“Whatever your interests are, Transfiguration offers many opportunities to deepen your faith and grow in community with God’s people.”
In 2008, my husband Brian and I had just gotten married and graduated from Oberlin College. We were using our “honeymoon” to participate in a summer opera program in Italy, where we were both in a production of The Marriage of Figaro before moving back to Dallas in the fall for me to start graduate work at SMU. One day, as I was sitting in an internet cafe in Arezzo, Italy, I saw an email with a job announcement for a soprano section leader at Church of the Transfiguration. I was certain that the job would be taken by the time we got back to the States and completed our move to Dallas, but I decided to give Joel Martinson a call anyway. After a conversation about Early Music and choral singing, I agreed to come over for an audition. The rest, as they say, is history.
On my first Sunday at the church, I couldn’t have been more impressed with the music and worship experience, as well as the welcoming spirit of everyone I met. I gushed about the magnificent choir to Brian when I got home, and brought him along the following week. I remember catching his eye mid-service, and I knew that both of us were thinking that this was where we were meant to be. Not long after that, we were “Dingwalled” (a verb meaning to be joyfully invited to join the church as full members by Ellen Dingwall, Minister of Congregational Life and Outreach).
After we began attending both Sunday services regularly, we began to attend Young Adult events like the Christmas party, Superbowl party, and Newcomer Barbecue. We also helped to lead hymns for Evening Prayer, and enjoyed the fellowship with friends that followed. Getting involved in more of the programs allowed us to meet more Transfiguration members and enhance existing friendships. These friendships drew us deeper into the Transfiguration community, and to this day continue to be a primary reason that this church is so special to us.
Another reason we love Transfiguration is the intentional inclusion of children in church life. I am so grateful that children are considered full members of our church, and that their needs are considered for programming and worship. It is apparent that the classes and programs offered are not merely afterthoughts, but true Christian formation. Most Sundays, our sons, James (5) and Paul (2), may be seen racing down the hallways, truly feeling at home in this space. You might see one or both of them in the choir loft, sometimes in the arms of one of their Godparents, Joel Martinson and David Reece. Observing their inclusion in the Eucharist is also an indescribably joyful experience. The way they enthusiastically participate as they receive the life-giving body and blood of Jesus teaches me that this is the proper reaction to sharing in the Eucharist! It is a testament to the spirit of Transfiguration that the priests and Eucharistic Ministers always seem just as excited to offer the host and chalice as our children are to receive them. We are also a foster family, and have been so grateful that when we bring a new member of our family to Transfiguration, they too are included without hesitation.
The fellowship and diversity of personalities amongst parishioners, clergy, and staff make it difficult to be uninvolved at the Fig. Although Brian and I are not necessarily extroverts, people are so friendly, that I have never felt uncomfortable going to an event that interested me. We have at times participated in everything from women’s book club discussions, to events like the EMF fish fry/silent auction, youth garage sale, and the iParent chili cook-off (still trying to reclaim our winning turkey chili title!). Whatever your interests are, Transfiguration offers many opportunities to deepen your faith and grow in community with God’s people. We know that God has put us in this place for a reason, and we hope to share our love of God and this church with everyone we meet.