• Fr. Guillermo A. Arboleda

Sunday Worship for February 14, 2021


The Holy Eucharist: Liturgy of the Word

Last Sunday After the Epiphany (Year B) February 14, 2021


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

Sunday, February 7, 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.


Today's service is the Liturgy of the Word (or the first part of the Holy Eucharist service we use on normal Sundays). This is 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 as printed.


This week, we will make some technological and liturgical changes to our live stream, which you may or may not notice while you watch. All these changes are intended to simplify the production process of these worship videos and be mindful of COVID-19 safety measures.

  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 3-4 people in the church on Sunday morning (Ms. Dandy, 1-2 lay readers, and myself). 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 40 minutes.

  3. Therefore, 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 Word of God



Hymn #135: Songs of Thankfulness and Praise

(Verses 1-2, 4)


1. Songs of thankfulness and praise,

Jesus, Lord, to thee we raise,

manifested by the star

to the sages from afar;

branch of royal David's stem

in thy birth at Bethlehem;

anthems be to thee addressed,

God in man made manifest.


2. Manifest at Jordan's stream,

Prophet, Priest, and King supreme;

and at Cana, wedding-guest,

in thy Godhead manifest;

manifest in power divine,

changing water into wine;

anthems be to thee addressed,

God in man made manifest.


4 Manifest on mountain height,

Shining in resplendent light,

Where disciples filled with awe

Thy transfigured glory saw.

When from there thou reddest them

Steadfast to Jerusalem,

Cross and Easter Day attest

God in man made manifest.


Words: Sts. 1-3, Christopher Woodsworth, Public Domain; st. 4, F. Bland Tucker © 1985, Church Publishing, Inc.

Music: Salzburg, melody Jakob Hintze; harm. Johann Sebastian Bach, Public Domain.

Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE #84263 & #11728. All rights reserved.



Opening Sentences

[BCP, p. 355]


Blessed be God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

And blessed be his kingdom, now and forever. Amen.



The Collect for Purity

[BCP, p. 355]

Almighty God, to you all hearts are open, all desires known, and from you no secrets are hid: Cleanse the thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of your Holy Spirit, that we may perfectly love you, and worthily magnify your holy Name; through Christ our Lord. Amen.



Hymn S-280: Glory to God (Canticle 20)

[BCP, p. 356]


Glory to God in the highest,

and peace to his people on earth.


Lord God, heavenly King,

Almighty God and Father,

we worship you, we give you thanks,

we praise you for your glory.


Lord Jesus Christ, only Son of the Father,

Lord God, Lamb of God,

you take away the sin of the world:

have mercy on us;

you are seated at the right hand of the Father:

receive our prayer.


For you alone are the Holy One,

you alone are the Lord,

you alone are the Most High,

Jesus Christ,

with the Holy Spirit,

in the glory of God the Father. Amen.


Words: Public Domain.

Music: Robert Powell, © 1985 Church Publishing, Inc.

Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE #77081. All rights reserved.


The Collect of the Day

[BCP, p. 357, 217]

The Lord be with you.

And also with you.

Let us pray:


O God, who before the passion of your only-begotten Son revealed his glory upon the holy mountain: Grant to us that we, beholding by faith the light of his countenance, may be strengthened to bear our cross, and be changed into his likeness from glory to glory; 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 Second Book of Kings (2:1-12)

When the Lord was about to take Elijah up to heaven by a whirlwind, Elijah and Elisha were on their way from Gilgal. Elijah said to Elisha, “Stay here; for the Lord has sent me as far as Bethel.” But Elisha said, “As the Lord lives, and as you yourself live, I will not leave you.” So they went down to Bethel. The company of prophets who were in Bethel came out to Elisha, and said to him, “Do you know that today the Lord will take your master away from you?” And he said, “Yes, I know; keep silent.”


Elijah said to him, “Elisha, stay here; for the Lord has sent me to Jericho.” But he said, “As the Lord lives, and as you yourself live, I will not leave you.” So they came to Jericho. The company of prophets who were at Jericho drew near to Elisha, and said to him, “Do you know that today the Lord will take your master away from you?” And he answered, “Yes, I know; be silent.”


Then Elijah said to him, “Stay here; for the Lord has sent me to the Jordan.” But he said, “As the Lord lives, and as you yourself live, I will not leave you.” So the two of them went on. Fifty men of the company of prophets also went, and stood at some distance from them, as they both were standing by the Jordan. Then Elijah took his mantle and rolled it up, and struck the water; the water was parted to the one side and to the other, until the two of them crossed on dry ground.


When they had crossed, Elijah said to Elisha, “Tell me what I may do for you, before I am taken from you.” Elisha said, “Please let me inherit a double share of your spirit.” He responded, “You have asked a hard thing; yet, if you see me as I am being taken from you, it will be granted you; if not, it will not.” As they continued walking and talking, a chariot of fire and horses of fire separated the two of them, and Elijah ascended in a whirlwind into heaven. Elisha kept watching and crying out, “Father, father! The chariots of Israel and its horsemen!” But when he could no longer see him, he grasped his own clothes and tore them in two pieces.

The Word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God


Psalm 50:1-6

[BCP, p. 654]

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

1 The Lord, the God of gods, has spoken; * he has called the earth from the rising of the sun to its setting.

2 Out of Zion, perfect in its beauty, * God reveals himself in glory.

3 Our God will come and will not keep silence; * before him there is a consuming flame, and round about him a raging storm.

4 He calls the heavens and the earth from above * to witness the judgment of his people.

5 "Gather before me my loyal followers, * those who have made a covenant with me and sealed it with sacrifice."

6 Let the heavens declare the rightness of his cause; * for God himself is judge.



A Reading from the Second Letter to the Corinthians (4:3-6)

Even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing. In their case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. For we do not proclaim ourselves; we proclaim Jesus Christ as Lord and ourselves as your slaves for Jesus’ sake. For it is the God who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.


The Word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God


The Holy Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ According to St. Mark (9:2-9)

Glory to you, Lord Christ.

Jesus took with him Peter and James and John, and led them up a high mountain apart, by themselves. And he was transfigured before them, and his clothes became dazzling white, such as no one on earth could bleach them. And there appeared to them Elijah with Moses, who were talking with Jesus. Then Peter said to Jesus, “Rabbi, it is good for us to be here; let us make three dwellings, one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.” He did not know what to say, for they were terrified. Then a cloud overshadowed them, and from the cloud there came a voice, “This is my Son, the Beloved; listen to him!” Suddenly when they looked around, they saw no one with them any more, but only Jesus.


As they were coming down the mountain, he ordered them to tell no one about what they had seen, until after the Son of Man had risen from the dead.

The Gospel of the Lord.

Praise to you, Lord Christ.



The Sermon

“Responding to Grief” by Fr. Guillermo A. Arboleda


In just a few days, we will begin the season of Lent once again. We expect that it will be only the second-strangest Lent of our lifetimes (a close second behind last year). As we continue to remain apart from one another in church, sheltering-in-place as we are able to try to protect ourselves and others from the coronavirus pandemic, we may be wondering why we need Lent. What purpose does it serve to remember that we are dust when illness and death are all around us? Why should we fast or pray when the world has been so chaotic and disorienting?


While we may be living through the most significant plague of the last century, we are by no means the only generation of people who have ever suffered hardship. Across time and space, people of faith and goodwill always endured difficult times. Life has never been easy. The details of how we suffer changes with time, place, culture, and circumstance, but we are never truly alone in our pain, confusion, or grief.


Being a Christian believer does not shield us from the changes and chances of this life. It doesn’t insulate us from the pain and suffering of the world. If anything, being a follower of Jesus Christ brings us closer to our own trauma, and the traumatic experiences of others. The Holy Spirit of God living in us fills us with love and empathy for ourselves and others. Christ makes it more difficult for us to become numb and ignore the realities of suffering in this life.


That’s why we have stories in Scripture that show us how people react differently to unexpected changes, to loss and grief. In 2 Kings 2, we read an episode from Elijah and Elisha’s life together. Elijah was a powerful prophet of the Lord, who famously confronted the king and queen of Israel over their worship of false gods. Later in life, he took on a protege or apprentice named Elisha. Elisha followed him around, observing all the ministry he did, speaking the word of the Lord, healing and helping people. Elisha watched and learned, and he looked up to Elijah.


Suddenly, in this chapter, we learn that God planned “to take Elijah up to heaven by a whirlwind” (2:1). Even though this is not technically death, from Elisha’s perspective, it’s no different. He is about to lose his friend and mentor. Elijah is going where Elisha can see him no longer. And they all know it. It’s not that different emotionally from learning that a loved one has a terminal diagnosis, that they only have so long to live.


Three times, we hear that Elijah tries to separate from Elisha. He has a God-given mission about where to go and what to do before his time is up. And three times, we hear that Elisha refuses. Three times, Elisha says that he will stay with him until the very end: “As the Lord lives, and as you yourself live, I will not leave you” (2 Kings 2:2b, 4b, 6b).


Along the way, different “companies of prophets” tell Elisha three times that he is about to lose his mentor. They emphasize the coming loss, while Elisha focuses on spending his last day together with Elijah. Elisha does not deny the reality that he will lose his companion. He does not shy away from the truth. But he shows resolve, grit, and determination. Elisha will not leave his friend’s side. He wants to be with him until the end, no matter how sad it will be.


Because he stays with Elijah, Elisha witnesses a miracle. They cross the Jordan River on dry land, just as the Israelites did as they entered the Promised Land with Joshua, and just as their parents had crossed the Red Sea with Moses. Because he stays with Elijah, Elisha also receives a great blessing. He asks for and receives a double share of Elijah’s prophetic spirit.


Ultimately, nothing Elisha did stopped Elijah’s ascension into heaven. Elijah didn’t stay on earth any longer. But Elisha’s loyalty allowed him to cherish their time together and grow spiritually.


This reminds me of how so many of us face heart-breaking realities during the pandemic. We have lost friends and family members. Some to the virus and others to the normal ebbs and flows of life. For some, we have been able to stay alongside them. For others, we literally could not. But by trusting in God’s mercy, we have the grit and determination we need to see God’s miraculous hand at work. We have the persistence to ask for God’s great blessings through our grief and despite our pain.


Even and especially in times of grief and despair, God is with us. God’s glory might be shining in all its fullness like it was for Peter, James, and John, on the mountaintop with Jesus, Moses, and Elijah (the very same one). If we allow ourselves to be distracted, like Peter was, we might focus all our attention on what is lacking, on what we don’t have now or won’t have moving forward. (Peter stared into God’s face and his first thought was to build something because the place wasn’t perfect as-is.) But if our heart is filled with both love and determination, we can walk the path toward blessings far beyond our imagination.


And that’s really what Lent is all about. It’s a time to re-center ourselves on both the love of God and the grit and steadfastness we need to survive this world. God’s love is a given, but during Lent we practice things that build and exercise our determination “muscles.” So we spend a little more time in prayer. We might fast from some thing or things that we don’t need to remind us to pray. We give a little more to those in need. We seek justice and fairness for ourselves and others. And we do all these things knowing that in and through our grief, God is present. God is with us, and God is never leaving our side. Amen.



LEV #58: The Lord Is My Light


The Lord is my light and my salvation,

The Lord is my light and my salvation,

The Lord is my light and my salvation;

Whom shall I fear?


Whom shall I fear?

Whom shall I fear?

The Lord is the strength of my life;

Whom shall I fear?


In time of trouble, He shall hide me,

O in time of trouble, He shall hide me,

In time of trouble, He shall hide me;

Whom shall I fear?


Words: Lillian Bouknight © 1980 Savgos Music, Inc.

Music: Lillian Bouknight, arr. Paul Gainer © 1980 Savgos Music, Inc.

Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE #41692. 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 Form IV, BCP, p. 388]

Let us pray for the Church and for the world.


Grant, Almighty God, that all who confess your Name, may be united in your truth, live together in your love, and reveal your glory in the world; especially for Michael our Presiding Bishop, Frank our Bishop, Guillermo our Priest, and all Christians in Savannah.


Silence


Lord, in your mercy

Hear our prayer.


Guide the people of this land, and of all the nations, in the ways of justice and peace; guide especially Joseph our president, Brian our governor, Van our mayor, Chester the chair of our County Commission, Ann the Superintendent of our Public Schools, and all civic officials; that we may honor one another and serve the common good.


Silence


Lord, in your mercy

Hear our prayer.


Give us all a reverence for the earth as your own creation, that we may use its resources rightly in the service of others and to your honor and glory.


Silence


Lord, in your mercy

Hear our prayer.


Bless all whose lives are closely linked with ours, and grant that we may serve Christ in them, and love one another as he loves us. Bless especially our Day Care Staff, Students, and their families; bless Bette Milledge (2/20) on her birthday; and bless all couples on Valentine's Day.


Silence


Lord, in your mercy

Hear our prayer.


Comfort and heal all those who suffer in body, mind, or spirit; give them courage and hope in their troubles, and bring them the joy of your salvation. We pray especially the people of our Parish Prayer List: Martha Avery, Evelyn Arboleda, Zavier Bradley, Myrtle Brow-Hollis, Jacquelyn Bryant, Christine Brown, Genella Chamberlain, Taylor Blue Clemons, Annie Colbert, Lazola Cope, Alice Dailey, Beryl Dandy, Mark Dashiell, Brittany Dawson, Eduardo Espinosa, Imani Ferguson, Ruby Fernandez, Harry Frazier, 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, 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; and all whom we remember now…


Silence


Lord, in your mercy

Hear our prayer.


We commend to your mercy all who have died, especially Raleigh Bryant [and _______], and those whom we remember now… ; that your will for them may be fulfilled; and we pray that we may share with all your saints in your eternal kingdom.


Silence


Lord, in your mercy

Hear our prayer.


The Celebrant adds a concluding Collect.


O God, by the leading of a star you manifested your only Son to the peoples of the earth: Lead us, who know you now by faith, to your presence, where we may see your glory face to face; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.



Confession of Sin

[BCP, p. 360]


Let us confess our sins against God and our neighbor.


Silence may be kept.

Most merciful God, we confess that we have sinned against you in thought, word, and deed, by what we have done, and by what we have left undone. We have not loved you with our whole heart; we have not loved our neighbors as ourselves. We are truly sorry and we humbly repent. For the sake of your Son Jesus Christ, have mercy on us and forgive us; that we may delight in your will, and walk in your ways, to the glory of your Name. Amen.


The Bishop, when present, or the Priest, stands and says

Almighty God have mercy on you, forgive you all your sins through our Lord Jesus Christ, strengthen you in all goodness, and by the power of the Holy Spirit keep you in eternal life. 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: Many people are feeling the economic impact of the COVID-19 crisis, including the church. 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.

“O Lord our God, you are worthy to receive glory and honor and power; because you have created all things, and by your will they were created and have their being.”

[Revelation 4:11; BCP, p. 377]

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

Hymn #427: When Morning Gilds the Skies

[Verses 1-3]


1 When morning gilds the skies,

my heart, awaking, cries,

may Jesus Christ be praised!

When evening shadows fall,

this rings my curfew call,

may Jesus Christ be praised!


2 When mirth for music longs,

this is my song of songs:

may Jesus Christ be praised!

God's holy house of prayer

hath none that can compare with:

Jesus Christ be praised!


3 No lovelier antiphon

in all high heaven is known

than, Jesus Christ be praised!

There to the eternal Word

the eternal psalm is heard:

may Jesus Christ be praised!

Words: German, ca. 1800; tr. Robert Seymour Bridges; Public Domain.

Music: Laudes Domini, Joseph Barnby, Public Domain.

Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE #72041. 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 Blessing

[The Book of Occasional Services 2018, p. 9]


May Christ, the Son of God, be manifest in you, that your lives may be a light to the world; and the blessing of God Almighty, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, be among you, and remain with you always. Amen.



Parish Announcements

[See below]



The Dismissal

[BCP, p. 366]


Go in peace to love and serve the Lord.

Thanks be to God.



Parish Announcements - 2/14/21


A. Hybrid Ash Wednesday Service: Ash Wednesday will take place on Wednesday, February 17, 2021. This fast day marks the beginning of the Season of Lent and the 40-day journey toward Easter. It is typically observed through a worship service involving crosses of ash marked on the foreheads of all worshippers. Due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, we will offer safer ways to participate in Ash Wednesday 2021.


For all participants, St. Matthew's will live-stream a short Ash Wednesday Liturgy on February 17 at 7:00 AM. This will be available for viewing any time on Ash Wednesday via our Facebook page. As a home worshipper, you have three options for how to "receive ashes."

  1. On Ash Wednesday, you can drive through the church parking lot between 7:30-8:30 AM or 6:00-7:00 PM, and receive ashes from your car window. This will look similar to Christmas Eve Drive-Thru Communion, but with imposition of ashes.

  2. On Sunday, February 14, from 11:00 AM - 12:00 noon, you can come to the church to pick up a small plastic bag full of pre-blessed ash. If you choose this option, you can mark your own forehead (or mark the foreheads of others in your household) with the ashes on Wednesday after watching the Facebook Live service.

  3. Believe it or not, ashes are completely optional for observing Ash Wednesday. You can watch the Facebook Live service without receiving any ashes and still be a faithful Christian!

B. 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. This virtual devotional book will be published this Friday, February 12 to everyone who received the Diocese of Georgia newsletter From the Field. St. Matthew's will send it out in a special e-Newsletter edition on Shrove Tuesday. We encourage parishioners to read the daily devotions prepared by priests and laypeople from around our Diocese (including folks from St. Matthew's).


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


C. Virtual Coffee Hour TODAY: Join us for virtual coffee hour over Zoom today at 10:30 AM. Today is also the day you can come to the church to pick up blessed ashes to use at home on Ash Wednesday. Fr. Arboleda will be available to give these to you from 11:00-12:00 noon.


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: Feb 14, 2021 10:30 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


D. Annual Meeting & Annual Report ONLINE: Last Sunday, St. Matthew's held its 2021 Annual Meeting virtually through Zoom. You can read about the Annual Meeting and download the Annual Report here: https://www.stmattsav.org/post/annual-meeting-on-january-31-2021.


The entire meeting was recorded through Zoom and has been posted to a private YouTube link. If you missed the Annual Meeting and would like to watch it, please check your e-Newsletter for the link. If you have trouble accessing the e-Newsletter, please contact the church office (see below). If you would like a paper copy of the 2021 Annual Report to be mailed to you, please call or email the church office at (912) 234-4440 or Office@StMattSav.org.


E. 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


F. Donations for New Security System, Internet, & Camera: In the last month, the Vestry and Rector have planned several improvements to our facility using the Building Renovation Fund. The Vestry approved a wholesale replacement and upgrade of the burglary alarm system across our entire building and we have asked several members to contribute to the upfront installation costs. The Vestry also approved a complete upgrade to our internet and wifi equipment, such that there is universal hi-speed internet coverage throughout the building (Office, Parish Hall, Day Care, and Sanctuary). Finally, we are purchasing a new HD video camera for use during live-stream worship on Sundays and holidays (see above).


Now that the internet installation is complete, the total cost of all these upgrades has increased to approximately $6500.00. We thank all those that have already contributed designated gifts toward these projects. If you have not already contributed, please consider making an additional donation to the Building Renovation Fund for one or all of these building upgrades.


The Altar Guild invites parishioners to offer memorial gifts in honor of departed loved ones toward these projects in lieu of flowers. Raffle tickets for the quilt also go toward the Building Renovation Fund and can support this cause.


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 first interim drawing was on December 16, 2020. Sheila Jones won four Christmas potholders and Yavonne Taylor won a set of six Christmas placemats. The next interim drawing will be in late February.


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.


I. The Parish Prayer List:

Prayer List: Martha Avery, Evelyn Arboleda, Zavier Bradley, Myrtle Brow-Hollis, Jacquelyn Bryant, Christine Brown, Genella Chamberlain, Taylor Blue Clemons, Annie Colbert, Lazola Cope, Alice Dailey, Beryl Dandy, Mark Dashiell, Brittany Dawson, Eduardo Espinosa, Imani Ferguson, Ruby Fernandez, Harry Frazier, 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, 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: Bette Milledge (2/20)

Wedding Anniversaries: N/A


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://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:095.Elijah_Ascends_to_Heaven_in_a_Chariot_of_Fire.jpg

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