Pastor's Blog

675 East Algonquin Road  Des Plaines, IL 60016  ​(847) 827-6656

Pastor's Blog


by Interim Pastor Kim Beckmann on 04/03/19

I have touched Golgotha, the rock on which Jesus is said to have been crucified. I’ve been reminded about this journey since Diane Bermann and John Stoffregen returned from their trip to the Holy Land. In my experience, you go to Jerusalem thinking you’ll walk in the footsteps of Jesus. The reality is that Jerusalem is not America of the 21stcentury, not the city streets I walk. But it’s not 1stcentury Palestine, either. So despite the one church of the Ascension that claims to have a plaster cast of the last footfall of Jesus stepping off the earth until he comes again, I didn’t gain that sense I expected that I was walking as Jesus walked.But I did feel a powerful sense of walking with people of faith over the millennia, people like me seeking a closer walk with Jesus, pilgrims who had come to Jerusalem with deep devotion and a longing to share in Christ’s life, the journey to the cross. In the church of the Holy Sepulchre, where you can come to touch Golgotha, there are perhaps thousands of what are called “pilgrim crosses” painstakingly etched into huge stones. I found myself touched by these marks of devotion, the marks left by centuries of people of faith bearing witness to a desire to follow Jesus in the way of the cross. The pilgrimage journey with the people of faith brought me closer to Jesus and changed the way I think about walking as Jesus walked. Such walking isn’t about a place, but about a cross-etched life. This season in the year of grace takes each of us deeper into the journey to Jerusalem and to a pilgrimage to the cross on our way to new life and the feast of Easter. Lent has called us into a time of discipline to struggle against everything that leads us away from the love of God and neighbor, preparing us in this strange way of giving up illusions about ourselves, making sacrifice, and engaging in steps toward reconciliation with others for renewal of life. Together we too may labor on our cross “carving”, our witness and act of devotion that we too have come with those over the ages who have sought to walk with Jesus in the cross-shaped way of life. We have expanded our range of prayer on Wednesdays, including sung prayer. Our carving is also expressed in our cross-in-a-square faith-forming liturgical art for the season. In this or other ways, I hope that everyone has an opportunity to deepen their journey in this prayerful wrestling with the shape of our life in God. This Holy Week we make our sanctuary the city of Jerusalem. We will come there waving palms and participate in the greatest story ever told of Jesus’ Passion. On Maundy Thursday we will share an act of love by sharing Holy Communion with one another. And on Good Friday, on the cross, Jesus practices the ultimate vulnerability, revealing the way of risky, beautiful, truth-telling, sacrificial discipleship that is a life of love. On Easter, we come to celebrate love arisen. Blessings as you continue this discipleship walk with Jesus and the faithful through lent and Holy Week to the joy of Easter’s feast.

Interim Pastor Kim Beckmann

A Christmas Message from Pastor Kim Beckmann

by Interim Pastor Kim Beckmann on 12/12/18

Melina Lopez would sit on the altar steps, chin cupped in her hand, gazing into the manger.  I’ve never seen a child so still on Christmas Eve.  It was just a doll with unruly synthetic  hair, wrapped into a worn receiving blanket, dropped into the matted hay.  But for Melina it was baby Jesus, and she adored him. 

When I was a child, I learned that same still wonder of finding Jesus in Luke, chapter two.  Later it was attributed to my poor eyesight, but I would lay my cheek right in the book to read those breathless words at the heart of Christmas:  “And they found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger.”  Cheek cradled in the words, I learned to love Jesus.

I still have this story memorized in King James’ version.  It got to me.  And Melina’s pure adoration of a swaddled child, a Jesus with untameable hair who loves us and the world with such abandon that he leaves heaven to come to us and live with us on earth, stays with me.

This Christmas as we prepare for the hope, peace, joy and love Jesus brings, you are invited to pull up a seat next to Melina to receive this gift of wonder in the Christ Child. With the children of our congregation we will “lay down the baby Jesus” in the manger. But Jesus will not just lay there sweetly.  He will sneak into our hearts and dwell there, and walk with us into the world.  He will change our lives.

Join us as we breathe deeply of the scent of new mown hay and newborn baby, as gaze together into the manger to see this thing which has come to pass, sing to one another of this good news of great joy for all peoples, then “Go Tell it on the Mountain”!

Christmas Eve Worship

4:00 pm  Festival Candlelight Communion with Carols   

10:30 pm Festival Candlelight Communion with Carols

Join us for special pre-service music at 3:45 pm and 10:15 pm

Christmas Day Worship

11 am  Christmas Day Worship with Holy Communion

More about Trinity's Interim Pastor

by Interim Pastor Kim Beckmann on 12/04/18

Dr. Beckmann was born in New York City. Her parents (and grandparents) were church workers in the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod. Dr. Beckmann's own first call was as a 4th grade teacher in a Lutheran school in Queens and following that she worked for Lutheran World Relief as a secretary in the offices in Manhattan.


When Dr. Beckmann discovered that women were being ordained in other Lutheran church bodies, she left the Big Apple to attend the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago, in Hyde Park. She met her husband, Fred Kinsey, at seminary. They served a 20 year ministry together in the wilds of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula where Dr.

Beckmann also worked toward and received her doctorate in preaching from LSTC. Dr. Beckmann has also served at ELCA Churchwide Organization here in Chicago as Director for the national program of candidacy and two interim positions at the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago. She has served ten interim ministries in Metro Chicago and enjoys seeing how congregations prepare themselves and leadership for mission. She is enjoying seeing how disciples answer God’s call as she serves among God’s people in Des Plaines! She looks forward to getting to know the people of Trinity, hearing our stories and how God has called us. Dr. Beckmann can be contacted at the church office: (847) 827-6656. Her church email is pastor-

Thanksgiving 2018

by Interim Pastor Kim Beckmann on 11/11/18

When I was growing up, my family prayed before dinner. But “twice blessed”, we also couldn’t leave the table until we had given thanks AFTER we’d eaten as well. Our after-meal prayer was this:

“We thank the Lord for all the food, for life, and health and every good. Amen.”

At the “Amen” our poodle, Jacques, would join in with a loud bark. He knew that it was his turn to eat. Jacques joined in the thanksgiving for all good things, even if, in his case, it was Gainesburgers!

There is a lot to give thanks for this year.

All creatures, great and small, are invited into thanksgiving for what God does for us, how God provides for us, how God invites us into expressing that thanksgiving in our generous living and generous sharing with those around us.

There’s a lot to give thanks for this year. We are more than blessed!

Join us for Thanksgiving worship on Sunday, November 18th at 9:30 am
We will sing harvest and thanksgiving hymns and bless holiday pantry items for our neighbors

God is good! God has blessed us with this year! Let us give thanks.

The Rev. Dr. Kim Beckmann, interim pastor
Trinity Lutheran Church

The Rev. Dr.  Kim Beckmann, Interim Pastor

675 East Algonquin Road  Des Plaines, IL 60016  ​(847) 827-6656
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