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Epiphany Forum Series: The Wonderfully Ordinary Household of God

December 14, 2023

The Wonderfully Ordinary Household of God  

Sundays, 1/7 through 2/4, 11:15 am, Lloyd Forum or Church

Beginning with an underwhelming birth locale amid unexpected visitors, the season of Epiphany is all about recognizing Jesus in the ordinariness of our incarnate world. While Christmas serves as an extraordinary moment to gather and welcome the newborn savior, we are also mindful that the incarnation (God made human) story didn’t happen just once and for all. Jesus’ birth meant that all of our human-ness was to be an acceptable and possibly dwelling for God—in spite of all of our ‘us-ness’, Jesus became part of the human family.  


The season of Epiphany invites Christians to recognize, in ourselves, our neighborhoods and our communities, how God dwells among us here and now. We consider the Church to be a household of the faithful—a blended family of the highest degree—and so our forums this season will point to the varied natures and iterations of this Household of God: who are we, how do we live together, where do we live, how do we relate to one another not only as neighbors, but as members of the household. As anyone who has lived with other humans before knows, all of these questions beg of us some soul searching and values-assessing.  


We open the season with our whole community invited to brunch to celebrate not only the baptisms of our newest members into the household of God on the 7th, but to welcome again the Wise Ones who came seeking Jesus and found him in the most ordinary of places and families. We then turn to the practical life of the household, understanding better how ‘real life’ was in the time of Paul, specifically in Ephesos. The Rev. Dr. Katherine Shaner will return on Jan. 14 to present on the ‘Household in Ephesos’-- when scripture speaks of ‘household’, both the historical and theological frameworks are meant to go hand in hand.  


Once we welcome and look back, we are reminded in our January 21st forum that no family, no household, is entirely by itself. We are members of a larger family, bound by choice and tradition to one another, and understanding those family trees and how we frame our lives not only as ‘Trinity’ but as ‘a parish of the Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts’. We are delighted to welcome the Rev. Canon Gregory Perez, our Regional Canon, to join both our worship and our forum on this date. 


Just as we organize our life within our larger family and community, we organize the way we live as members of the same household and how many people get many things done. On January 28, we will present on the work and organization of the Ministry Council, the vehicle through which we continually raise up lay ministries, outreach and care for all that God has given to us.


Finally, we have been given a deep and abiding gift in the shape of the building in which we worship and connect. Not only is the building a profound connection to the City of Boston and the community of Copley Square, but it holds memories and history as part of its walls, windows and its very arrangement. Join for an overview of the history of how the space has made a mark on the worship and community over the past 150 years, and then join Trinity Church Tour Guides on Feb. 4 to look at aspects of our building which tell stories about who we are and where we come from.    


1/7: Epiphany Brunch at 11:15 am, with the arrival of the Three Wise Ones  


1/14: “The Household in Ephesos”,  led by the Rev. Dr. Katherine Shaner. 

This Forum will be livestreamed to trinitychurchboston.org/live-worship. You can also check out the Rev. Dr. Shaner’s previous Forum at Trinity on Nov. 12, 2023, in which she explored ‘Troubling Texts: Ephesians in Place and Space’, at trinitychurchboston.org/blog.


1/21: A Longer Table, and an Extended Family: Our Church, our Diocese, with the Rev. Canon Gregory Perez, Canon for the Central Region of the Diocese of Massachusetts  


1/28: Our Household Life Together: Trinity’s Ministry Council 

This Forum will be livestreamed to trinitychurchboston.org/live-worship 

2/4: A Second Look: Houses of Worship, Households of Faith