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Trinity Episcopal: rising to the challenge

A place where there’s an attempt to find space for everyone’s gifts

Meg Decker
Meg Decker

Trinity Episcopal Church

  • Contact: 845 Chestnut St., Escondido 760-743-1629 www.trinityescondido.org
  • Membership: 200
  • Neighborhood: Escondido
  • Pastor: Rector Meg Decker  
  • Age: 58
  • Born: Reno, NV
  • Formation: University of Nevada-Reno; Graduate Theological Union-Church Divinity School of the Pacific, Berkeley
  • Years Ordained: 30

San Diego Reader: What is your main concern as a member of the clergy?

Pastor Meg Decker: In our world, religion by now is getting a bad name because it’s easy for it to be distorted into a self-centered and superstitious way of managing life. Our world, our society, everyone is tossing faith out as something that is not good for life or necessary for human flourishing. It worries me that faith and religion are being tossed out – or being distorted into something that should be tossed out. The faith shouldn’t be a holding onto the past and never changing, but a way of moving into the future – a good future for everyone.

SDR: What is the mission of your church?

PD: Trinity’s mission is to bring Christ to the people and the people to Christ. I suppose any church could go with that sort of thing. But what makes Trinity unique is that it is a place where there’s an attempt to find space for everyone’s gifts. For example, we try different spiritual exercises, different ways of worship, grounded in the Episcopal traditions and style. But there’s space for everyone to offer things, and that’s what we try to emphasize. It’s a little harder now with COVID, but that’s our intent. COVID has turned everything upside down, but I think Trinity has risen to the challenge in an amazing way. In the way we tell the gospel story, we want it to be different from the churches that say, “Are you saved?” We emphasize the sacred and community, and we’re rational and relevant. All those things we managed to live out in COVID, so it has not changed our identity – but we did a good job of moving all that into a more diverse online platform…. We formed a community even if we can’t see each other; so it’s a way of maintaining community but in a completely different way.

SDR: Where’s the strangest place you found God?

PD: My most surprising pathway to God was when I got divorced. Something like that is obviously traumatic and not something you choose…. It was definitely a difficult time but also a holy time of being called out of the mess my life had become and into something whole and life-giving that allowed me to serve the vision of God and to be a whole person in that way.

SDR: Where do you go when you die?

PD: I believe we go into God’s presence, we are beloved of God, and anything God loves is not lost. So we will be with God, but what that means exactly, what that looks like, what are particular identity will be, I don’t know because I don’t think we can know. But I do trust that I belong to God, and that I will be held in his good will…. Now, will everyone be in God’s presence, will everyone go to heaven? I don’t know for sure because you do have the reality that probably some people have rejected that gift, not in the sense of creeds and statements of faith, but rejected that gift of love and life by living lies that are abhorrent and vicious.… Then again grace can manage to overcome all that. I don’t know. God has all eternity to work these things out. So maybe.

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Meg Decker
Meg Decker

Trinity Episcopal Church

  • Contact: 845 Chestnut St., Escondido 760-743-1629 www.trinityescondido.org
  • Membership: 200
  • Neighborhood: Escondido
  • Pastor: Rector Meg Decker  
  • Age: 58
  • Born: Reno, NV
  • Formation: University of Nevada-Reno; Graduate Theological Union-Church Divinity School of the Pacific, Berkeley
  • Years Ordained: 30

San Diego Reader: What is your main concern as a member of the clergy?

Pastor Meg Decker: In our world, religion by now is getting a bad name because it’s easy for it to be distorted into a self-centered and superstitious way of managing life. Our world, our society, everyone is tossing faith out as something that is not good for life or necessary for human flourishing. It worries me that faith and religion are being tossed out – or being distorted into something that should be tossed out. The faith shouldn’t be a holding onto the past and never changing, but a way of moving into the future – a good future for everyone.

SDR: What is the mission of your church?

PD: Trinity’s mission is to bring Christ to the people and the people to Christ. I suppose any church could go with that sort of thing. But what makes Trinity unique is that it is a place where there’s an attempt to find space for everyone’s gifts. For example, we try different spiritual exercises, different ways of worship, grounded in the Episcopal traditions and style. But there’s space for everyone to offer things, and that’s what we try to emphasize. It’s a little harder now with COVID, but that’s our intent. COVID has turned everything upside down, but I think Trinity has risen to the challenge in an amazing way. In the way we tell the gospel story, we want it to be different from the churches that say, “Are you saved?” We emphasize the sacred and community, and we’re rational and relevant. All those things we managed to live out in COVID, so it has not changed our identity – but we did a good job of moving all that into a more diverse online platform…. We formed a community even if we can’t see each other; so it’s a way of maintaining community but in a completely different way.

SDR: Where’s the strangest place you found God?

PD: My most surprising pathway to God was when I got divorced. Something like that is obviously traumatic and not something you choose…. It was definitely a difficult time but also a holy time of being called out of the mess my life had become and into something whole and life-giving that allowed me to serve the vision of God and to be a whole person in that way.

SDR: Where do you go when you die?

PD: I believe we go into God’s presence, we are beloved of God, and anything God loves is not lost. So we will be with God, but what that means exactly, what that looks like, what are particular identity will be, I don’t know because I don’t think we can know. But I do trust that I belong to God, and that I will be held in his good will…. Now, will everyone be in God’s presence, will everyone go to heaven? I don’t know for sure because you do have the reality that probably some people have rejected that gift, not in the sense of creeds and statements of faith, but rejected that gift of love and life by living lies that are abhorrent and vicious.… Then again grace can manage to overcome all that. I don’t know. God has all eternity to work these things out. So maybe.

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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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