Trinity Lutheran women’s group has a long history of service |

Trinity Lutheran women’s group has a long history of service

by Nancy Hamlett

Some version of the Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Ladies (TELL) has been in the Carson Valley since the late 1800s, but according to Linda Reid, one of the co-presidents, the organization has undertaken various forms over the years.

“It started out that the ladies met in the afternoons, but as ladies became busier, it switched to nights,” said Reid. “Now even our nights are busy, so TELL has an irregular meeting schedule to accommodate the most number of people.”

An arm of the international Lutheran Women’s Missionary League, the TELL organization provides women with the opportunity for personal and spiritual growth and challenges them to become enriched through Bible study and service to people and the community.

Service to the community takes many forms. Reid said that TELL raises money to benefit others and that members also perform community service.

“During Lent, which lasts six weeks, we provide soup suppers prior to Wednesday night services. It is a freewill offering – in other words, people give what they want for the supper. The funds are matched by Aid Association of Lutherans (AAL) and the Lutheran Brotherhood,” said Reid.

Members of TELL also participate in MITE, a program through the international organization that encourages the collection of spare change.

“They provide us with a little box and we put little change in it, and that little change grows into big donations,” said Reid.

According to Reid, the MITE program raised over $57,000 for their district last year, and in a two-year period, the international organization raised an additional $3 million-plus over district portions. The monies helped fund churches and organizations within the district as well as global concerns.

“It just goes to show how a little bit of found change can contribute to the welfare of everyone,” said Reid. “The money has helped thousands, from the River of Life Families Ministries in Dayton, Nevada, to the Arab Family Ministry Center in the Middle East.”

TELL also participates in at least one Christmastime craft fair per year.

“Because of our fund-raising, for several years we have been able to help the Community Food Closet, Shelter for Abused Women and Children, City of Angels, Hospice of the Valley and child care facilities in the community. We also do things for our church such as (providing) Sunday school supplies and kitchen items,” said Reid.

Once a year, TELL plans an activity that can benefit anyone in the community. This year, TELL is hosting a program, “Passing on Your Legacy” from AAL, which is one of the nation’s leading fraternal benefit societies. The program focuses on ways to share values and pass on wealth to the people you love by looking first at the spiritual and emotional aspects of the estate planning process.

Passing on Your Legacy will be offered on Feb. 13 at 12:30 p.m. at Trinity Lutheran Church, 1480 Douglas Ave. in Gardnerville. The 60-minute program will discuss a variety of topics, including the financial and emotional costs of not planning, of being fair and just with your wealth and of recognizing the importance of sharing your values.

“This is a non-denominational program. It is for anyone with an interest,” said Reid. She added that participants should bring a sack lunch. Cookies and drinks will be provided by TELL.

Reid and Jan Lemburg are the co-presidents of TELL. According to Reid, sharing the position has worked out well, as both ladies have time constraints. Also serving on the board is Kay Oetting as secretary, Kristi Barsotti as treasurer, Mary Ann Miller, chairman, Ginny Brister, assistant for the Christian Growth committee, and Judy Winter as missionary representative.

TELL is open to Christian women, even if they are not members of the Lutheran Church.

“As a group, we are interested in Bible study, fellowship and activities where we just have fun,” said Reid. “During some times of the year, we may work hard, but it doesn’t seem hard when you are in the company of people you enjoy.”

For more information about Passing on Your Legacy or TELL, call Trinity Lutheran Church at 782-8153, Reid at 782-8210 or Lemburg at 265-3046.