Trinity Stories

Our Church Family Walks with the Reed Family

For the fifth year since her mother died, Trinity City Church member Laurel Reed will participate in the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation Team for Cures 5k Walk/Run in St. Paul.

Laurel’s mother, Ardy Germann, was diagnosed with multiple myeloma in 2008. Multiple myeloma is a cancer that forms in plasma cells, a type of white blood cell, according to the Mayo Clinic website. Multiple Myeloma causes cancer cells to build up in the bone marrow and leaves the body unable to fight infections.

There is no cure.

“It’s not curable, just treatable,” Laurel said. “You can do chemotherapy, or my mom had a stem cell transplant that they can try to give you more time, but it’s kind of like maintenance.”


When Germann was diagnosed, Laurel was a freshman in college. In 2011, Reed moved to Minnesota to help her father take care of her mother.

“One of the medications she was on to fight a fungal infection … one of the side effects caused her to lose her vision, so she was legally blind from that,” Laurel said. “That took away a lot of her independence.”

Laurel and her family also began to attend Trinity City Church in 2011, thanks to her mother’s research.

“My mom was actually the one who found the church online and told my husband, Jack, to go there,” Laurel said. “She was really into finding churches for people and helping them look. She was always up for doing research for people.”

In 2013, Germann died due to multiple myeloma.

“She still had a lot of really good quality of life,” Laurel said. “In those five years of life, she saw all her kids get married and was able to live with it for as long as she did, which was a huge gift and blessing to our family.”


The next year, Laurel and her family did the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation Team for Cures 5k Walk/Run for the first time. The 5k wraps around Lake Phalen in St. Paul.

“We did it the first year after she died,” Laurel said. “My family does it as a way to honor her and raise awareness. The first year, we had six people on our team and last year, we had over 50. It’s grown as a fun thing to do in her honor.”


This year, the 5k is on Sept. 23 at 11 a.m. The overall Twin Cities goal is to raise $250,000 for multiple myeloma research, of which more than $55,000 has been raised. The Ardy Germann team are hoping to raise $10,060 and have raised more than $4,000 so far.

People are able to sign up to participate in the race as part of the Ardy Germann team at The website also has an option to donate for those who aren’t able to participate in the 5k.

Funds raised from the 5k have tripled patient survival, developed 10 new treatments in 10 years and launched more than 60 clinical trials, according to the foundation’s website.

“I wish it wasn’t a thing, or even something we had to do or talk about, but that’s the reality we have in our family,” Laurel said.


Laurel said people who attend Trinity City Church who never ended up meeting her mom have participated in the race in the past.

“It’s really, really awesome,” Laurel said. “That’s been kind of a weird thing that people don’t know that part of who I am. It means a lot that even if they didn’t meet her, they still come and support. It’s really awesome.”

Registration for the race for adults is $35, $15 for children ages 6-17 and $5 for children five years old or younger.

Go to for more information.

By Maggie Stanwood. Stanwood is a multimedia reporter for the Prior Lake American newspaper in Prior Lake, Minnesota.

From 10,000 Lakes to a Skyline of Mountains

Trinity City Church will soon be missing out on a few familiar faces.

Daniel Parks and Annika Parks, who have both volunteered in various positions throughout their time at the church, are moving to Boulder, Colorado soon for Daniel to pursue a doctorate in conducting at the University of Colorado.

“I’m looking forward to living in the mountains or having mountains in the skyline,” Annika said. “And the climate is a bit more stable — not as midwestern crazy.”

Daniel has been the music director for the music team and deacon of music for two years. Annika served as the kitchen coordinator last year and also serves on the music team.

“I have been involved with music ministry since I was about 12 or 13 years old, Daniel said. “I started volunteering with the music team almost immediately. I think the second Sunday we were attending, I introduced myself to the music leader at the time. Annika started helping out in the kitchen not long after and did that for a few years.”

The couple — who have been married for almost eight years — met in high school. Though they attended different high schools, their families attended the same church in Appleton, Wisconsin. Daniel and Annika started dating a few years later, when they were in college.

Daniel and Annika both said they grew up looking to their families as an example of volunteerism, especially in the church.

“I think that’s something that’s modeled in our families and that’s a normal part of our experience was volunteering,” Daniel said.

In 2013, Daniel got a job teaching in River Falls, Wisconsin, so they moved to St. Paul. They found Trinity in its early years after an online search.

“It felt normal to be in a smaller church plant,” Annika said.

Annika is a professional photographer, specializing in wedding, engagement and family photographer. Daniel is a music educator and musician who recently finished up a Master’s program at the University of Minnesota.

While Annika said she’s looking forward to the new topography, Daniel said he’s looking forward to starting his doctoral program in Colorado.

“I love learning and I really enjoy being a student,” Daniel said. “I’m excited to begin my last run of schooling in my life.”

Neither of them work for solely a paycheck, and are passionate about their jobs, Annika said.

“It’s nice to love what you do,” Annika said.

But, the couple will miss the relationships they’ve cultivated through Trinity. Annika said she will miss the family she used to nanny for and Daniel said he will miss the people he’s gotten to know through volunteering at the church.

Both of them also said they’ll miss the tacos at a few of their favorite restaurants, Maya Cuisine and El Taco Riendo, and will have to find a new taco place in Boulder.

By Maggie Stanwood. Stanwood is a multimedia reporter for the Prior Lake American newspaper in Prior Lake, Minnesota.


The FCA House Story

Three years ago, David Melms couldn’t get the idea of a Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA) house near Macalester College in St. Paul out of his head.

Melms, who graduated from Macalester College in 2013, would take prayer walks around his neighborhood and see houses for sale. Melms had been one of the students to start the FCA ministry on campus in spring 2010.

“I would walk by this one house time and time again and it would be for sale and it just sparked something in my mind about, ‘well, how cool would that be if there was a house for the FCA ministry that had somewhat of a legacy to it where I knew that Christians were there year after year and it was a place where people could go chill and have fun too,” Melms said.

The FCA ministry is on college campuses across the country, led by student athletes and coaches working to share the gospel of Jesus Christ.

And so the idea for a campus ministry for Macalester College stayed in Melms’ mind. During his college years, Melms had formed a friendship with Paul Olson, who is a member of the Macalester College Board of Trustees.

Olson had also recognized a need for a Christian ministry on Macalester College.

“They don't formally recognize campus ministries at Macalester, even FCA, though we love and want the best for the campus — so, our good relationships and trust as alumni leads to being welcomed into the athletics department,” Melms said.

Olson approached Melms about two years ago and proposed buying a house to create an intentional student ministry near most of the college campuses in St. Paul.

“(Olson) wanted to take those steps and buy a property near Macalester, but his wife was only wanting it if it would be something intentional like a student ministry, and that’s what they proposed,” Melms said. “I’ve always wanted something like that and I’d been praying for something like that, so it ended up being a yearlong journey to search for the right house.”

The group eventually found a house about a block from Macalester College, with an unfinished basement. Olson made an offer, which was accepted and the first people moved in 2017.

FCA Construction.jpg

In the spring, renovations began on the basement to create a common space for those living in the house. The renovations included a prayer room, a kitchenette, tables for studying, a laundry room and an entertainment area.

The leadership spent six months working on the basement.

“This is all new to us, too, so it’s not that it’s not a good time for a story but the story is just starting to unfold,” Melms said.

The benefits of the house for Christian students are twofold — on one hand, students get face-to-face interaction with other students of faith living in the house, including Melms and his wife, who live upstairs. The other part is that the students have been gifted with a house and so should become disciples on their campus.

“They have this incredible home, because it’s not a college home — it’s a half-million dollar property that has been gifted to them, so it’s not your typical college apartment unit,” Melms said. “So the expectations for living in the house are that you’re excited about growing your faith and you’re excited about growing in a Christian community and you’re wanting to bless your campus with the house that you’ve been given.”


Everything about the house was made possible through the grace of God, Melms said.

“It isn’t really a story about an FCA staff guy or an FCA ministry, but there is just a ton of people that have been really generous in the process and God has just given us a great deal of confidence,” Melms said. “We had a confidence through it all that God is going to do something with this and he’s shown us he’s going to do this.”


This post written by Maggie Stanwood. Stanwood is a multimedia reporter at the Prior Lake American. She also freelances for the White Bear Press Pub and the Elk River Star News. Read more of her writing at this website