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Graces of the Ignatian Year

Linda Gray speaks during the April 2 “Pilgrimage to Remember our Forgotten Black Parishioners.”

As the Ignatian Year comes to a close on the Feast of St. Ignatius (July 31), we look back on our celebrations and notice the moments that moved us to “see all things new in Christ.”

For many parishioners, the “Welcome Back” ministry fair in September was our first return to in-person Mass since the beginning of the pandemic. Amidst our joy at being together again in person, we came together to acknowledge grief prompted by loss. A team of Redemptorists led us in an Ignatian Year Day of Prayer in November. One participant reflected, “Today I was invited to view brokenness as holy, which is a new way of seeing for me.”

Throughout the year, the Women Who Stay program invited participants to see things new in Christ through the voices of women. One attendee shared, “The series...helped give voice to thoughts previously not articulated and changed my paradigm of women’s role in the Church.”

Trinity Faith Sharing Groups met throughout the year. One parishioner shared about their experience, “I see my being a Catholic and a Trinity parishioner now much more as being a part of a community, whereas I used to consider my faith as something personal that I hesitated to share with others.”

Members of the Green Team inspired the Parish to go solar, the first parish in Washington to do so. The Green Ministry Fair showcased the many ways parishioners can live intentionally and reduce their consumption and dependence on fossil fuels. Graces that unfolded include the patience of waiting for change and gratitude for all the ways we are sustained by our Mother Earth.

At the core of the Ignatian Year has been God’s invitation to deeper conversion and transformation. At the fall Young Adult Community retreat, YACs reflected on their own “cannonball moments.” After the Setting Captives Free: Racism, You and I and God’s Liberating Grace retreat in Lent, participants reflected, “The slow transformation, or really opening of my eyes and heart, has been interior work in the context of prayer... The retreat and its resources helped me realize my complicity in racism which I never had understood before.”

In March, we hosted Fr. Bryan Massingale, who challenged and inspired us to see and respond to the dangers that White nationalism and racism pose to the LGBTQ community and beyond.

In the spring, two pilgrimages formed a high point of the year. Twenty-two pilgrims joined Fr. Gillespie on a journey to Spain and Rome in the footsteps of St. Ignatius. Among many moments, we were moved by visiting the very place where Ignatius recovered from his cannonball injury and first experienced God opening his eyes to see all things new in Christ.

Here in Washington, some 50 parishioners and guests gathered for a pilgrimage to remember our forgotten Black parishioners. Journeying from Holy Rood Cemetery to Holy Trinity, pilgrims reflected on our history and, through prayer, connected with the experiences

of our Black forebears. Linda Gray, a descendent of Black parishioners who left Trinity almost 100 years ago, expressed gratitude that today’s Trinity parishioners are acknowledging the segregation and discrimination practiced by the parish in the past.

God has blessed us with many gifts this year and is opening our eyes to see all things new in Christ. May the graces we have received continue to bear fruit in our parish community and the world!


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