Meet Member Toni Noakes
What brought you to Trinity? I was baptized as an infant in the Bay City area of Michigan. My mother's side of the family were very staunch LCMS members going back many generations. (My father was a Christian and joined the LCMS when he married my mother.) As a young adult, I was active in my congregation and introduced to the LWML as a Young Woman Representative at the national level. That experience, along with my upbringing, has served to encourage my faith throughout my adult years.
I married my husband, Lewis, just over 25 years ago. While he was a Christian and had been raised in a different Christian Protestant faith, we discussed church attendance - and he agreed to attend the LCMS with me and support education in this faith with our family.
What groups or activities have you been involved in since becoming a member? Throughout my adult life, I have been active in the LWML in all of the congregations I have been a member of. (Due to my work, we have moved within Michigan a few times.) When my daughter began school, I also became a Girl Scout leader, and that continues to be a rewarding experience for our family and it has allowed us to reach out to others with our faith.
I have volunteered in several positions through Thrivent, at some churches have held a leadership role, and taught Sunday School and VBS.
I work full-time for Consumers Energy, and serve on a "storm team" and am one of the individuals that can be called to assist when individuals are without power. This means that my work schedule goes beyond the standard work hours.
Interesting Memories? I have lived in a number of communities within Michigan and even for some period of time outside of Michigan. I have been a member of an LCMS church throughout - some with schools and some without. Consequently, I have had the opportunity to compare processes and experiences with differing ministries. I have also seen a number struggle with meeting the needs of members and the community. I can say that congregations with a strong communication feedback loop with their members seem to have strong relationships that support more of a "family" or "community" atmosphere that really strengthened my faith.