• Fr. Guillermo A. Arboleda

Sunday Worship for March 7, 2021


The Holy Eucharist: Liturgy of the Word

3rd Sunday in Lent (Year B) March 7, 2021


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

Sunday, March 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.


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 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 Penitential Order



Hymn #145: Now Quit Your Care

[Verses 1-3]


1 Now quit your care and anxious fear and worry

For schemes are vain and fretting brings no gain

Lent calls to prayer, to trust and dedication

God brings new beauty nigh

Reply, reply, reply with love to Love Most High

Reply, reply, reply with love to Love Most High


2 To bow the head in sackcloth and in ashes,

Or rend the soul, such grief is not Lent's goal

But to be led to where God's glory flashes

His beauty to come near

Make clear, make clear, make clear where truth and light appear

Make clear, make clear, make clear where truth and light appear


3 For is not this the fast that I have chosen?

The prophet spoke, To shatter every yoke

Of wickedness the grievous bands to loosen,

Oppression put to flight

To fight, to fight, to fight till every wrong's set right

To fight, to fight, to fight till every wrong's set right


Words: Percy Dearmer, alt., © 1964, Oxford University Press.

Music: Quittez, Pasteurs, French carol; harm. Martin Fallas Shaw, Public Domain.

Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE #13193. All rights reserved.



Opening Sentences

[BCP, p. 351]


Bless the Lord who forgives all our sins.

God's mercy endures forever. Amen.



The Decalogue

[BCP, p. 350]

Hear the commandments of God to his people:

I am the Lord your God who brought you out of bondage. You shall have no other gods but me. Amen. Lord have mercy.


You shall not make for yourself any idol. Amen. Lord have mercy.


You shall not invoke with malice the Name of the Lord your God. Amen. Lord have mercy.


Remember the Sabbath day and keep it holy. Amen. Lord have mercy.


Honor your father and your mother. Amen. Lord have mercy.


You shall not commit murder. Amen. Lord have mercy.


You shall not commit adultery. Amen. Lord have mercy.


You shall not steal. Amen. Lord have mercy.


You shall not be a false witness. Amen. Lord have mercy.


You shall not covet anything that belongs to your neighbor. Amen. Lord have mercy.



Confession of Sin

[BCP, p. 351]


Jesus said, "The first commandment is this: Hear, O Israel: The Lord your God is the only Lord. Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength. The second is this: Love your neighbor as yourself. There is no commandment greater than these."

[Mark 12:29-31]


If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. But if we confess our sins, God, who is faithful and just, will forgive our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

[1 John 1:8-9]


Since we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus, the Son of God, let us with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.

[Hebrews 4:14,16]


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.



Kyrie Eleison

[BCP, p. 356]


Lord, have mercy.

Christ, have mercy.

Lord, have mercy.


The Collect of the Day

[BCP, p. 357, 218]

The Lord be with you.

And also with you.

Let us pray:


Almighty God, you know that we have no power in ourselves to help ourselves: Keep us both outwardly in our bodies and inwardly in our souls, that we may be defended from all adversities which may happen to the body, and from all evil thoughts which may assault and hurt the soul; 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 Exodus (20:1-17)

Then God spoke all these words:


I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery; you shall have no other gods before me.


You shall not make for yourself an idol, whether in the form of anything that is in heaven above, or that is on the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I the Lord your God am a jealous God, punishing children for the iniquity of parents, to the third and the fourth generation of those who reject me, but showing steadfast love to the thousandth generation of those who love me and keep my commandments.


You shall not make wrongful use of the name of the Lord your God, for the Lord will not acquit anyone who misuses his name.


Remember the sabbath day, and keep it holy. For six days you shall labour and do all your work. But the seventh day is a sabbath to the Lord your God; you shall not do any work—you, your son or your daughter, your male or female slave, your livestock, or the alien resident in your towns. For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but rested the seventh day; therefore the Lord blessed the sabbath day and consecrated it.


Honor your father and your mother, so that your days may be long in the land that the Lord your God is giving you.


You shall not murder.


You shall not commit adultery.


You shall not steal.


You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.


You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, or male or female slave, or ox, or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor.

The Word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God


Psalm 19

[BCP, p. 606]

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

1 The heavens declare the glory of God, * and the firmament shows his handiwork.


2 One day tells its tale to another, * and one night imparts knowledge to another.


3 Although they have no words or language, * and their voices are not heard,


4 Their sound has gone out into all lands, * and their message to the ends of the world.


5 In the deep has he set a pavilion for the sun; * it comes forth like a bridegroom out of his chamber; it rejoices like a champion to run its course.


6 It goes forth from the uttermost edge of the heavens and runs about to the end of it again; * nothing is hidden from its burning heat.


7 The law of the Lord is perfect and revives the soul; * the testimony of the Lord is sure and gives wisdom to the innocent.


8 The statutes of the Lord are just and rejoice the heart; * the commandment of the Lord is clear and gives light to the eyes.


9 The fear of the Lord is clean and endures for ever; * the judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether.


10 More to be desired are they than gold, more than much fine gold, * sweeter far than honey, than honey in the comb.


11 By them also is your servant enlightened, * and in keeping them there is great reward.


12 Who can tell how often he offends? * cleanse me from my secret faults.


13 Above all, keep your servant from presumptuous sins; let them not get dominion over me; * then shall I be whole and sound, and innocent of a great offense.


14 Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, * O Lord, my strength and my redeemer.



A Reading from the First Letter of St. Paul to the Corinthians (1:18-25)

The message about the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. For it is written,

“I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and the discernment of the discerning I will thwart.”


Where is the one who is wise? Where is the scribe? Where is the debater of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? For since, in the wisdom of God, the world did not know God through wisdom, God decided, through the foolishness of our proclamation, to save those who believe. For Jews demand signs and Greeks desire wisdom, but we proclaim Christ crucified, a stumbling block to Jews and foolishness to Gentiles, but to those who are the called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. For God’s foolishness is wiser than human wisdom, and God’s weakness is stronger than human strength.


The Word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God


The Holy Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ According to St. John (2:13-22)

Glory to you, Lord Christ.

The Passover of the Jews was near, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. In the temple he found people selling cattle, sheep, and doves, and the money changers seated at their tables. Making a whip of cords, he drove all of them out of the temple, both the sheep and the cattle. He also poured out the coins of the money changers and overturned their tables. He told those who were selling the doves, “Take these things out of here! Stop making my Father’s house a marketplace!” His disciples remembered that it was written, “Zeal for your house will consume me.” The Jews then said to him, “What sign can you show us for doing this?” Jesus answered them, “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.” The Jews then said, “This temple has been under construction for forty-six years, and will you raise it up in three days?” But he was speaking of the temple of his body. After he was raised from the dead, his disciples remembered that he had said this; and they believed the scripture and the word that Jesus had spoken.

The Gospel of the Lord.

Praise to you, Lord Christ.



The Sermon

"Flipping Tables" by Fr. Guillermo A. Arboleda


The Ten Commandments are the most famous example of biblical law. One of our worship practices in Lent is to pray he Ten Commandments (also known as the Decalogue) at the beginning of this liturgy on Sundays. Some of us had to memorize the Ten Commandments before we could be confirmed into the Episcopal Church. They are so famous and well-known that we often neglect to look at them carefully.


Every human generation in every human culture is imperfect. As St. Paul reminds us, “All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). That means that every society has found ways to disobey, twist, and manipulate God’s commandments, to follow them imperfectly and often use them to the advantage of a select few.


Even if one follows the Ten Commandments to a T, the commandments themselves are flawed. They are culturally embedded in ancient Israel in a way that makes them inappropriate to other contexts. The version of the Decalogue we see in the Book of Common Prayer glosses over these issues, which is why we need to read the Bible directly. The most obvious ways that the Commandments are trapped by ancient Israelite culture are the two references to enslaved people.


Although the LORD is identified as “your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the land of slavery,” the commandments do not abolish slavery in Israelite society (Exodus 20:2). Slaves are entitled by the Fourth Commandment to rest on the Sabbath (20:10) and Israelite men are commended not to covet their neighbors enslaved people (20:17). At no point do the commandments state or imply that owning another human being is wrong.


This leads us to ask, Is this a matter of God tacitly approving slavery? Or is it an example of people twisting God’s intentions to fit their own depraved need for power, hierarchy, and domination? I lean toward the latter because the intention of God as proclaimed by most Hebrew Prophets and by the Son of God, Jesus Christ, is to liberate the captive and enslaved (e.g., Isaiah 61:1; Luke 4:18). Scripture is always in conversation with itself, and it is our duty to read and understand the whole of God’s Word so that we can see the overarching story of God’s love, life, and liberation.


It is obvious to us how inappropriate it is to assume that God approves slavery because it is present in the stories of the Bible. But for hundreds and thousands of years, this was not obvious to most believers. The Bible was wielded as a weapon, a tool of oppression that reinforced systems of enslavement, theft, domination, and trauma. These people read the letter of the commandments, but they missed the obvious ones: you shall not murder; you shall not steal, you shall not covet. Only a heart set on violence, theft, and greed is willing to abuse other people and deprive them of their God-given liberty. So we must be careful not to interpret these commandments too literally and plainly.


Likewise, we must be aware that we modern and postmodern people are not free from blindspots. There are always parts of society -- and even parts of our religious life -- that are deficient and immoral. Human beings living in a society can convince one another that just about anything is normal and acceptable. We can brainwash each other with groupthink so that we all agree not to raise a voice against something that an outsider would immediately recognize as an egregious sin.


Slavery was white American Christianity’s greatest moral blindspot for centuries. And that evolved into a white supremacist caste system known as Jim Crow. Even after the 1960s we still live in a society that is full of racial oppression, though we are a bit better at recognizing it collectively. The problem is that there is always something we are not seeing. Dominant, privileged groups tend to have the biggest blind spots, but all human beings miss something morally. None of us is perfectly loving, fair, and peaceful to all of our neighbors.


For so long, Christians of all races ignored the plight of women in a patriarchal society. For even longer, we Christians stifled, persecuted, and oppressed our Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer (LGBTQ+) siblings. Even though the United States’ populations has always been majority Christian, our society has had major blind spots as well. Our treatment of Indigenous (Native) Americans, undocumented immigrants, the incarcerated, soldiers and veterans, and more are all reprehensible. The crises of homelessness and poverty (in this very church’s neighborhood) should shake each of our consciences to the core every day. Our destruction of the earth and God’s creatures in the pursuit of money and comfort are also deplorable.


Human beings are adept at ignoring suffering, shoving down the uncomfortable emotions, and pressing forward. We take for granted that we’re more or less good people with good intentions. We mostly follow the law and obey the letter of God’s commandments. But we still can’t see how wrong we are in certain areas. That’s why we sometimes need Jesus to shake us to the core. We sometimes need God and God’s Prophets to drive evil out with a whip, flip some tables, and disrupt us in our religious complacency.


When Jesus drives away the money changers in the Temple, it is God-in-the-flesh critiquing the worship of God’s People. Jesus shows us that even faithful and well-intentioned people don’t always get it right. We can get so caught up in the mechanics of our religion, the letter of the law, that we miss God’s Spirit, God’s intention in our lives. We can fail to see that love and “justice and mercy and faith” are “the weightier matters of the law” (Matt 23:23).


Maybe I don’t need to remind you of how sinful the world is, how much pain and suffering consume humankind and all of God’s other creatures. But if not now, in Lent, when will we come face to face with this reality? When will we confront the brokenness inside each of us, and the brokenness that spills out into our whole human society?


Christians have been complacent for too long. We have been too willing to sit on the sidelines instead of fighting for God’s love, mercy, and justice. But with God’s help, we can be instruments of God’s peace. We can help God’s kingdom grow and blossom on this earth. We can be a part of God’s plan to set the world right, to drive away our evil thoughts, words, and deeds, and bring love, forgiveness, and equity to all. This is not easy work. We need to navigate other people and navigate ourselves, flawed as we all are. But if we dedicate ourselves to this way of Jesus, and continue to speak the truth to power, God’s will may be done on earth as it is in heaven. Amen.



LEV #28: Down At The Cross

[Verses 1, 3-4]


1 Down at the cross where my Savior died,

Down where for cleansing from sin I cried;

There to my heart was the blood applied;

Glory to His name.


REFRAIN:

Glory to His name.

Glory to His name!

There to my heart was the blood applied;

Glory to His name.


3 O, precious fountain that saves from sin,

I am so glad I have entered in;

There Jesus saves me and keeps me clean;

Glory to His name. [REFRAIN]


4 Come to this fountain so rich and sweet;

Cast your poor soul at the Savior’s feet;

Plunge in today, and be made complete;

Glory to His name. [REFRAIN]


Words: Elisha A. Hoffman, Public Domain.

Music: John H. Stockton, Public Domain.

Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE #SSS167. 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/1431]

Celebrant: Have mercy on us, O God, according to your loving kindness; in your great compassion, hear our prayers.


Intercessor: We pray for the whole church, all leaders and ministers, and all the holy people of God. Wash us through and through, And cleanse us from our sin.


We pray for our nation, for all the nations of the earth, and for all who govern and judge, especially for Joseph our President, Brian our governor, Van our mayor, Chester the chair of our County Commission, and Ann the Superintendent of our Public Schools. Purge us from our sin, And we shall be pure.


We pray for those who hunger, those who thirst, those who cry out for justice, those who live under the threat of terror, and those without a place to lay their head. Make them hear of joy and gladness, that those who are broken may rejoice.


We pray for those who are ill, those in pain, those under stress, and those who are lonely. Give them the joy of your saving help, and sustain them with your bountiful Spirit.


In this season of Lent we pray for those who prepare for baptism, and we pray that we all might be given the grace and strength to repent and grow closer to you, O God. Create in us clean hearts, O God, and renew a right spirit within us.


We pray for those who have died and who have entered into the land of eternal Light and your abiding peace, especially (Sandra Cruz, _____, and) those whom we remember now... Cast them not away from your presence, and take not your Holy Spirit from them.


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, 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.


We give thanks for Jaiden Jones (3/9), Sophia Maiorano (3/10), Jonas McAllister (3/11) and Reginald Robinson (3/12) on their birthdays.


Lord, in your mercy,

Hear our prayer.


Concluding prayer led by the Celebrant:

Lord Jesus, it was your will that your Father’s House would be a place of prayer for all people; grant us the strength and wisdom to be a people consumed with prayer and zeal for you, this day and always. 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

Hymn #685: Rock of Ages

[Verses 1-3]


1 Rock of ages, cleft for me,

let me hide myself in thee;

let the water and the blood

from thy wounded side which flowed,

be of sin the double cure,

cleanse me from its guilt and power.


2 Should my tears for ever flow,

should my zeal no languor know,

all for sin could not atone;

thou must save, and thou alone;

in my hand no price I bring,

simply to thy cross I cling.


3 While I draw this fleeting breath,

when mine eyelids close in death,

when I rise to worlds unknown

and behold thee on thy throne,

Rock of ages, cleft for me,

let me hide myself in thee.

Words: Augustus Montague Toplady, alt., Public Domain.

Music: Toplady, Thomas Hastings, Public Domain.

Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE #95011. 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. 11]


Let us bow down before the Lord.


Look mercifully on this your family, Almighty God, that by your great goodness they may be governed and preserved evermore; through Christ our Lord. 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 - 3/7/21


A. Church Re-Gathering Survey: As new coronavirus cases fall and more people receive vaccinations, the Vestry of St. Matthew's and our COVID-19 Task Force are planning for an eventual return to in-person worship gatherings. As part of our discernment, we need your help. Please complete the online COVID-19 In-Person Worship Survey: https://forms.gle/tkuem9mf5oZnJNzi9.


The more responses we get, the sooner we can make a decision about when and how in-person worship services at St. Matthew's will be available to the public. Please note that we will continue to offer online worship options during and after the pandemic. Even if you do not feel comfortable returning to an in-person gathering, there will still be worship videos every Sunday on Facebook Live.


B. 2020 Giving Statements Now Available: This week, St. Matthew's mailed out Giving Statements to all individuals and families who contributed financially to St. Matthew's mission and ministry in the year 2020. If these do not arrive by next week, feel free to contact the Office to pick up a hard copy or receive your statement electronically. If you notice a discrepancy on your statement when compared with your own records, please also let the Church Secretary know at Office@StMattSav.org or (912) 234-4440.


C. Bookkeeper Resigns: Our Bookkeeper, Frankie Smith, has resigned from his post in an effort to focus on his graduate studies at Savannah State University. We are sad to see him go and wish him the best as he pursues an education.


We are again fielding candidates for this open 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 3/14: Join us for virtual coffee hour over Zoom this Sunday at 10:30 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 10:30 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


F. Annual Meeting & Annual Report ONLINE: On January 31, 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.


G. 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


H. 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.


I. 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


J. “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, 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: Jaiden Jones (3/9), Sophia Maiorano (3/10), Jonas McAllister (3/11) and Reginald Robinson (3/12)

Wedding Anniversaries: N/A


Recent Deaths: Sandra Cruz (3/2; cousin of Jessie Stevenson), 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://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/1/17/Christ_in_the_Wilderness_-_Ivan_Kramskoy_-_Google_Cultural_Institute.jpg

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