• Fr. Guillermo A. Arboleda

Palm Sunday Worship 2021


The Holy Eucharist: Liturgy of the Word

Palm Sunday: The Sunday of the Passion (Year B) March 28, 2021


Watch the Livestream at www.Facebook.com/StMattSav/Live/

Sunday, March 28, at 9:30 a.m. (or anytime afterward)


Preface


We at St. Matthew's Church in Savannah are unable to gather together in person due to the COVID-19 (novel coronavirus) pandemic. Under the guidance of the Episcopal Diocese of Georgia, the Vestry has decided to keep our church building closed for all in-person gatherings.


At 9:30 a.m. on Sunday, I will broadcast the following worship service using Facebook Live at www.Facebook.com/StMattSav. After the service concludes, you can re-watch it at any time. This worship service is designed for for use at home while watching the live stream or reading the prayers when you cannot physically attend worship. Lay people may read the entirety of this service.


In 2021, we have made some technological and liturgical changes to our live stream, in accordance with the latest COVID-19 Safety Guidelines from the Episcopal Diocese of Georgia. All these changes are intended to simplify the production process of these worship videos and comply with those guidelines.

  1. This liturgy will be performed live on Sunday morning as you watch from home, rather than pre-filmed and edited together. In other words, you are looking at a live feed of what we are doing in the church. This means there will be fewer flourishes on the video, but it will look like actually attending church again.

  2. Due to the "live" nature of this video, there will be up to 10 people in the church on Sunday morning. In compliance with the Diocese of Georgia's COVID-19 indoor worship guidelines, we will engage in social distancing, wear masks at all times, and aim to keep the liturgy under 60 minutes.

  3. Most hymns will be shortened (typically to 3 or fewer verses) and some portions of the liturgy that may be sung will be spoken.

May God protect you from this virus and protect the most vulnerable among us. May we be God’s hands and feet of compassion and service to all in need during this time. Amen.


Yours in Christ,

Fr. Guillermo A. Arboleda






The Holy Eucharist: Rite II


The Liturgy of the Palms



Today’s service is a modified version of the special liturgy for Palm Sunday and the Sunday of the Passion. I invite you to go outside and find a leafy branch (whether it’s a palm or any other plant) and bring it inside to hold during our worship.


Opening Sentences

[BCP, p. 270]


Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord.

Peace in heaven and glory in the highest.


Let us pray.


Assist us mercifully with your help, O Lord God of our salvation, that we may enter with joy upon the contemplation of those mighty acts, whereby you have given us life and immortality; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.



The Holy Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ According to St. Mark (11:1-11)

Glory to you, Lord Christ.


When they were approaching Jerusalem, at Bethphage and Bethany, near the Mount of Olives, Jesus sent two of his disciples and said to them, “Go into the village ahead of you, and immediately as you enter it, you will find tied there a colt that has never been ridden; untie it and bring it. If anyone says to you, ‘Why are you doing this?’ just say this, ‘The Lord needs it and will send it back here immediately.’” They went away and found a colt tied near a door, outside in the street. As they were untying it, some of the bystanders said to them, “What are you doing, untying the colt?” They told them what Jesus had said; and they allowed them to take it. Then they brought the colt to Jesus and threw their cloaks on it; and he sat on it. Many people spread their cloaks on the road, and others spread leafy branches that they had cut in the fields. Then those who went ahead and those who followed were shouting,

“Hosanna! Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord! Blessed is the coming kingdom of our ancestor David! Hosanna in the highest heaven!”

Then he entered Jerusalem and went into the temple; and when he had looked around at everything, as it was already late, he went out to Bethany with the twelve.

The Gospel of the Lord.

Praise to you, Lord Christ.



The Blessing of the Palms & Procession

[BCP, p. 271]


The Lord be with you.

And also with you.

Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.

It is right to give him thanks and praise.


It is right to praise you, Almighty God, for the acts of love by which you have redeemed us through your Son Jesus Christ our Lord. On this day he entered the holy city of Jerusalem in triumph, and was proclaimed as King of kings by those who spread their garments and branches of palm along his way. Let these branches be for us signs of his victory, and grant that we who bear them in his name may ever hail him as our King, and follow him in the way that leads to eternal life; who lives and reigns in glory with you and the Holy Spirit, now and forever. Amen.


Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.

Hosanna in the highest.

Let us go forth in peace.

In the name of Christ. Amen.



Hymn #154: All Glory, Laud, and Honor

[Verses 1, 3-4]


REFRAIN:

All glory, laud, and honor

to thee, Redeemer, King!

to whom the lips of children

made sweet hosannas ring.

1. Thou art the King of Israel,

thou David's royal Son,

who in the Lord's Name comest,

the King and Blessed One.

3. The people of the Hebrews

with palms before thee went;

our praise and prayer and anthems

before thee we present.

4. To thee before thy passion

they sang their hymns of praise;

to thee, now high exalted,

our melody we raise.


Words: Theodolph of Orleans, tr. John Mason Neale, alt., Public Domain.

Music: Valet will ich dir geben, melody Melchior Teschner, alt.,; harm. William Henry Monk, Public Domain.

Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE #83962. All rights reserved.



The Liturgy of the Word: The Sunday of the Passion



The Collect of the Day

[BCP, p. 357, 219]

The Lord be with you.

And also with you.

Let us pray:


Almighty and everliving God, in your tender love for the human race you sent your Son our Savior Jesus Christ to take upon him our nature, and to suffer death upon the cross, giving us the example of his great humility: Mercifully grant that we may walk in the way of his suffering, and also share in his resurrection; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.


A Reading from the Book of Isaiah (50:4-9a)

The Lord God has given me the tongue of a teacher,

that I may know how to sustain the weary with a word.

Morning by morning he wakens-- wakens my ear to listen as those who are taught.

The Lord God has opened my ear, and I was not rebellious, I did not turn backward.

I gave my back to those who struck me, and my cheeks to those who pulled out the beard;

I did not hide my face from insult and spitting.

The Lord God helps me; therefore I have not been disgraced;

therefore I have set my face like flint, and I know that I shall not be put to shame; he who vindicates me is near.

Who will contend with me? Let us stand up together.

Who are my adversaries? Let them confront me.

It is the Lord God who helps me; who will declare me guilty?

The Word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God


Psalm 31:9-16

[BCP, p. 623]

Read responsively by half-verse (at the asterisk).

9 Have mercy on me, O Lord, for I am in trouble; * my eye is consumed with sorrow, and also my throat and my belly.

10 For my life is wasted with grief, and my years with sighing; * my strength fails me because of affliction, and my bones are consumed.

11 I have become a reproach to all my enemies and even to my neighbors, a dismay to those of my acquaintance; * when they see me in the street they avoid me.

12 I am forgotten like a dead man, out of mind; * I am as useless as a broken pot.

13 For I have heard the whispering of the crowd; fear is all around; * they put their heads together against me; they plot to take my life.

14 But as for me, I have trusted in you, O Lord. * I have said, "You are my God.

15 My times are in your hand; * rescue me from the hand of my enemies, and from those who persecute me.

16 Make your face to shine upon your servant, * and in your loving-kindness save me."



A Reading from the Letter to the Philippians (2:5-11)

Let the same mind be in you that was in Christ Jesus,

who, though he was in the form of God, did not regard equality with God as something to be exploited,

but emptied himself, taking the form of a slave, being born in human likeness.

And being found in human form, he humbled himself and became obedient to the point of death-- even death on a cross.

Therefore God also highly exalted him and gave him the name that is above every name,

so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bend, in heaven and on earth and under the earth,

and every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.


The Word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God.


The Passion of our Lord Jesus Christ According to St. Mark (15:1-39)


NARRATOR: As soon as it was morning, the chief priests held a consultation with the elders and scribes and the whole council. They bound Jesus, led him away, and handed him over to Pilate. Pilate asked him,


PILATE: "Are you the King of the Jews?"


NARRATOR: He answered him,


JESUS: "You say so."


NARRATOR: Then the chief priests accused him of many things. Pilate asked him again,


PILATE: "Have you no answer? See how many charges they bring against you."


NARRATOR: But Jesus made no further reply, so that Pilate was amazed.

Now at the festival he used to release a prisoner for them, anyone for whom they asked. Now a man called Barabbas was in prison with the rebels who had committed murder during the insurrection. So the crowd came and began to ask Pilate to do for them according to his custom. Then he answered them,


PILATE: "Do you want me to release for you the King of the Jews?"


NARRATOR: For he realized that it was out of jealousy that the chief priests had handed him over. But the chief priests stirred up the crowd to have him release Barabbas for them instead. Pilate spoke to them again,


PILATE: "Then what do you wish me to do with the man you call the King of the Jews?"


NARRATOR: They shouted back,


CROWD: "Crucify him!"


NARRATOR: Pilate asked them,


PILATE: "Why, what evil has he done?"


NARRATOR: But they shouted all the more,


CROWD: "Crucify him!"


NARRATOR: So Pilate, wishing to satisfy the crowd, released Barabbas for them; and after flogging Jesus, he handed him over to be crucified.

Then the soldiers led him into the courtyard of the palace (that is, the governor's headquarters); and they called together the whole cohort. And they clothed him in a purple cloak; and after twisting some thorns into a crown, they put it on him. And they began saluting him,


SOLDIERS: "Hail, King of the Jews!"


NARRATOR: They struck his head with a reed, spat upon him, and knelt down in homage to him. After mocking him, they stripped him of the purple cloak and put his own clothes on him. Then they led him out to crucify him.


At the mention of Golgotha, all stand as able.


They compelled a passer-by, who was coming in from the country, to carry his cross; it was Simon of Cyrene, the father of Alexander and Rufus. Then they brought Jesus to the place called Golgotha (which means the place of a skull). And they offered him wine mixed with myrrh; but he did not take it. And they crucified him, and divided his clothes among them, casting lots to decide what each should take.

It was nine o'clock in the morning when they crucified him. The inscription of the charge against him read, "The King of the Jews." And with him they crucified two bandits, one on his right and one on his left. Those who passed by derided him, shaking their heads and saying,


BYSTANDERS: "Aha! You who would destroy the temple and build it in three days, save yourself, and come down from the cross!"


NARRATOR: In the same way the chief priests, along with the scribes, were also mocking him among themselves and saying,


CHIEF PRIESTS: "He saved others; he cannot save himself. Let the Messiah, the King of Israel, come down from the cross now, so that we may see and believe."


NARRATOR: Those who were crucified with him also taunted him. When it was noon, darkness came over the whole land until three in the afternoon. At three o'clock Jesus cried out with a loud voice,


JESUS: "Eloi, Eloi, lema sabachthani?"


NARRATOR: which means,


JESUS: "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?"


NARRATOR: When some of the bystanders heard it, they said,


BYSTANDERS: "Listen, he is calling for Elijah."


NARRATOR: And someone ran, filled a sponge with sour wine, put it on a stick, and gave it to him to drink, saying,


BYSTANDERS: "Wait, let us see whether Elijah will come to take him down."


NARRATOR: Then Jesus gave a loud cry and breathed his last. And the curtain of the temple was torn in two, from top to bottom. Now when the centurion, who stood facing him, saw that in this way he breathed his last, he said,


CENTURION: "Truly this man was God's Son!"



The Sermon

"Truly This Man Was God's Son" by Fr. Guillermo A. Arboleda


Today is Palm Sunday, also known as the Sunday of the Passion. It’s the beginning of the micro-season of Holy Week, the very end of Lent. This week leads toward Jesus’ Last Supper with his disciples on Thursday, his arrest, crucifixion, and death on Friday, and his resurrection on Easter Sunday morning.


Liturgically, today is the last time we will hear from the Gospel of Mark until after the Feast of Pentecost (basically until June). For the remainder of Holy Week and most of Easter Season, we will hear Gospel stories from the perspective of St. John. We may or may not notice it, but each of the four Gospel writers brings their own point of view to the story of Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection. They each highlight different themes and help us see the meaning of Jesus from different angles.


One of Mark’s clearest themes is that the Cross is absolutely central to Jesus’ life and mission. Counterintuitively, the Crucifixion proves that Jesus is who he says he is. And in its dramatic Passion Narrative, the Gospel of Mark highlights for us again that Jesus is revealed to be God’s Son through his death on the Cross. The whole arc of Mark’s Gospel is summarized in the words of that centurion who stood watch as Jesus suffered and died: “Truly this man was God’s Son” (Mark 15:39).


The centurion’s words come after Jesus has been arrested, beaten, whipped, mocked, sentenced to death, and crucified. Even as Jesus hangs on the cross waiting to die a slow and painful death, Roman soldiers, Jewish chief priests, random passersby, and even the criminals who were crucified alongside him hurl taunts and insults. Only after Jesus cries out to God in agony (confusing his hearers with his native Aramaic language), after breathing his last breath, after the Temple across the valley in Jerusalem had its curtain torn in two, then the centurion declares, “Truly this man was God’s Son” (15:39).


Remember that centurions were Roman soldiers of moderately high rank. They were in charge of units of one hundred men. So this centurion was not Jewish, was not familiar with the stories of Israel we find in the Hebrew Bible. He did not know the words of prophets like Isaiah or Psalmists like David. He did not worship Israel’s God, the God of Abraham, Sarah, Isaac, Rebekah, Jacob, and Jesus. All he knew was what he heard in rumors around Jerusalem and from the trial that morning. This man, Jesus, had a growing following of poor, mostly Jewish peasants, who believed that he was God’s Son and the rightful King of Israel.


The Temple leaders and Governor Pontius Pilate were threatened by his popularity and thought it was best to nip this movement in the bud. They knew the fastest way to convince people that he was no King and no godly messenger was to humiliate, torture, and execute him in public. Kings crucify others, they are not crucified. God’s favored person would never be forced to endure such disgrace and agony. If God truly loved Jesus, God would save him from the Cross, not abandon him there. In the minds of the Roman and Jewish authorities, the Cross was the way to prove to the world that Jesus was absolutely not God’s Son.


But when the centurion sees Jesus die, the Temple rattle and shake, and the sun disappear in the middle of the day, he declares, “Truly this man was God’s Son.” Whether the centurion was being sincere or sarcastic, we learn similar lessons. God is seen in the crucified peoples of the earth, the rejected and the slain, the disdained and the hated. Our God is found wherever people are hurting and God is there to comfort and liberate the oppressed and downtrodden. If the centurion was sincere, then he is learning the same lesson we are. If he was being sarcastic, taunting Jesus one last time at his death, then his hatred and derision prove the lesson.


Human beings can muster up all our hatred, we can destroy and condemn anyone, but we will never quench the life, love, and mercy of God’s Son Jesus Christ. Our hatred can never be stronger than God’s love. We’re talking about the hatred that’s out there in our society, the racism, misogyny, Islamophobia, homophobia, transphobia, and more. But we’re also talking about the hatred that lives in each of our hearts. Even if we have been hated and oppressed, we don’t have license to seek revenge or to pass on our trauma to other marginalized groups. It’s not okay to “punch down” the social ladder just to get a taste of what dominance feels like. Jesus confronts all of our prejudices and disdain for others and shows us on the Cross that God can heal it all. The hatred out there and the hatred that lives in each of us is all consumed by the mercy, justice, and love of the Savior. And that is Good News on Passion Sunday.


As we continue to journey through Lent and Holy Week, I invite you to participate as fully as you can in the prayer and worship services we are offering online. They are a way for us to meditate together on the truth of God’s goodness and love toward us, victims of and participants in so much violence and hate. But God’s love won’t let us go. Even if we die, God will raise us up in power and glory, justice, mercy, and love. This week, let’s follow Jesus, God’s True Crucified Son, to the Cross and the Empty Tomb. Amen.



LEV #30: At The Cross

[Verses 1-3]


1 Alas! and did my Savior bleed,

and did my Sov’reign die?

Would He devote that sacred head

for sinners such as I?


REFRAIN:

At the cross, at the cross, where I first saw the light,

and the burden of my heart rolled away;

it was there by faith I received my sight,

and now I am happy all the day.


2 Was it for crimes that I have done,

He groaned upon the tree?

Amazing pity! Grace unknown!

And love beyond degree! (refrain)


3 Well might the sun in darkness hide,

and shut its glories in;

when God, the mighty maker,

died for His own creature’s sin. (refrain)


Words: Isaac Watts, refrain by Ralph E. Hudson, Public Domain.

Music: Ralph E. Hudson, Public Domain.

Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE #97919. All rights reserved.



The Nicene Creed

[BCP, p. 358]

We believe in one God,

the Father, the Almighty,

maker of heaven and earth,

of all that is, seen and unseen.

We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ,

the only Son of God,

eternally begotten of the Father,

God from God, Light from Light,

true God from true God,

begotten, not made,

of one Being with the Father.

Through him all things were made.

For us and for our salvation

he came down from heaven:

by the power of the Holy Spirit

he became incarnate from the Virgin Mary,

and was made man.

For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate;

he suffered death and was buried.

On the third day he rose again

in accordance with the Scriptures;

he ascended into heaven

and is seated at the right hand of the Father.

He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead,

and his kingdom will have no end.

We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life,

who proceeds from the Father and the Son.

With the Father and the Son he is worshiped and glorified.

He has spoken through the Prophets.

We believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church.

We acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins.

We look for the resurrection of the dead,

and the life of the world to come. Amen.


The Prayers of the People

[Adapted from the Rev. Rick Morley, http://www.rickmorley.com/archives/153]

Celebrant: Christ, we pray that you would hear our prayers, and graft in our minds the same mind that is in you, that we might be vessels of your humility and grace.


Intercessor: Lord Jesus, you emptied yourself, trading in the form of God for the form of a slave; we pray for the Church, and all her people and ministers. Form us into a Church that empties itself for others, and for you.

Lord in your mercy,

Hear our prayer.


Lord Jesus, you were born in human likeness, and found in human form; we pray for the whole human family, for the nations of the earth, and for all who live in the midst of disaster, famine, or terror.

Lord in your mercy,

Hear our prayer.


Lord Jesus, even after humbling yourself in your incarnation, you humbled yourself even to the point of death; we pray for our nation, our leaders, and all the people who live within these borders. Bless us with your humility.

Lord in your mercy,

Hear our prayer.


Lord Jesus your humility and your love for us was so broad and deep, it cost you your life. We pray for those who we love who have died (especially ... ), and as you were highly exalted, may they rest with you in glory.

Lord in your mercy,

Hear our prayer.


In your exaltation, O Lord, you were given the name that is above every name; we pray in your name for those who are poor, those who are hungry, and those who are hurting in any way. Give them your grace.

Lord in your mercy,

Hear our prayer.


We also pray, in your name O Lord, for those who are sick; give them the gift of healing, strength, and life.

Lord in your mercy,

Hear our prayer.


We pray for our Day Care staff, students, and their families, and for the people of our Parish Prayer List: Martha Avery, Zavier Bradley, Myrtle Brow-Hollis, Jacquelyn Bryant, Christine Brown, Genella Chamberlain, Taylor Blue Clemons, Annie Colbert, Ana Columna, Lazola Cope, Alice Dailey, Beryl Dandy, Mark Dashiell, Brittany Dawson, Roland Dixon, Eduardo Espinosa, Imani Ferguson, Ruby Fernandez, Harry Frazier, Yvonne Gentel, Charles Gordon, Amanda Green, Jocelyn Bryant Harden, Loretta Harmond, Marva Harris, Enoch Henderson, Charles E. Hines, Kenneth Howard, Terri Howard, Dale Hundley, Jared Hundley, Tracy Hundley, Milinda James, Alvin Jenkins, Dana Jenkins, David Jones, Frances T. Jones, Lori Jones, Robert L. Jones, Sr., Whitney Kennedy, Leonard Law, Jr., Ralph Lovett, Ryan Lovett, Tammie Lovett, Marcus Marzen, Joan Maty, Craig Maxwell, Sada Maxwell, Altheria Maynard, Carmelita Maynard, Bette Milledge, Hollie Moultrie, Patricia Murry, Russell Nails, Dorothy Neal, Jabbaar Newton, Jameel Newton, Glenzy Payne, Robert Payne, Willie Mae Robinson, Paul Rockwell, Dison Washington Slaughter, James Small, Gwendolyn Smith, Courtney Watts Vista, Ed Vista, Willie Stephens, Lori Ward, Gertrude Washington, and Noel Wheeler.


We give thanks for Jordyn Jones (3/29) and Rashad Taylor, Sr. (4/3) on their birthdays and Fr. Charles and Evalena Hoskins (4/1) on their wedding anniversary.


Lord, in your mercy,

Hear our prayer.


Concluding prayer led by the Celebrant:

You humbled yourself in the manger, and you humbled yourself on the cross; and to you O Lord we bend our knee with those above and those below, to the glory of God the Father. Amen.



The Peace

[BCP, p. 360]


The peace of the Lord be always with you.

And also with you.


The Offertory

[BCP, p. 377]


Giving to St. Matthew's: We know that many people are feeling the economic impact of the COVID-19 crisis. The church is feeling it too. We still need your support to pay our staff, pay our bills, and provide for these online live streams. There are several ways to give, but the simplest are these:

  1. Mail us a check or money order at St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church, 1401 Martin Luther King, Jr., Blvd, Savannah, GA 31415; OR

  2. Make a secure online gift to St. Matthew’s and/or automate future gifts at: https://onrealm.org/StMattSav/-/give/now; OR

  3. Text “stmattsav” to 73256 to make a secure online donation through your phone.

NOTE: Donations made online (#2 or #3) through Realm incur a processing fee of about 2.5%. Please consider adding an additional 2.5% to your online gift to cover these costs.

“If you are offering your gift at the altar, and there remember that your brother or sister has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar and go; first be reconciled to your brother or sister, and then come and offer your gift.”

[Matthew 5:23-24; see BCP, p. 376]

Give online at: https://onrealm.org/StMattSav/-/give/now

LEV #34: He Will Remember Me

[Verses 1-3]


1 When on the cross of Calv’ry

The Lord was crucified;

The mob stood ’round about Him

And mocked until He died.

Two thieves were nailed beside Him

To share the agony,

But one of them cried out to Him,

"O Lord, remember me.”


Refrain:

Will the Lord remember me,

When I am called to go?

When I have crossed death’s chilly sea,

Will He His love there show?

O yes, He heard my feeble cries,

From bondage set me free.

And when I reach the pearly gates

He will remember me.


2 O what a shame to kill Him

There on that rugged cross;

But such a death was needed

To rescue all the lost.

His blood was made a ransom

To set the captives free,

I know that I’m included,

and He will remember me. [Refrain]


3 At His dear feet I’m kneeling.

My sins I now confess;

I bow in deep repentance,

My soul He’ll surely bless.

My blinded eyes He opens

So that the light I see,

And when I reach the pearly gates,

He will remember me. [Refrain]

Words & Music: E. M. Bartlett © 1976 Albert E. Brumley & Sons / SESAC.

All rights reserved.



The Lord’s Prayer

[BCP, p. 364]


And now, as our Savior Christ has taught us, we are bold to say,

Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy Name, thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever and ever. Amen.

The Solemn Prayer Over the People

[The Book of Occasional Services 2018, p. 12]


Let us bow down before the Lord.


Almighty God, we pray you graciously to behold this your family, for whom our Lord Jesus Christ was willing to be betrayed, and given into the hands of sinners, and to suffer death upon the cross; who lives and reigns for ever and ever. Amen.



Parish Announcements

[See below]



The Dismissal

[BCP, p. 366]


Let us go forth in the name of Christ.

Thanks be to God.



Parish Announcements - 3/28/21


A. Holy Week & Easter Schedule: Join us for worship over Facebook Live in Holy Week and Easter. Holy Week begins on March 28 with Palm Sunday and runs through April 4 wtih Easter Day. See below for highlights and click on the following link for the full schedule: https://www.stmattsav.org/post/holy-week-easter-2021-worship-schedule


Maundy Thursday (4/1/21)

Good Friday (4/2/21)

  • 12:00 noon   Good Friday Liturgy and Emptying of the Tabernacle (Facebook)

  • 1:00 PM - 3:00 PM   Fr. Arboleda available for Private Confession (phone or video call only; email FrGAA@StMattSav.org to schedule an appointment)

  • 5:00 PM   Evening Prayer (Zoom & Facebook)

Easter Day (4/4/21) 

  • 6:30 AM   Sunrise Easter Vigil (Facebook)

  • 9:30 AM Easter Holy Communion (Facebook)

  • 10:30 AM - 12:00 Noon Drive-Thru Holy Communion in St. Matthew's Parking Lot (behind the church building at the corner of Burroughs St & West Anderson St)


B. In-Person Worship Survey Results: The Rector, Vestry, and COVID-19 Task Force wish to thank the members of St. Matthew's for participating in our In-Person Worship Survey this month. We received 45 anonymous responses (with some responders speaking for entire households).


Some Highlights from the Survey:

  • 80% of responders "attend" St. Matthew's online worship at least monthly.

  • 56% of responders have participated in online Christian Education offerings.

  • Only 39% of responders indicated that they would attend in-person worship under the Vestry's Safety Guidelines "as soon as possible."

  • All responders affirmed the Vestry's Safety Guidelines, and many urged greater patience until a higher percentage of the community has been fully vaccinated against the novel coronavirus.

  • 85% of responders have either already received a COVID-19 vaccination or intend to get one "as soon as possible."

After deliberating and analyzing the survey responses, the Vestry has decided not to proceed with re-gathering for public in-person worship services at this time. The members of the Vestry believe that the high rate of vaccinations against COVID-19 in our community is encouraging and that in-person worship services will be available to the public again in the not-too-distant future, but we are not quite ready to set the timeline.


We will continue to hold Sunday and holiday worship via Livestream sessions, which under Diocesan guidelines may include up to 10 people in the church to produce the videos. If you are interested in serving as a reader, tech support, singer, or other liturgical role, please contact Fr. Arboleda at FrGAA@StMattSav.org.


C. Bookkeeper Wanted: We are fielding candidates for open Bookkeeper position. If you know of a qualified candidate, please share the following job description and invite them to apply by sending a cover letter and résumé to FrGAA@StMattSav.org.


https://drive.google.com/file/d/1nV28OhFpK49O_ZHWB4pJZD1qmW6CFM_8/view


D. Wednesday Study in Lent: This Lent, St. Matthew's will hold a weekly discussion about the Episcopal Diocese of Georgia's Thriving in the Vine: Daily Reflections for Lent. We encourage parishioners to read the daily devotions prepared by priests and laypeople from around our Diocese (including folks from St. Matthew's). Download the Lenten Devotional Book here: https://gaepiscopal.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/Lent-2021-Book.pdf. You may also purchase a printed version of the devotional book for $3.60 per copy, plus shipping at: https://www.lulu.com/en/us/shop/liz-williams/thriving-in-the-vine/paperback/product-gprw5q.html?page=1&pageSize=4.


On Wednesdays from February 24 - March 31 at 5:30 PM, right after Evening Prayer ends, we will hold a discussion group focusing on the spiritual practice of the week (highlighted each Saturday and Sunday), and provide time for a conversation about the other weekday devotions. The Devotional Study will meet over Zoom using the same call information as Wednesday Evening Prayer. All you need to do is log into the call at 5:30 to join the study. If you log into the call at 5:00, you can pray with us and be featured on the Zoom Facebook Live-stream. Note that the discussion group will not be live-streamed to Facebook.


For security purposes, below is the Meeting ID only; please check your St. Matthew's e-Newsletter for the password (or email FrGAA@StMattSav.org to request it).


Topic: Zoom Evening Prayer

Time: 05:30 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada) every Wednesday


Join Zoom Meeting: See e-Newsletter


Meeting ID: 991 8577 8541

Passcode: See e-Newsletter


Dial by your location: +1 301 715 8592 US (Washington D.C)

Meeting ID: 991 8577 8541

Passcode: See e-Newsletter


E. Virtual Coffee Hour 3/28: Join us for virtual coffee hour over Zoom on Palm Sunday at 10:45 AM.


For security purposes, below is the Meeting ID only; please check your St. Matthew's e-Newsletter for the password (or email FrGAA@StMattSav.org to request it).


Topic: St. Matthew's Coffee Hour

Time: Mar 14, 2021 10:45 AM Eastern Time (US and Canada)


Join Zoom Meeting: See e-Newsletter


Meeting ID: 825 7251 1175

Passcode: See e-Newsletter


Dial by your location: +1 301 715 8592 US (Washington DC)

Meeting ID: 825 7251 1175

Passcode: See e-Newsletter


F. Raleigh Bryant Burial Plans TBD: St. Matthew's mourns the death of Mr. Raleigh A. Bryant, Jr., who passed away on December 18, 2020, at the age of 96. Mr. Bryant will be cremated and buried at a future date to be determined. A graveside burial service will be announced once plans are finalized. For Mr. Bryant's full obituary and online guestbook, please visit the following link to Adams Funeral Services' website: https://www.adamsfuneralservicesinc.com/obituary/MrRaleigh-BryantJr


G. T/W/Th Evening Prayer via Zoom: On Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays, Fr. Arboleda invites you to pray Evening Prayer with him over Zoom. The video will continue to stream to Facebook Live at 5:00 PM. Please join the Zoom call by 4:50 PM. Otherwise, watch the prayer service as you have been on Facebook Live.


During Lent, we will use the Evening Prayer liturgy from Enriching Our Worship 1, an Episcopal worship resource that includes new prayers from more parts of the Bible, an emphasis on non-gendered language for God, and featuring more feminine perspectives both ancient and modern.


For security purposes, below is the Meeting ID only; please check your St. Matthew's e-Newsletter for the password (or email FrGAA@StMattSav.org to request it).


Topic: Zoom Evening Prayer

Time: 05:00 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada) every Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday


Join Zoom Meeting: See e-Newsletter


Meeting ID: 991 8577 8541

Passcode: See e-Newsletter


Dial by your location: +1 301 715 8592 US (Washington D.C)

Meeting ID: 991 8577 8541

Passcode: See e-Newsletter


H. “Trip Around the World” Quilt Raffle: The Quilter's Guild, through St. Matthew's ECW, is raffling a "Trip Around the World" Quilt to benefit St. Matthew's Building Renovation Fund. This fund supports major extra-budgetary building improvement projects, such as painting, replacing the sound system, replacing the oven in Toomer-Walker Hall, etc.


This beautiful, jewel-toned quilt measures 103"x90" and will fit a queen-sized bed. This machine-stitched quilt in tones of deep violet amethyst, blue sapphire, green emerald, blue topaz, and green peridot will enhance any bedroom.


The winner will be announced on September 30, 2021. Winners do not need to be present to win. In addition to the grand prize of the "Trip Around the World '' quilt, there will be interim raffles of seasonal quilt-type projects for no additional ticket purchase. Interim winners will still be eligible for the grand prize.

The second interim drawing was on February 28, 2021. Sandra Mitchell and Iris Jenkins won aprons designed by our Quilters' Guild. The next interim drawing will be around Easter.


Tickets are $15 each. Please make donations in $15 increments. Tickets may be purchased by:

  1. Mailing a check to St. Matthew's with "Quilt Raffle" in the memo line; OR

  2. Visiting https://onrealm.org/StMattSav/give/quilt

Expect your raffle tickets to be returned to you by mail or email within 5-7 business days of receipt. Direct any questions to office@stmattsav.org.



The Parish Prayer List

Prayer List: Martha Avery, Zavier Bradley, Myrtle Brow-Hollis, Jacquelyn Bryant, Christine Brown, Genella Chamberlain, Taylor Blue Clemons, Annie Colbert, Ana Columna, Lazola Cope, Alice Dailey, Beryl Dandy, Mark Dashiell, Brittany Dawson, Roland Dixon, Eduardo Espinosa, Imani Ferguson, Ruby Fernandez, Harry Frazier, Yvonne Gentel, Charles Gordon, Amanda Green, Jocelyn Bryant Harden, Loretta Harmond, Marva Harris, Enoch Henderson, Charles E. Hines, Kenneth Howard, Terri Howard, Dale Hundley, Jared Hundley, Tracy Hundley, Milinda James, Alvin Jenkins, Dana Jenkins, David Jones, Frances T. Jones, Lori Jones, Robert L. Jones, Sr., Whitney Kennedy, Leonard Law, Jr., Ralph Lovett, Ryan Lovett, Tammie Lovett, Marcus Marzen, Joan Maty, Craig Maxwell, Sada Maxwell, Altheria Maynard, Carmelita Maynard, Bette Milledge, Hollie Moultrie, Patricia Murry, Russell Nails, Dorothy Neal, Jabbaar Newton, Jameel Newton, Glenzy Payne, Robert Payne, Willie Mae Robinson, Paul Rockwell, Dison Washington Slaughter, James Small, Gwendolyn Smith, Courtney Watts Vista, Ed Vista, Willie Stephens, Lori Ward, Gertrude Washington, and Noel Wheeler.


Birthdays: Jordyn Jones (3/29) and Rashad Taylor, Sr. (4/3)

Wedding Anniversaries: Fr. Charles and Evalena Hoskins (4/1)


Recent Deaths: Raleigh Bryant (12/18)

May the souls of all the departed rest in peace; and may light perpetual shine upon them. Amen.




Note: This service is reproduced from The Book of Common Prayer 1979 (BCP), The Hymnal 1982 (Hymn), Lift Every Voice and Sing II: An African American Hymnal (LEV), and other sources cited. The Scripture readings are from the New Revised Standard Version (NRSV) of the Bible.


Image Credit: https://www.crosswalk.com/special-coverage/easter/ways-to-celebrate-palm-sunday-at-home.html

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