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What Have You Learned?

The Rev. Deacon Lauren Holder is Senior Program Officer for Community Engagement. She joined Trinity in July 2015, and she will be ordained to the priesthood on January 17, 2015 at Trinity Church. 

THE ROLE OF THE DEACON is to serve. If you are a geek like me and enjoy studying Greek, the term deacon is derived from diakonos, which can mean servant or waitstaff. As a deacon, I actually get to set the table. But a deacon’s service is service is not limited to the table. The deacon’s vocation is to serve all people, and the poor especially.

AS A TRANSITIONAL DEACON, I only get to claim the title “deacon” for the six months before I am ordained a priest on January 17th. However, the call of the deacon will always abide in the fabric of my vocation and will forever be what I was first ordained to.

COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT REQUIRES listening, flexibility, time, and a mixture of intentionality and whim.

WHILE IN WEST AFRICA I ate a lot of delicious food that I didn’t think was delicious until I had lived there at least three months. I also danced a lot in worship.

I’M LOOKING FORWARD TO MY ORDINATION TO THE PRIESTHOOD because I've been waiting and preparing for both the moment of ordination and the vocation of the priesthood for years and years. Irenaeus said, “The glory of God is the human being fully alive.” For me, to be ordained a priest is to be fully alive.

RUNNING HELPS me clear my head and listen to God.

WHAT SURPRISES ME ABOUT TRINITY is how much I can be present during worship. The vergers and the acolytes and the sound team and the musicians—all the many, many parts that make Trinity’s worship possible—also make it possible for me to just be, without worrying about every detail. It is such a joy to worship during worship rather than thinking or planning during worship. I love it.

WHEN I PREACH I pray throughout my entire sermon. And sometimes I get very excited—those are my favorite sermons—when the Gospel feels like it could shoot straight out of my heart and mouth.

OUR COMMUNITY CAN SERVE OUR NEIGHBORS by figuring out what we can do well together and focusing on that, rather than trying to do it all.

BECAUSE MY HUSBAND DOES TELEVISION NEWS I am a more grounded person—Jay is always my reality check. It also makes for an interesting schedule at home, as I stay up very late to see him after work and try to sleep in late to make up for it. We are morning people living in a night owl’s world.

THE CONGREGATION OF TRINITY has shown me compassion and love—and quickly too. The people are the absolute best part of Trinity, alongside the people’s worship!

LIVING IN NEW YORK CITY is an adventure every day.

I’M LOOKING FORWARD TO meeting our first child when s/he arrives this summer and learning how to be parents, all with the love and support of our Trinity community!

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