• Fr. Guillermo A. Arboleda

Sunday Worship for July 11, 2021


The Holy Eucharist

7th Sunday after Pentecost (Proper 10B, Track 2)

July 11, 2021


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

Sunday, July 11, at 9:30 a.m. (or anytime afterward)





The Holy Eucharist: Rite II


The Word of God



Hymn #372: Praise to the Living God

[Verses 1-4]


1 Praise to the living God! All praised be his Name

who was, and is, and is to be, for ay the same.

The one eternal God ere aught that now appears:

the first, the last, beyond all thought his timeless years!


2 Formless, all lovely forms declare his loveliness;

holy, no holiness of earth can his express.

Lo, he is Lord of all. Creation speaks his praise,

and everywhere above, below, his will obeys.


3 His Spirit floweth free, high surging where it will:

in prophet's word he spake of old: he speaketh still.

Established is his law, and changeless it shall stand,

deep writ upon the human heart, on sea, on land.


4 Eternal life hath he implanted in the soul;

his love shall be our strength and stay while ages roll.

Praise to the living God! All praised be his Name

who was, and is, and is to be, for aye the same.


Words: Medieval Jewish liturgy; tr. Max Landsberg and Newton M. Mann, Public Domain.

Music: Leoni, Hebrew melody, harm. Hymns Ancient and Modern (1875), alt., Public Domain.

All rights reserved.



Opening Sentences

[BCP, p. 355]


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

And blessed be God's 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 (Gloria in Excelsis)

[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, 231]

The Lord be with you.

And also with you.

Let us pray:


O Lord, mercifully receive the prayers of your people who call upon you, and grant that they may know and understand what things they ought to do, and also may have grace and power faithfully to accomplish them; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.


A Reading from the Prophet Amos (7:7-15)

This is what the Lord God showed me: the Lord was standing beside a wall built with a plumb line, with a plumb line in his hand. And the Lord said to me, “Amos, what do you see?” And I said, “A plumb line.” Then the Lord said,


“See, I am setting a plumb line in the midst of my people Israel; I will never again pass them by;

the high places of Isaac shall be made desolate, and the sanctuaries of Israel shall be laid waste, and I will rise against the house of Jeroboam with the sword.”


Then Amaziah, the priest of Bethel, sent to King Jeroboam of Israel, saying, "Amos has conspired against you in the very centre of the house of Israel; the land is not able to bear all his words. For thus Amos has said,


'Jeroboam shall die by the sword, and Israel must go into exile away from his land.' "


And Amaziah said to Amos, "O seer, go, flee away to the land of Judah, earn your bread there, and prophesy there; but never again prophesy at Bethel, for it is the king’s sanctuary, and it is a temple of the kingdom."


Then Amos answered Amaziah, "I am no prophet, nor a prophet’s son; but I am a herdsman, and a dresser of sycomore trees, and the Lord took me from following the flock, and the Lord said to me, 'Go, prophesy to my people Israel.'”

The Word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God.


Psalm 85:8-13

[BCP, p. 709]

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

8 I will listen to what the Lord God is saying, * for he is speaking peace to his faithful people and to those who turn their hearts to him.


9 Truly, his salvation is very near to those who fear him, * that his glory may dwell in our land.


10 Mercy and truth have met together; * righteousness and peace have kissed each other.


11 Truth shall spring up from the earth, * and righteousness shall look down from heaven.


12 The Lord will indeed grant prosperity, * and our land will yield its increase.


13 Righteousness shall go before him, * and peace shall be a pathway for his feet.



A Reading from the Letter to the Ephesians (1:3-14)

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, just as he chose us in Christ before the foundation of the world to be holy and blameless before him in love. He destined us for adoption as his children through Jesus Christ, according to the good pleasure of his will, to the praise of his glorious grace that he freely bestowed on us in the Beloved. In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace that he lavished on us. With all wisdom and insight he has made known to us the mystery of his will, according to his good pleasure that he set forth in Christ, as a plan for the fullness of time, to gather up all things in him, things in heaven and things on earth. In Christ we have also obtained an inheritance, having been destined according to the purpose of him who accomplishes all things according to his counsel and will, so that we, who were the first to set our hope on Christ, might live for the praise of his glory. In him you also, when you had heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and had believed in him, were marked with the seal of the promised Holy Spirit; this is the pledge of our inheritance toward redemption as God's own people, to the praise of his glory.


The Word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God.


The Holy Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ According to St. Mark (6:14-29)

Glory to you, Lord Christ.

King Herod heard of Jesus and his disciples, for Jesus’ name had become known. Some were saying, “John the baptizer has been raised from the dead; and for this reason these powers are at work in him.” But others said, “It is Elijah.” And others said, “It is a prophet, like one of the prophets of old.” But when Herod heard of it, he said, “John, whom I beheaded, has been raised.”


For Herod himself had sent men who arrested John, bound him, and put him in prison on account of Herodias, his brother Philip’s wife, because Herod had married her. For John had been telling Herod, “It is not lawful for you to have your brother’s wife.” And Herodias had a grudge against him, and wanted to kill him. But she could not, for Herod feared John, knowing that he was a righteous and holy man, and he protected him. When he heard him, he was greatly perplexed; and yet he liked to listen to him. But an opportunity came when Herod on his birthday gave a banquet for his courtiers and officers and for the leaders of Galilee. When his daughter Herodias came in and danced, she pleased Herod and his guests; and the king said to the girl, “Ask me for whatever you wish, and I will give it.” And he solemnly swore to her, “Whatever you ask me, I will give you, even half of my kingdom.” She went out and said to her mother, “What should I ask for?” She replied, “The head of John the baptizer.” Immediately she rushed back to the king and requested, “I want you to give me at once the head of John the Baptist on a platter.” The king was deeply grieved; yet out of regard for his oaths and for the guests, he did not want to refuse her. Immediately the king sent a soldier of the guard with orders to bring John’s head. He went and beheaded him in the prison, brought his head on a platter, and gave it to the girl. Then the girl gave it to her mother. When his disciples heard about it, they came and took his body, and laid it in a tomb.

The Gospel of the Lord.

Praise to you, Lord Christ.



The Sermon

"Truth to Power” by Fr. Guillermo A. Arboleda


Bad things happen when religion gets too close to politics and power. In ancient and modern times, religious people sometimes try to cozy up to politicians. They want to be close to the halls of power. They imagine that they will be able to influence politicians to do the right thing. But more often than not, religious people are just as easily corrupted as politicians are. The allure of power tempts religious people to compromise on their integrity, to support their allies over godly truth. They become loyal to the system rather than loyal to God’s commandment to love your neighbor as yourself. And things get messy.


Amos and John the Baptist are prophetic religious voices who challenge their kings to do better. Those kings and political leaders are accustomed to religious leaders who support them blindly. But Amos and John refuse to simply tell these kings what they want to hear. They stand up for the truth, whether it’s popular or politically helpful or not.


In ancient Israel, when Amos was alive, professional prophets worked for the king’s court, available for the king to consult to hear the “word of the Lord” any time. They were expected to say favorable things about the king because the king provided them with room, board, and stipend. Even if that wasn’t explicitly the arrangement, most of these prophets never stepped out of line. That’s why Amos says that he isn’t a “prophet.” He means that he isn’t a paid prophet like the kind the king was used to hearing from. He used to be a shepherd but then God called him prophesy to the people of Israel. He wasn’t anybody special in the eyes of the world, but he was special in God’s eyes. And most importantly, he couldn’t be bought out.


Amos says that God is setting a plumb line in the middle of Israel under King Jeroboam. A plumb line is used in construction to make sure that a wall or other structure is straight, that it is perpendicular with the ground. Today, we use levels with bubbles of air in water and other tools to measure whether something is straight. But in ancient times, they simply tied a weight to a line of string and hung it against the wall to compare the angle. (There is a photo of an ancient-looking plumb line at the top of today’s online program blog post.)


Through Amos, God says that Israel isn’t measuring up. It has failed to be straight, upright, and righteous. They aren’t treating people right. They are allowing the rich to hoard resources, stealing from the poor, trapping them in systems of debt, and punishing them for their poverty. This injustice is at least partially the king’s fault, the result of his government’s policies that have allowed inequity to run rampant. And Amos is out there in towns across Israel, preaching this message to anyone who will listen. His criticisms surely made King Jeroboam less popular with ordinary people.


That’s when one of the professional prophets, Amaziah, steps in to try to shut Amos up. He tells him to go home to Judah and stop causing trouble for Israel. Amos says he can’t be bought out or intimidated by the king because the king doesn’t employ him like the other prophets. Amos speaks what God tells him to speak; nothing more and nothing less. He doesn’t care if it makes the king angry. He cares that what he says is true.


Let’s look now at the Gospel of Mark. In First Century Judea, Herod didn’t have paid prophets like in Amos’ day, but he did expect his subjects to support him. They were not supposed to challenge him on moral grounds, to criticize his personal, professional, or political life. But John the Baptist did all of that. He refused to sweep the truth under the rug. He exposed Herod for his family treachery and scandal, for stealing his brother’s wife. He told it like it is in private and in public. So Herod and his family had John the Baptist arrested to shut him up.


John’s words caused such a stir and offended Herodias (Herod’s new wife) so much that she held a grudge. She waited for the right moment and took advantage of her husband’s foolish, drunken promises. Herodias tricks Herod into executing John. Herod doesn’t really want to kill the prophet, but he feels like he has to keep his word and save face in front of his guests, rather than protect human life. So they behead him.


Herod has grown so accustomed to power and influence that he has completely lost perspective on what is right and what is wrong. He doesn’t have anybody in his life to challenge him, to teach him, to correct him. John was one of those lonely voices and Herod and his family snuffed him out.


Amos and John the Baptist teach us how to be brave and to stand up for the truth in the face of powerful people. Herod teaches us how far those powerful people are willing to go to silence the truth. In our own times, we see this same dynamic play out in politics too. Certain kinds of Christianity have always had influence in American politics. There are loud religious voices in the ears of politicians feeding them pat answers to questions on many social issues -- reproductive rights, LGBTQ equality, and so-called critical race theory to name a few.


These unions between religion and politics often function to manipulate and distort truth as power corrupts both groups. After a while it can be easy to lose sight of what is actually good and right and true. It’s hard to remember to love your neighbor when politicians treat any disagreement like a war. It’s hard to remember to care for the poor when the poor are set up as the bad guys. It’s hard to resist oppression and injustice when you refuse to see it and call it what it is.


I’m not saying that you or I have all the right answers, religiously or politically. But I am saying that we need to avoid entangling ourselves with the system so deeply that we cannot speak the truth as God has revealed it to us. We don’t want to lose sight of the center of our faith: to love God and to love our neighbors as ourselves. Whether we are talking about our personal lives or political policies, this needs to be our driving force, not proximity to power. Let us follow Amos and John the Baptist who bravely defended the truth of God’s love for everyone, even to kings and governors. Amen.



Hymn #294: Baptized in Water, Sealed by the Spirit

[Verses 1-3]


1 Baptized in water,

Sealed by the Spirit,

Cleansed by the blood of Christ our King:

Heirs of salvation,

Trusting His promise,

Faithfully now God's praise we sing.


2 Baptized in water,

Sealed by the Spirit,

Dead in the tomb with Christ our King:

One with His rising,

freed and forgiven,

Thankfully now God's praise we sing.


3 Baptized in water,

Sealed by the Spirit,

Marked with the sign of Christ our King:

Born of one Father,

We are His children,

Joyfully now God's praise we sing.


Words: Michael Seward, alt. © 1982 Michael Seward.

Music: Point Loma, David Charles Walker © 1983 David Charles Walker.

Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE #00017. 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

[BCP, p. 392, Form VI]


In peace, we pray to you, Lord God.


Silence.


For all people in their daily life and work;

For our families, friends, and neighbors, and for those who are alone.


For 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 other civic officials; For this community, the nation, and the world;

For all who work for justice, freedom, and peace.


For the just and proper use of your creation;

For the victims of hunger, fear, injustice, and oppression.


For all who are in danger, sorrow, or any kind of trouble;

For those who minister to the sick, the friendless, and the needy.


For all the churches in Savannah, that we may be one as you are one with the Son, and the Holy Spirit; For the peace and unity of the Church of God;

For all who proclaim the Gospel, and all who seek the Truth.


For Justin, Archbishop of Canterbury; Michael, our Presiding Bishop; Frank, our Bishop; Guillermo our Priest; and for all bishops and other ministers;

For all who serve God in his Church.


For the special needs and concerns of this congregation, especially for our Day Care’s staff, students, and families, and for those on our Parish Prayer List: Martha Avery, Donald Baynes, Ronald Baynes, Shirley Clinton Bonaparte, Zavier Bradley, Myrtle Brow-Hollis, Christine Brown, Quinton Bruce, Jacquelyn Bryant, Genella Chamberlain, Taylor Blue, Annie Colbert, Lazola Cope, Alice Dailey, Beryl Dandy, Mark Dashiell, Brittany Dawson, Roland Dixon, Imani Ferguson, Ruby Fernandez, Harry Frazier, Karin Garcia, Colin Gentle, Angie Glover, Charles Gordon, Amanda Green, Jocelyn Bryant Harden, Loretta Harmond, Marva Harris, Enoch Henderson, Charles E. Hines, Kenneth Howard, Terri Howard, Anne Hudson, Lucy Hugging, Dale Hundley, Jared Hundley, Tracy Hundley, Janice C. Jackson, 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, Barbara McCary, Bette Milledge, John "Butch" Mitchell, Hollie Moultrie, Patricia Murry, Russell Nails, Dorothy Neal, Jabbaar Newton, Jameel Newton, Glenzy Payne, Robert Payne, Willie Mae Robinson, Paul Rockwell, Helen Scroggins, Dison Washington Slaughter, James Small, Gwendolyn Smith, Willie Stephens, Gon Trimble, Ed Vista, Lori Ward, Gertrude Washington, and Noel Wheeler; and those we remember now…


Silence. The People may add their own petitions.

Hear us, Lord;

For your mercy is great.


We thank you, Lord, for all the blessings of this life; for all visitors to this parish; for Loretta Harmond (7/11), Nicholas Maiorano (7/11), Mary Bonaparte (7/12), Margaret Anne Pearson (7/17), Grace Luten (7/17) and Jayda Newton (7/17) on their birthdays; and those people and things we remember now.


Silence. The People may add their own thanksgivings.


We will exalt you, O God our King;

And praise your Name for ever and ever.


We pray for all who have died, that they may have a place in your eternal kingdom, especially those we remember now...


Silence. The People may add their own petitions.


Lord, let your loving-kindness be upon them;

Who put their trust in you.


We pray to you also for the forgiveness of our sins.


Silence may be kept.


Leader and People:

Have mercy upon us, most merciful Father; in your compassion forgive us our sins, known and unknown, things done and left undone; and so uphold us by your Spirit that we may live and serve you in newness of life, to the honor and glory of your Name; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.


The Celebrant concludes with an absolution:

Almighty God have mercy on you, forgive you all your sins through the grace of 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: 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.

“Offer to God a sacrifice of thanksgiving, and make good your vows to the Most High.”

[Psalm 50:14; see BCP, p. 376]

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



LEV #159: Lift Him Up

[Verses 1-4]


1 How to reach the masses, those of ev’ry birth,

For an answer Jesus gave the key;

“And I, if I be lifted up from the earth,

Will draw all men unto Me.”


REFRAIN:

Lift the precious savior up,

Lift the precious savior up,

Still He speaks from eternity:

“And I, if I be lifted up from the earth,

Will draw all men unto Me.”


2 Oh! the world is hungry for the living bread,

Lift the Savior up for them to see;

Trust Him and do not doubt the words that He said,

“I’ll draw all men unto Me.” [REFRAIN]


3 Don’t exalt the preacher, don’t exalt the pew,

Preach the gospel simple, full and free;

Prove Him and you will find that promise is true,

“I’ll draw all men unto Me.” [REFRAIN]


4 Lift Him up by living as a Christian ought,

Let the world in you the Savior see;

Then all will gladly follow Him who once taught,

“I’ll draw all men unto Me.” [REFRAIN]

Words: Johnson Oatman, Jr., Public Domain.

Music: B. B. Beall, Public Domain.

Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE #95094. All rights reserved.



Eucharistic Prayer A

[BCP, p. 361]


The Lord be with you.

And also with you.

Lift up your hearts.

We lift them to the Lord.

Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.

It is right to give him thanks and praise.


It is right, and a good and joyful thing, always and everywhere to give thanks to you, Father Almighty, Creator of heaven and earth. ...


Therefore we praise you, joining our voices with Angels and Archangels and with all the company of heaven, who forever sing this hymn to proclaim the glory of your Name:


LEV #255:

Holy, holy, holy, holy, holy Lord God of hosts

Heaven and earth are filled with your glory.

Hosanna in the highest.

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

Hosanna in the highest, hosanna in the highest!


[Words: Public Domain; Music: Grayson Warren Brown, A Mass for a Soulfoul People © 1979 North American Liturgy Resources. Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE #98299. All Rights Reserved.]


The people stand or kneel.


Holy and gracious Father: In your infinite love you made us for yourself, and, when we had fallen into sin and become subject to evil and death, you, in your mercy, sent Jesus Christ, your only and eternal Son, to share our human nature, to live and die as one of us, to reconcile us to you, the God and Father of all.


He stretched out his arms upon the cross, and offered himself, in obedience to your will, a perfect sacrifice for the whole world.


On the night he was handed over to suffering and death, our Lord Jesus Christ took bread; and when he had given thanks to you, he broke it, and gave it to his disciples, and said, "Take, eat: This is my Body, which is given for you. Do this for the remembrance of me."


After supper he took the cup of wine; and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them, and said, "Drink this, all of you: This is my Blood of the new Covenant, which is shed for you and for many for the forgiveness of sins. Whenever you drink it, do this for the remembrance of me." Therefore we proclaim the mystery of faith:

Christ has died. Christ is risen. Christ will come again.


We celebrate the memorial of our redemption, O Father, in this sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving. Recalling his death, resurrection, and ascension, we offer you these gifts. Sanctify them by your Holy Spirit to be for your people the Body and Blood of your Son, the holy food and drink of new and unending life in him. Sanctify us also that we may faithfully receive this holy Sacrament, and serve you in unity, constancy, and peace; and at the last day bring us with all your saints into the joy of your eternal kingdom. All this we ask through your Son Jesus Christ: By him, and with him, and in him, in the unity of the Holy Spirit all honor and glory is yours, Almighty Father, now and for ever. AMEN.



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 Fraction Anthem

[BCP, p. 364]


Alleluia! Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us;

Therefore let us keep the feast. Alleluia!


The Gifts of God for the people of God.



Hymn #321: My God, Thy Table Now is Spread

[Verses 1-4]


1 My God, thy table now is spread,

thy cup with love doth overflow;

be all thy children thither led,

and let them thy sweet mercies know.


2 O let thy table honored be,

and furnished well with joyful guests:

and may each soul salvation see,

that here its sacred pledges tastes.


3 Drawn by thy quickening grace, O Lord,

in countless numbers let them come

and gather from their Father's board

the Bread that lives beyond the tomb.


4 Nor let thy spreading Gospel rest

till through the world thy truth has run,

till with this Bread all men be blest

who see the light or feel the sun.

Words: Sts. 1-3, Philip Doddridge, alt.; st. 4, Isaac Watts, alt., Public Domain.

Music: Rockingham, adapt. Edward Miller, harm. Samuel Webbe, Public Domain.

All rights reserved.



The Post-Communion Prayer

[Enriching our Worship 2 [2000], pp. 56-57]


Let us pray.


For In-Person Worshippers:

Faithful God,

in the wonder of your wisdom and love

you fed your people in the wilderness with the bread of angels,

and you sent Jesus to be the bread of life.

We thank you for feeding us with this bread.

May it strengthen us

that by the power of the Holy Spirit

we may embody your desire

and be renewed for your service

through Jesus Christ our Savior. Amen.


For Online Worshippers (i.e., Those Receiving Spiritual Communion):

Faithful God,

in the wonder of your wisdom and love

you fed your people in the wilderness with the bread of angels,

and you sent Jesus to be the bread of life.

Though we cannot consume now these gifts of bread [and wine],

we thank you that we have received the sacrament of Christ’s presence,

the forgiveness of sins, and all other benefits of Christ’s passion.

By the power of the Holy Spirit,

may we embody your desire

and be renewed for your service

through Jesus Christ our Savior. Amen.

The Blessing

[Adapted from Enriching Our Worship 1, p. 71]


Live without fear: your Creator has made you holy, has always protected you, and loves you as a mother. Go in peace to follow the good road 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


A. Revised COVID-19 Safety Guidelines for In-Person Worship: On June 21, the Vestry authorized revised COVID-19 Safety Guidelines for in-person worship at St. Matthew's. Changes include:

  • Up to 100 people are now allowed in the church at a time (increased from 70)

  • People may stay in the building for up to 1.5 hours (increased from 1 hour)

  • One-way foot traffic floor arrows are removed and no longer necessary

  • Congregational singing is now allowed

All people in attendance are still required to wear masks that cover the nose and mouth at all times and maintain social distancing in their assigned seating areas. Click here to read the Vestry's June 2021 COVID-19 Safety Guidelines in their entirety.


For now, we will maintain the current worship schedule: one Sunday service at 9:30 AM. We will reevaluate and consider the congregation's feedback in the late summer or early fall, once we have tried this out for a few months. Note that even if you do not feel comfortable attending, in person, we will continue to live-stream services to Facebook permanently.


B. St. Matthew's Christian Education "Book Club" Survey: Please help us plan the next Christian Education Book Study by completing a short survey. We are collecting feedback on previous studies and asking for your input on which book or topic to study together next. All survey results are requested by Sunday, July 11. We will launch the next Christian Education offering in mid-August. Take the survey here: https://forms.gle/rStGwN7GHatLSZqw5.


C. Raleigh Bryant Burial Service on 7/17: The family of Raleigh Bryant, Jr., invites the members of St. Matthew's to attend a memorial Burial service at St. Matthew's Church on Saturday, July 17, at 11:00 AM. Mr. Bryant was a longtime member of our church and leader in the Savannah community who passed away on December 18, 2020, at the age of 96. Mr. Bryant's remains will be laid to rest at Lincoln Memorial Cemetery (Hunter Army Airfield) following the service. Read his full obituary and more at: https://www.adamsfuneralservicesinc.com/obituary/MrRaleigh-BryantJr.


D. Emmaus House Paper Goods Drive: Emmaus House provides hot meals, showers, and laundry to the community five days per week in downtown Savannah. Last week, they asked the community to donate paper goods to support their work. Several church members have already answered the latest call by giving this month.


Emmaus House seeks:

  • Bottled water

  • Takeout boxes

  • Cutlery packets

  • Grocery bags

  • Aluminum foil

  • Paper towels

  • Laundry detergent

  • Dish detergent

  • Bleach

  • Latex gloves

Bring any and all donations directly to Emmaus House at 18 Abercorn St, Savannah, GA 31401 between 7:00 AM - 1:00 PM Mondays to Fridays.


Or, bring donations to St. Matthew's and we will deliver them to Emmaus House on your behalf.


E. Virtual Coffee Hour on Hiatus: Since our return to in-person worship gatherings, there has been less interest and engagement in the virtual coffee hour. For now, we will place this ongoing event on hold. Please let us know if you have any feedback on how to better meet the congregation's need for fellowship at this time. Direct all feedback to Fr. Arboleda at FrGAA@StMattSav.org.


F. 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.

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


G. “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 next interim drawing will be announced on Sunday, July 4.


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 Dismissal

[BCP, p. 366]


Let us go forth into the world, rejoicing in the power of the Spirit!

Thanks be to God!





The Parish Prayer List


Prayer List: Martha Avery, Donald Baynes, Ronald Baynes, Shirley Clinton Bonaparte, Zavier Bradley, Myrtle Brow-Hollis, Christine Brown, Quinton Bruce, Jacquelyn Bryant, Genella Chamberlain, Taylor Blue, Annie Colbert, Lazola Cope, Alice Dailey, Beryl Dandy, Mark Dashiell, Brittany Dawson, Roland Dixon, Imani Ferguson, Ruby Fernandez, Harry Frazier, Karin Garcia, Colin Gentle, Angie Glover, Charles Gordon, Amanda Green, Jocelyn Bryant Harden, Loretta Harmond, Marva Harris, Enoch Henderson, Charles E. Hines, Kenneth Howard, Terri Howard, Anne Hudson, Lucy Hugging, Dale Hundley, Jared Hundley, Tracy Hundley, Janice C. Jackson, 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, Barbara McCary, Bette Milledge, John "Butch" Mitchell, Hollie Moultrie, Patricia Murry, Russell Nails, Dorothy Neal, Jabbaar Newton, Jameel Newton, Glenzy Payne, Robert Payne, Willie Mae Robinson, Paul Rockwell, Helen Scroggins, Dison Washington Slaughter, James Small, Gwendolyn Smith, Willie Stephens, Gon Trimble, Ed Vista, Lori Ward, Gertrude Washington, and Noel Wheeler


Birthdays: Loretta Harmond (7/11), Nicholas Maiorano (7/11), Mary Bonaparte (7/12), Margaret Anne Pearson (7/17), Grace Luten (7/17) and Jayda Newton (7/17)


Wedding Anniversaries: N/A


Recent Deaths: Raleigh Bryant (12/18/20)

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), African American Heritage Hymnal (AAHH) and other sources cited. The Scripture readings are from the New Revised Standard Version (NRSV) of the Bible.


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