While the official Church Year begins with Advent, around a month before Christmas, few people really think about the year in those terms, so we’ve listed major events and celebrations at Trinity on a calendar year basis, grouping the months by quarter to deal with the moveable feasts of the church year. We hope you find it helpful! And don’t forget to check our Google Calendar for what’s happening right now!
The 12 days of Christmas end, we celebrate the Feast of the Epiphany, and winter comes to Northwestern Connecticut. During one of the last two Sundays of January we hold our parish annual meeting and potluck lunch.
Toward the end of the first quarter we have our own traditional Chocolate Sunday (celebrated the Sunday before Ash Wednesday) with a megadose of chocolate treats. Typically we do not celebrate Shrove Tuesday because our parishioners come from such a wide geographic area — we discovered that the traditional pancake supper got smaller and smaller, even as the congregation grew.
On Ash Wednesday we have a midday service and a 6 PM service, both with imposition of ashes, and the season of Lent begins.
Although some years it comes sooner, the quarter usually begins with Palm Sunday (when we process outside, weather permitting), Holy Week (when we have two services on Good Friday, and hold Easter Vigil on Easter Eve, with the New Fire, candlelit procession, chanting of the Exsultet, readings and hymns).
On Easter we have our major services at the usual times, and are delighted to welcome those who visit us only occasionally. Following the 10:30 AM service, we have an extra-big coffee hour and an Easter Egg hunt for the youngsters. (In some years the young people gather on Saturday to color Easter Eggs as well.)
Two major holidays, Pentecost and Trinity Sunday (our official birthday) wrap up the second quarter, usually along with a parish cookout on Memorial Day weekend.
Traditionally known as “Ordinary Time” we have our services as usual. The young people spend their time together outside. Our friends across the street at Lime Rock Park have their season in full swing.
During this quarter the young people get their Backpack Project up and running, collecting backpacks for needy kids in North Canaan. We also usually spend a day building for Habitat for Humanity sometime during the summer. As the quarter ends, the young people migrate back inside and school begins for them. We usually manage to squeeze in another cookout during this period.
And, around the time school starts up, we celebrate the end of summer with Sundae Sunday, an event especially for the kids but secretly enormously popular with kids of all ages. That’s right, we feature make your own ice cream sundaes at coffee hour that day.
Early in the fourth quarter, we celebrate the Feast of St. Francis with Blessing of the Animals — which we do right in church as part of the 10:30 AM Holy Eucharist.
So-called Ordinary Time draws to its conclusion with the feast of Christ the King, followed by Advent. Advent is the beginning of the next church year in the Episcopal Church.
We participate in (and sometimes host) the Ecumenical Thanksgiving Service for our Towns. The young people are busy creating their upcoming Christmas Pageant, which they present to us on the last Sunday of Advent during the 10:30 AM service.
At Christmas, we have two services on Christmas Eve — a family service in mid afternoon, and a more formal service sometime in early evening, preceded by a choral concert. On Christmas Day, we have a quiet Christmas service. On the first Sunday following Christmas, we celebrate with a service of lessons and carols.
All Year Long:
–Our choir sings all church year long!! And we love it!! They also usually present two or three Evensongs during the course of the year. Often our choristers have their ranks swelled by singers and other musicians from Crescendo — the musical organization created more than a decade ago at Trinity, now an independent 501(c)(3) organization that still makes Trinity their home base. Please see our Music page for lots more about this!
–We have major outreach activities, including annual Outreach Brunches, when representatives of area non-profits come and tell us about their programs. For more about our Outreach activities, please see the Outreach Page.
–We have art shows. Do we have art shows!! Seven shows per year, at present! At the present time, in addition to our traditional Invitational show around Labor Day weekend, our Art Show committee hosts juried shows both for conventional artwork and for photographs. We’re closely involved in the area art community. See our Art page for more information.
–Our Young People are active all year long, too, through the entire church year. Even summer, when summer sports substitute for Sunday School The third Sunday of each month is Youth Sunday, where the young people do most of the service. Of course you’ll also see them at all the major feasts as well, and virtually all Sundays they join the congregation for Holy Eucharist. Please see our Young People page.