By Liz Nolan, Contributing Writer
Northborough – Trinity Church officially welcomed their new pastor Rev. Valeria Schmidt at an installation service May 31.
Schmidt was ordained in Germany, where she lived and received most of her education. She described herself as easygoing, active and passionate about working toward peace and justice and raising awareness for protecting the environment.
Before relocating to Trinity Church, she served two small churches in Pennsylvania.
“I like Northborough,” she said. “Everyone seems to care about each other and all the churches work well together.”
Schmidt wants people to know that Trinity Church members are from a diverse group of cultures and faith backgrounds. The church community will always be respectful of others. It’s a safe place so people are accepted for who they are.
“We are open and affirming,” she said. “Everyone is welcome no matter your race, marital status, or sexual orientation. God is love. Our job is to be that love to other people who walk through the door.”
Schmidt enjoys experimenting with different forms of worship such as the outdoor worship service held Aug. 30 at the pavilion at Ellsworth-McAfee Park followed by a potluck lunch. Schmidt said the outdoor service is something different and interactive. She is also starting a contemporary Christian music band.
She is incorporating what she calls “God Moments” into Sunday worship services. It’s a time that people can share their faith experiences with others sitting nearby and maybe inspire others.
Working with children and youth is another aspect of Schmidt’s job that she loves. She hopes to revitalize the youth ministry in the church. “Young people not only learn, but teach,” said Schmidt. “Some parents are uncomfortable with bringing kids to services as they worry about disrupting the service. We love hearing children.”
Geared to the younger children is the Messy Church program, which incorporates songs, movement, activities and crafts. It is livelier and more informal than a regular service. Children are free to explore the church as a place that they are all welcome.
Schmidt also believes in bringing generations together. Older youth and adults committed time for a mission project with Matthew 25 in Worcester, a nonprofit organization that provides housing relief to those in need.
Trinity Church offers ways to engage and unite the community. They open their doors for various community group meetings as well as host the weekly community meal Wednesday nights at 6 p.m. Different churches and groups sponsor the weekly hot meal and all are welcome.
Schmidt hopes to see the return of its popular coffeehouse, an open mic event on scheduled Friday nights where the crowd shares their various talents. Other upcoming events include the carnival and Sunday school kickoff Sunday, Sept. 13, from 11:30 a.m. – 1 p.m. and activities for the town’s Applefest Sat., Sept. 19, to include a craft fair, roaming train, and Northboro Junior Woman’s Club’s famous Apple Pie Café.
Additional information on Trinity Church can be found at www.trinitynorthborough.org, by following Schmidt on Twitter @TrinityNorthbor or on the church’s Facebook page. Schmidt can also be contacted by calling 508-393-8156 or emailing [email protected].