A Match Made in Heaven…

Trinity Episcopal Cathedral

It was 2010.  Trinity Cathedral Day School had just closed it’s doors….there was a horrific story in the news in Trenton.  A young girl had pimped her sister into what became a gang rape in a nearby apartment complex.  There was a young man with a vision.

Carl Clark, a young man who had grown up in UrbanPromise Camden with Bruce Main, founder of UrbanPromise in Camden, was now living in Trenton.  Carl was troubled by this event and the violence he saw in the City. His vision was to start an UrbanPromise program in Trenton and this event cemented his resolve. Carl was in touch with Bruce Main to promote his idea and find a place for the program.  Bruce supported his vision and contacted Phyllis Jones, a longtime supporter of UrbanPromise Camden, and then CFO of the Episcopal Diocese of NJ with the idea and problem.  Together, they talked with then Bishop George Counsell, who embraced the idea and the Urban Promise Trenton program. With the support of a relatively new Dean at the Cathedral, Rene Rory John, Urban Promise Trenton took up residence at Trinity Cathedral.

A true partnership benefits both parties.  

Kids having summer fun in the Bagott Room.

The Cathedral is an anchor in a diverse neighborhood of single-family dwellings, row homes, duplexes, and high rises. There are many children. Public transportation is available.  Schools of all shapes and sizes are walk-able from the Cathedral. With the closing of the Day School there were five vacant classrooms (except for Saturday mornings). A partnership with UrbanPromise Trenton provides, yet another way for the Cathedral open its doors to the neighborhood, year-round, with a meaningful program for families, and safe place for its children.

UrbanPromise’s mission is to provide growth opportunities for Trenton youth in the areas of leadership, academics, life skills, and the Christian faith.  What better place than in a church with a permanent address for its home office? There are five vacant classrooms, easy access and available parking for its staff, visitors, and volunteers, access to public transportation, kitchen facilities, recreational space inside and out, a performance venue, and security and maintenance for all. It truly is a match made in heaven!

This post written by UPT’s long-time volunteer Volunteer Coordinator and, lifetime Trinity Cathedral member, Georgia Koenig. She has been with UPT since the very first day and continues to positively impact the lives of everyone who is part of UPT!

Georgia Koenig and Elyse Smith at RiseUPTrenton 2019.

Trinity Cathedral will receive UPT’s Inaugural Sunflower Award at our Attitude of Gratitude Volunteer Recognition Event on November 3, 2019. This award is given to organizations or persons who have served as a Promise Partner for an extended period.  As UPT prepares to celebrate it’s 10th Anniversary, we want to honor our “home” at Trinity Cathedral.   The staff,  (Dean John, Patrice D’Angelo, Al Shaw and Michael “PJ” Pettijohn) , as well as the entire faith family at Trinity Cathedral, make us feel welcome day after day. We are grateful beyond measure!

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