Kingdom in the here and now.

You get a much better understanding of the Trinity by reading all the lessons together (thanks to my campus pastor from days of old, Jan Setzler, who pointed this out in his church's newsletter almost a decade ago). These aren't unfamiliar aspects: God as creator of the world, God as lover of humans, Christ who came to create community, the Holy Spirit who moves and breathes within us and enables us to create community.

Notice that we have a God who lives in community, both with the various aspects of God (Creator, Savior, Spirit) and with us. It's an image that baffles our rational minds. It's akin to contemplating the infinity of space. Our brains aren't large enough or we don't know how to use them in that way.

My atheist and agnostic friends will sometimes pull up these issues of a triune God when they ask me to defend the faith. I tell them that I can't do it and that I'm content to be living as part of this great mystery. Baffled, they look at me. They say, "You're an educated woman. Certainly you can't accept something you can't explain!!!"

Well, frankly, there are many things I can't explain: electricity, computers, internal combustion engines, arcane French literary theory. Does that mean that I'm going to live in the dark or not use my car? Of course not.

The message that Jesus brings us is refreshingly simple, in that it's easy to understand: "Go and make disciples."

Obviously, it's not that simple, and here, too, interpretations of this text have split the church. Does our commitment stop once we've baptized people? What does it mean to make disciples? There's an infinite supply of answers.

The God that we see in our Scriptures is a God of action. We see God creating in any number of arenas. We are called to do the same. This is not a God who saves us so that we can flip through TV channels. Our God is a God who became incarnate to show us how to be people of action: Go. Make disciples. Teach. Baptize. Keep the commandments. We do this by loving each other and God. We love not just by experiencing an emotion. Love moves us to action.

Our job is not done once we’ve baptized. Our job is not done with the Rite of Confirmation. Jesus, as always, points the way. Why not share a meal together? Why not do some work (fishing perhaps? Building housing for the poor? Weeding the gardens?) together? Why not read the same book?  Why not pray together? Why not create a beautiful work of art together?

Our Triune God calls us to go and make disciples, but two thousand years of Church history shows us a delightful diversity of ways to do that. Theologian Frederick Buechner reminds us in his book Wishful Thinking: "The place God calls you to is where your deep gladness and the world's deep hunger meet." Jesus promises to meet us there.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Philippians 2:4-5

Of the Same Mind of Christ...

Monday, June 09, 2014


PLEASE EMAIL TINA HINES at  tbalrna@aol.com if you can supply any of the following items (we listed the totals needed  - if you can supply some of a total that’s fine too!)
Thank you,
Pastor Keith
6 packages of hotdog buns
3 packages baby carrots
3 loaves white bread
1 large jar peanut butter
1 large jar jelly
3 large bags tater tots
3 large bags plain potato chips
10 cans powered koolaid drink mix
9 can powered lemonade mix
7 bags seedless grapes
3 bags sliced apples
1 bottle Italia Dressing
4 bottles Ranch Dressing
2 tubs butter/margarine
5 large containers vanilla yogurt
1 pint strawberries
1 large bag tangerines
1 jar maraschino cherries
5 dozen plain cookies
2 cans vanilla frosting
2 cans chocolate frosting
2 large bags plain m&ms
2 large bags twizzlers
1 jar chocolate jimmies
1 jar yellow jimmies
10 bags of popcorn
2 boxes of fruit snacks
1 jar cinnamon
1 container cinnamon sugar
1 package napkins
3 packages small paper plates
8 packages plastic forks
4 packages plastic spoons
2 packages plastic knives
1 package foam cups
2 rolls paper towels
4 packages 9 oz clear cups
50 twist ties
1 package bathroom paper cups
Caution tape
2 rolls masking tape
2 rope lights
1 package colored sharpies
1 white sheet
1 kid sized explorer hat
5 weird hats
1 package colorful bandaids
Bright colored bed sheets

Sunday, June 08, 2014

Confirmation 2014!


Saturday, June 07, 2014

1 Peter 1:23

Of Imperishable Seed...

Friday, June 06, 2014

Acts 2:1-4a

Like Divided Tongues of Fire, the Spirit Comes...

Wednesday, June 04, 2014

Meditation on This Sunday's Gospel

The readings for Sunday, June 8, 2014:

First Reading: Acts 2:1-21

First Reading (Alt.): Numbers 11:24-30

Psalm: Psalm 104:25-35, 37 (Psalm 104:24-34, 35b NRSV)

Second Reading: 1 Corinthians 12:3b-13

Second Reading (Alt.): Acts 2:1-21

Gospel: John 20:19-23

Gospel (Alt.): John 7:37-39

Ah, Pentecost, day of fire and wind and foreign languages.

Contemplate how much of Scripture circles around the breath of God. Reread Genesis--creation comes into being because God breathes it into life. Something similar happens in the Gospel of John. Jesus breathes on his disciples and transforms them. Likewise in Acts--that great rushing wind. For those of you in love with words and older translations, we often find the same word in these passages: Pneuma (yes, that root that creates our modern word of pneumonia).

The twenty-first century church, at least some branches of it, is in serious need of the breath of God. Perhaps you are too.

I often think of those first followers, who went out with the breath of God in them, and transformed the world. In the history of social movements, few have been as broadly successful as Christianity.  My atheist friends would chime in that few have been as destructive--we both may be right. What an unlikely story: a small band of weirdly talented or distinctly ungifted men and women head out in pairs, carrying very little with them, and they survive enormous obstacles. In the process, they change the culture--and often, then, they move on. Think of the distances that they travelled--often on foot. Think of how hostile the culture was. You wouldn't be able to suspend your disbelief if you read it in a book.

The breath of God should transform us in the same way. Jesus transfers his powers to his disciples; we're given the power to do what he does. Now, if only we could believe it.

Maybe the key is to act as if you do believe it. You can do remarkable things, even if you don't feel like you can.

We start on a small scale. We go to church. Maybe we remember the weekly lessons on Monday. As years go by, we're better at being Christians throughout the week. We bolster our efforts with spiritual reading and prayer. As we find ourselves transformed, we transform those around us. Many of us stop at this stage or we run out of time--but some of us will go on to transform society: maybe we'll start a food pantry or create legislation that takes care of foster children. Maybe we'll challenge our home countries to look out for the civil rights of all. Maybe we'll issue the same challenge to other cultures. Hopefully, whether it be on a small scale or an international scale, no Christian can be immune to the call to care for the dispossessed, whether on a small, interpersonal scale, or a large, international scale.

It's also important to talk about the cyclical nature of the spiritual life and work. Even Jesus needed to retreat to solitude at times. Even Jesus had to practice self-care. If you feel that you've had the very marrow sucked out of your bones as you've cared for the world, maybe it's time to retreat. Even if you can't physically leave, you can let the machine pick up the phone and turn off the electronics. If you can't do much else, claim some time for the occasional nap. No one can go at an insane pace for very long and stay sane.

Pentecost is an overlooked church holiday. No church holiday gets as much time as Christmas, not even Easter. But Pentecost is such an important reminder of why Christmas happened. God became incarnate to prepare humans to carry on the work of Kingdom creation. And Pentecost reminds us of our job description.

So, receive the breath of God. For a powerful meditative exercise, you might imagine that as you inhale, God breathes into you. Breathe deeply.

Monday, June 02, 2014

Matthew 5:16

Why our light shines...

Sunday, June 01, 2014

Audio of Today's Sermon

Today's sermon audio can be found at the top of tho page or here: https://www.buzzsprout.com/11862/178239-our-one-witness-to-a-world-that-needs-one