Controversial Parables

Week of Sunday, September 24

16th Sunday after Pentecost

Read with photos here! 


Matthew narrates one of Jesus’ controversial parables, in which Jesus says the reign of God is like workers who get paid the same no matter when they start. When God changes his mind about punishing Nineveh for their evil ways, Jonah is angry. Yet God is gracious and merciful, abounding in steadfast love. In baptism we receive the grace of God that is freely given to all. As Luther wrote, in the presence of God’s mercy we are all beggars.

Readings and Psalm:

Jonah 3:10–4:11

God’s concern for the city of Nineveh

Psalm 145:1-8

The Lord is slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love. (Ps. 145:8)

Philippians 1:21-30

Standing firm in the gospel

Matthew 20:1-16

The parable of the vineyard workers


Redevelopment Process

Focusing on our mission

First Lutheran Church of the Trinity has entered into a redevelopment partnership with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and the Metropolitan Chicago Synod of the ELCA.

The redevelopment process is focused not only on sustainability of resources, but on creating a culture where our congregation is participating in the work of the spirit.

Each month our redevelopment team will identify something new to focus on, or we will continue to work in the areas recommended by the Synod.  These areas are Growth, Shared Leadership, Discipleship, Stewardship, Contextual and Relevant Worship, and an Inclusivity Plan.

The latest redevelopment news is always available on our blog! 

Stewardship and Sabbath: Connecting to God, Connecting to Each Other 

You may notice two new things this month:

1) Coffee is set up in the back of the sanctuary after worship.  We invite you to stay after worship, have conversations and connect with your church family.

2) There is a 2018 Pledge Card in the Sunday bulletin. As we work on next year’s budget we are asking some very important questions about how members share their time, talent, and treasure in our faith community.  Please read the letter from treasurer Will Tanzman. When you are ready you may place your pledge card in the offering, hand it to Rene or Will, or complete an online pledge form at

We are a faith community 

September Sabbath

On the day God rested, God also announced that people should rest, enjoy the creation, and enjoy one another—see the creation and exclaim “this is Good!” Part of making Sunday a real Sabbath, is actually resting—not doing work outside of studying and learning and worshipping. In addition, it’s really important that we, as a congregation connect with one another!  During the month of September we will be holding fellowship in the back of the sanctuary.  We encourage you to join us for coffee and conversation during fellowship time!

Annual Meeting

Our annual meeting is tentatively scheduled for Sunday, December 3.  At this time we will elect a new church council and officers. If you would like to nominate yourself or someone else, please email welcome@firsttrinitychicago to nominate a member to run for a position.  There will be more details and a solid date set soon and we will share that information as soon as possible.

First Trinity Pet Blessing

Sunday, October 8 – Our annual commemoration of St. Francis of Assisi and celebration of God’s creation! Pets are welcome to join in worship and will be blessed in a special ceremony at the end of the service. Weather permitting we will hold worship outside.  Facebook event here.

Taking Place : Stories of Coming, Making, and Finding Home

Join community members and friends as they perform stories of Taking Place! And coming/finding/making HOME!

And some special live music, TBA soon! Mark your calendars and come on out!  Thursday, October 5.  Facebook event here 

Called to grow in the Spirit

Tuesday Bible Study

Every Tuesday we meet to read and discuss the Bible and share prayer together.  All Are Welcome + You Are Invited. Tuesdays 7 pm in the Community Center Kitchen.


Living Lutheran Discussion Group

Living Lutheran is a publication of the ELCA that is distributed free to all members.  Each month we gather on the last Sunday of the month at 9:15 am to discuss the recent issue.  Join us in the community center kitchen for this month’s meeting, September 24.

Bring a copy of Living Lutheran or use one of ours!  All Are Welcome + You Are Invited!

First Trinity Kids

First Lutheran Church of The Trinity is thrilled to announce the start of youth programming for the 2017-18 school year!  Our confirmation class has many fun events planned, including visits to the Hindu Temple and Six Flags.  Parents with youth ages 11-16 who are interested in participating in confirmation are encouraged to contact for more information.

Youth 10 and under are invited to Godly Play, an innovative approach that helps children to explore their faith through story, to gain religious language and to enhance their spiritual experience though wonder and play. Based on Montessori principles and developed using a spiral curriculum, the Godly Play method serves children through early, middle and late childhood and beyond. Come join us Sundays, 9:15 am beginning Sunday, September 17.

This Changes Everything

Plans are coming together for the 2018 ELCA Youth Gathering.  Students entering high school will be eligible to attend and there are scholarships available.  Speak to Samantha for details!

Dia de los Muertos is fast approaching.

Please bring your items for the offerenda beginning in October.  If you would like to have the name of a loved one read out loud on Dia De Los Muertos, please put it in the offering basket.  We will collect these until November 5.


Love as Christ loves us

God’s Closet 


Tuesday 5-7 pm

Friday 10 am – Noon

God’s Closet is our free, volunteer run clothing pantry.  All are welcome to take clothes, donate, share or serve a meal.  If you are interested in serving a meal please contact

During the month of September we will not do the work God’s Closet on the Sabbath, as good as that work is. Instead we will relax, have coffee, and enjoy one another after worship. And that’s it! Tuesdays and Fridays we continue the mission.  Sundays we will simply connect and be refreshed.  See Pastor Tom’s letter for more information.



This year we will continue our Thanksgiving tradition of hosting a community meal at First Trinity.  Cooking and setting up will begin early at 11 am, and dinner will be around 5 pm.  Give Thanks and share a meal with friends, family and community members at First Trinity.

This is a potluck, and like all of our community meals your “dish to pass” can be: a side dish, dessert, a donation to the church or God’s Closet (cash, coats, can goods, etc…), help with set up, help with clean up, bringing a friend, sharing a story or song!

BYOC – Bring Your Own Container (for leftovers!)

BYOB – Bring Your Own Beverage

All Are Welcome!



We are collecting Halloween Costumes again this year to give away during October. Many youth in our community rely on God’s Closet to get in the spooky spirit for their

Halloween parties and trick or treating! Old uniforms, fabric, wigs, funky clothing and accessories, and of course costumes are appreciated! If you have gently used costumes or props that you would like to donate, please drop them off with our volunteers on Tuesdays or Fridays.

Halloween falls on a Tuesday this year, so we will have a trick or treat drop in party for youth! Details to come.

Participate in God’s liberating work of justice and peace

Bridgeport Alliance 

Those interested in working to bring justice and peace to our community are encouraged to join Bridgeport Alliance.  BA was founded in part by members of First Trinity and continues to meet in our kitchen (at least) monthly.  If you are interested contact or visit their Facebook page.

Books to Prisoners

Midwest Books to Prisoners has been meeting at First Trinity for several years now, under the leadership of Bob, our Director of Music.  They are always looking for help sorting and packing books, reading and responding to letters, donating books (especially dictionaries) and donations for postage.  See Bob or visit their Facebook page for more information.

The People’s Lobby Public Meeting will be Sunday, November 5.  There will be busses leaving Bridgeport around 1:30 from First Trinity.  Details will be shared as available.