Team Trinity encourages active outreach growth

REED CITY – When you are able to serve others and help the community, the rewards are certainly twofold.

This is what Lori Pruitt, hospitality board chair at Trinity Lutheran Church and School, is seeing arise from the efforts put in by church and school families which are making a big difference with the Team Trinity initiative.

The goals of Team Trinity, Pruit said, are to bring the church and school families closer together with fun events that fall outside the confines of typical church and school functions; raise awareness to Trinity’s visibility as a gracious, friendly and welcoming place that is engaged in the the community; and to seek opportunities to serve and support those who live in the area.

“I think it is going very well,” she said. “It’s been very well received by our church and school family. There’s more visibility and we’ve seen a 15 percent jump of followers on our Facebook page. That is somewhat attributable to being out in the community.”

Since its inception in May, Team Trinity has jumped into the initiative head first by organizing five cash mobs to thank local restaurants that supported Trinity’s “We Care for Kids” Auction; participating in the National Wildlife Foundation’s Great American Campout on the church campus to help raise money for wildlife conservation; hosting a tailgate event for the Reed City High School soccer team on parents’ night to provide a meal after the game; cleaning up the Pere Marquette trail downtown in advance of the Wheatlake half-marathon and pass out water to runners mid-race; hosting multiple movie nights, which included movies for kids and adults; promoting local events from Art in the Park to the Roosevelt Diggs concert by encouraging families and Facebook followers to attend; march in several parades to hand out flyers to promote the church and school; and operating a concession stand at Westerburg Park during the Crossroads Festival.

Pruitt said the success so far of Team Trinity is because it encourages not only the church and school families to get involved in their community, but also others throughout the area to share that passion.

“The big thing is, if we all do a little bit, then a whole lot can be done,” she said.

Pruitt said because there are so many people active in Team Trinity it doesn’t put a lot of stress on those helping out.

“The biggest challenge for school families is not to overload them, which can happen to everyone,” she said. “There’s always a lot going on and it can be draining for parents to be here and there. It’s hard. Every school and church runs into that. However, with Team Trinity, it’s refreshing because there are so many people involved and want this to succeed.”

Pruitt said the goals of Team Trinity has led to members stepping up.

“Members of our men’s group decorated the tree at The Depot for the Evergreen Festival,” she said. “A couple of them saw it last year and thought it was a little underwhelming. By working with Thrivent Financial for Lutherans, they were able to see a need for the community and decided to do something about it.”

Another thing going for Team Trinity has been the popularity of their movie nights.

“We only need a handful of people for volunteers for something like this that is open to everyone,” she said. “As far as I know, something like this doesn’t exist in this area.”

The upcoming Classic Christmas movie night includes a showing of “It’s a Wonderful Life,” and will be from 6 to 9 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 2.

Pruitt said they are encouraging movie night attendees to bring a new, unwrapped gift to help the Salvation Army for its toy drive in its four-county service area.

“For us, it’s outreach, charity and fun,” she said. “We’re putting it all together in one event.”

Pruitt said the initiative is part of a whole new attitude at the church and school.

“There’s been a lot of changes in such a short amount of time,” she said. “We have a new pastor for the church and a new principal at the school. You can really feel the energy in the church and school. Our school numbers are up and church attendance is up.”

Pruitt said she hopes the Team Trinity concept catches on with more people in Reed City and the area.

“We hope to bring people in the community closer together,” she said. “We look for ways to help out others and be recognizable in the community.

“Team Trinity symbolizes honor and service and community,” she added. “There is an endless list of opportunities if you look for them.”