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LUTHERANS SEEK LARGER LAYTON ROLE

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The congregation at Trinity Lutheran Church in Layton is stepping back and taking a look at itself, preparing for a wider role in the community under the leadership of Pastor Paul McComack.

"We're reorganizing for a greater ministry in the future. We're looking to make an impact on the community for Christ," said the Rev. McComack. "Every member of the congregation will have a meaningful role in that."The congregation is looking at how it is organized, the roles each member plays in the church and ways it can reach out into the community, he said.

Outreach ministry work is not new to the church, which comprises about 400 members.

Its youth group annually goes on a service mission, in the past working in east Los Angeles and Mexico. This summer's mission will take the youths to Los Angeles to repair the homes of elderly earthquake victims, then link up with another youth group to build a home for a family in Mexico.

"I like working with the young people. I spend a lot of time working with kids. It's adventure with significance," said the Rev. McComack, who first wanted to be a teacher, then switched to the ministry.

"I was in school studying to be a teacher but those doors closed and the window to the ministry opened for me," he said. After graduating from Concordia Theological Seminary in Ft. Wayne, Ind., he served a congregation in Colorado and then came to Trinity in Layton 2 1/2 years ago.

The congregation is affiliated with the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod, one of the more conservative of the Lutheran organizations.

His congregation is made up of a core of permanent members from central and north Davis County and a number of military families from Hill Air Force Base.

"Our membership numbers are pretty stable, but we have a turnover as the families transfer in and out. We always have a lot of new members, but we also have a lot leaving," the Rev. McComack said.

One area of impact for the church is parochial education.

Trinity currently offers a preschool for 3- and 4-year-olds and is registering older children to start a kindergarten class this fall. The church has an education wing with classrooms that could house several other grades, which may happen in the future as the church assesses community support for a school.

Through its other youth and adult organizations, the church is involved in a variety of other community service projects, ranging from the Ogden rescue mission to household chores for the elderly.