• Fr. Guillermo A. Arboleda

Sunday Worship for November 21, 2021


The Holy Eucharist

The Last Sunday after Pentecost: Christ the King (Proper 29B, Track 2)

November 21, 2021


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

Sunday, November 21, at 9:30 a.m. (or anytime afterward)





The Holy Eucharist: Rite II



The Word of God



Hymn #494: Crown Him With Many Crowns

[Verses 1-5]


1 Crown him with many crowns,

the Lamb upon his throne;

Hark! how the heavenly anthem drowns

all music but its own;

awake, my soul, and sing of him

who died for thee,

and hail him as thy matchless King

through all eternity.


2 Crown him the Son of God

before the worlds began,

and ye, who tread where he hath trod,

crown him the Son of man;

who every grief hath known

that wrings the human breast,

and takes and bears them for his own,

that all in him may rest.


3 Crown him the Lord of life,

who triumphed over the grave,

and rose victorious in the strife

for those he came to save;

his glories now we sing,

who died, and rose on high,

who died, eternal life to bring,

and lives that death may die.


4 Crown him of lords the Lord,

who over all doth reign,

who once on earth, the incarnate Word,

for ransomed sinners slain,

now lives in realms of light,

where saints with angels sing

their songs before him day and night,

their God, Redeemer, King.


5 Crown him the Lord of heaven,

enthroned in worlds above;

crown him the King,to whom is given,

the wondrous name of Love.

Crown him with many crowns,

as thrones before him fall,

crown him, ye kings, with many crowns,

for he is King of all.


Words: Matthew Bridges, Public Domain.

Music: Diademata, George Job Elvey, Public Domain; desc. Richard Proulx © 1970 Augsburg Publishing House.

Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE #84203. 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, 236]

The Lord be with you.

And also with you.

Let us pray:


Almighty and everlasting God, whose will it is to restore all things in your well-beloved Son, the King of kings and Lord of lords: Mercifully grant that the peoples of the earth, divided and enslaved by sin, may be freed and brought together under his most gracious rule; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.


A Reading from the Book of the Prophet Daniel (7:9-10, 13-14)


As I watched,

thrones were set in place, and an Ancient One took his throne,

his clothing was white as snow, and the hair of his head like pure wool;

his throne was fiery flames, and its wheels were burning fire.

A stream of fire issued and flowed out from his presence.

A thousand thousands served him, and ten thousand times ten thousand stood attending him.

The court sat in judgment, and the books were opened.


As I watched in the night visions,


I saw one like a human being coming with the clouds of heaven.

And he came to the Ancient One and was presented before him.

To him was given dominion and glory and kingship,

that all peoples, nations, and languages should serve him.

His dominion is an everlasting dominion that shall not pass away,

and his kingship is one that shall never be destroyed.

The Word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God.


Psalm 93

[BCP, p. 722]

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

1 The Lord is King; he has put on splendid apparel; * the Lord has put on his apparel and girded himself with strength.


2 He has made the whole world so sure * that it cannot be moved;


3 Ever since the world began, your throne has been established; * you are from everlasting.


4 The waters have lifted up, O Lord, the waters have lifted up their voice; * the waters have lifted up their pounding waves.


5 Mightier than the sound of many waters, mightier than the breakers of the sea, * mightier is the Lord who dwells on high.


6 Your testimonies are very sure, * and holiness adorns your house, O Lord, for ever and for evermore.



A Reading from the Revelation to St. John the Divine (1:4b-8)

Grace to you and peace from him who is and who was and who is to come, and from the seven spirits who are before his throne, and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth.


To him who loves us and freed us from our sins by his blood, and made us to be a kingdom, priests serving his God and Father, to him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.


Look! He is coming with the clouds; every eye will see him,

even those who pierced him; and on his account all the tribes of the earth will wail.

So it is to be. Amen.


“I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.


The Word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God



The People stand for the reading of the Gospel.

The Holy Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ According to St. John (18:33-37)

Glory to you, Lord Christ.


Pilate entered the headquarters again, summoned Jesus, and asked him, “Are you the King of the Jews?” Jesus answered, “Do you ask this on your own, or did others tell you about me?” Pilate replied, “I am not a Jew, am I? Your own nation and the chief priests have handed you over to me. What have you done?” Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not from this world. If my kingdom were from this world, my followers would be fighting to keep me from being handed over to the Jews. But as it is, my kingdom is not from here.” Pilate asked him, “So you are a king?” Jesus answered, “You say that I am a king. For this I was born, and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone who belongs to the truth listens to my voice.”

The Gospel of the Lord.

Praise to you, Lord Christ.



The Sermon

“The World is About To Turn” by Fr. Guillermo A. Arboleda


This Last Sunday after Pentecost, the last Sunday in the church calendar, has come to be called “Christ the King Sunday.” Before we begin the church year anew next Sunday (with the 4-week season of Advent, preparing for Christmas), we take time to meditate together on what it means for Jesus Christ to be the King of kings and Lord of lords. There are lots of metaphors and images for God used in Scripture and throughout Church history, but “King” is one of the most enduring.


In the ancient world in which the Bible was written, kings were at the very center of nearly every part of society. Obviously, they were political leaders; they produced money, collected taxes, organized the government, and led the military. Kings were also military leaders: they were supposed to be warriors, more than just symbolic commanders-in-chief, they were literally responsible for leading their troops out into battle if there was a war. Kings also served as final judges in disputes between citizens; it’s something like how the US Supreme Court has the final say in interpreting the law of the land. But beyond what we normally think of as political, kings in ancient times were also important religious leaders. In Israel and Judah, they worked closely with the priests to organize and lead worship for major holy days. They could set the tone for how the nation worshipped, much like a rector can affect the worship culture of a parish.


As you might imagine, that is an enormous list of responsibilities for anyone. Kings were given all this power and influence, but they were still flawed human beings. And as they say, “absolute power corrupts absolutely.” Most kings could not manage all these duties very well. Most were cruel, spoiled, hedonistic, and/or corrupt (especially kings who inherited their crowns). This is true for the kings of Israel and Judah who we read about in the books of Samuel, Kings, and Chronicles. It’s also true for all the kings and emperors who would eventually conquer the Jewish people: Babylon, Persia, Greece, Rome, and more. The ancient world was organized around the iron fist leadership of kings, and most kings did terrible things with that power.


Political structures and styles of government have changed over time and space. We in the United States in the 21st century don’t live in a monarchy. But we still understand all the ways that selfish, corrupt, and/or incompetent leadership can hurt people. We know that even political leaders with the best of intentions screw up. We know that human kings and queens and prime ministers and presidents are deeply flawed. Their leadership has created and/or failed to solve many of the injustices and problems that we live with in human society.


And that’s why we look for a new king. On Christ the King Sunday, we celebrate that Jesus is the leader we’ve been waiting for. Psalm 93 teaches, “The LORD [Jesus] is king … He has made the whole world so sure * that it cannot be moved; Ever since the world began, your throne has been established; * you are from everlasting” (Ps 93:1-3). Jesus Christ is the true king who has ruled since the world began. He is ultimately in charge and will keep us steady no matter what earthly kings and kingdoms decide to do, no matter what great tragedies befall us. Despite it all, Jesus is King.


Revelation makes it even clearer by calling Jesus the “ruler of the kings of the earth” (Rev 1:5). All the kings and presidents and senators and judges who we deal with on earth will one day submit to Jesus as their ruler and king. That’s what we mean when we say he is “King of kings” and “Lord of lords.” Jesus uses the capital K and all the earthly rulers are lowercase. Revelation paints a picture for us of Jesus ruling justly over the earth so that things are finally set right. We cannot trust regular people to lead us toward justice and peace, but King Jesus can. When Jesus takes his throne on that last great day, this world of upside down ethics and morals will finally be turned right-side up.


Jesus rules differently than any human king or president. Most kings rule from a throne of great power meant to intimidate all who approach them. But Jesus rules from three thrones. His first throne was the manger in which he was born as a lowly peasant baby on Christmas morning. Jesus did not enter the world like a prince to national celebrations, but to no fanfare at all, in the trough where the animals eat. Jesus’ second throne was the Cross, on which he was crowned with thorns. There, Pontius Pilate labeled him “King of the Jews” as he hung, bled, and died the torturous death of a traitor. From the Cross, Jesus has the perspective of all who suffer under the hand of evil, oppressive rulers. His third throne is in the clouds as he rules and reigns right now, and will rule on the Great Day of Judgment. There he rules righteously, justly, and peaceably because he first ruled from the manger and the Cross. That’s how King Jesus demonstrates his Divinity to us.


Thankfully, Revelation is not only about a far-off future when God will fix things for us. It’s also about how we as a community of Jesus-followers, filled with God’s Holy Spirit, should live here and now. Jesus is King of kings, and he has “made us [Christians] to be a kingdom, priests serving his God and Father” (Rev 1:6). That doesn’t just include ordained priests like me. All Christians are called to serve and thus take part in Jesus’ rule as King. That means we are called to make the world more like that Kingdom that Jesus will establish: more just, more fair, more loving. We are called to stand in opposition to greed, selfishness, and corruption in government, the church, or anywhere else.


When we proclaim together that Jesus Christ is the King, we are asserting that the world needs to change. Things are not good enough now because we know that there is suffering all around us, and even right here in our community. Some of it can’t be avoided, but a lot of it can be. Jesus promises us that under his reign, the world will turn and transform into something more loving and beautiful than we can imagine. But Jesus is also calling us to live in that loving, liberating, and life-giving way right now. By the power of the Holy Spirit, we can. Christ the King is with us.


There is a hymn written in the 1990s that I first heard a few years ago that speaks to this very idea. Because Jesus is King, the world will change dramatically for the better. The song is called “Canticle of the Turning” by Rory Cooney. The refrain goes like this: “My heart will sing of the day you bring / Let the fires of your justice burn / Wipe away all tears for the dawn draws near / And the world is about to turn” (Evangelical Lutheran Worship #723). May King Jesus keep turning our world until it is right-side up. Amen.


Bibliography



LEV #96: He is King of Kings

[Verses 1-2]


REFRAIN:

He is King of kings,

He is Lord of Lords;

Jesus Christ, the first and last

no man works like Him.


1 He built his throne up in the air

no man works like Him;

And called the saints from ev’erwhere

no man works like Him. [REFRAIN]


2 I was but young when I begun

no man works like Him;

But now my race is almost won

no man works like Him. [REFRAIN]


Words: Traditional, Public Domain.

Music: Negro Spiritual, Public Domain; arr. Horace Clarence Boyer © 1992 Horace Clarence Boyer, Church Publishing, Inc.

Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE #89814. 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 our neighbors experiencing homelessness, that they may find safety and shelter, and 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, Christine Brown, Jacqueline Bryant, Lazola Cope, Annie Bell Greer, Loretta Harmond, Marva Harris, Genelle Joseph and her children, Whitney Kennedy, Sada Maxwell, Craig Maxwell, Jameel Newton, Mackenzie Orth, Helen Scroggins, and the Townsend family; 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 DeLeah Blake (11/21), Olivia Jones (11/21), Chloe Pennamon (11/22), and Joenelle Gordon (11/24) on their birthdays; for Shirley & Joe Bonaparte (11/27) on their wedding anniversary; and for any other thanksgivings 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 Rebecca McNicoll, Gon Trimble, and 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.


The Celebrant concludes with a collect:

O God, you made us in your own image and redeemed us through Jesus your Son: Look with compassion on the whole human family; take away the arrogance and hatred which infect our hearts; break down the walls that separate us; unite us in bonds of love; and work through our struggle and confusion to accomplish your purposes on earth; that, in your good time, all nations and races may serve you in harmony around your heavenly throne; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 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.


2022 Giving Campaign: The 2022 Giving Campaign has just ended, but we have fallen short of our giving goals for 2022 General Operations. We need to raise at least $150,000 toward operations to have a balanced budget, and we are less than 50% of the way there. There are two main ways you can help:

  1. If you forgot to submit your giving estimate, you can still do so using the online form below. You can also request a paper form from our office. Only about half of our regular pledgers submitted a giving estimate this year, so we would love to hear from the rest of you!

  2. If you already submitted a giving estimate, it's not too late to adjust your estimate to reduce your gifts toward restricted funds and increase your gifts to general operations. Please contact Office@StMattSav.org to make any desired changes.

The Online 2022 Giving Estimate: https://tinyurl.com/StMattSav2022

Click here to learn more about how and why to give to St. Matthew's.

Ascribe to the Lord the honor due his Name; bring offering and come into his courts. [Psalm 96:8; see BCP, p. 376]

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



LEV #157: Revive Us Again

[Verses 1-4]


1 We praise thee, O God,

For the son of thy love,

For Jesus who died

And is now gone above.


REFRAIN:

Hallelujah! Thine the glory,

Hallelujah! Amen,

Hallelujah! Thine the glory,

Revive us again.


2 We praise thee, O God,

For thy spirit of light,

Who has shown us our Savior,

And scattered our night. [REFRAIN]


3 All glory and praise

To the lamb that was slain,

Who has borne all our sins

And has cleansed ev’ry stain. [REFRAIN]


4 Revive us again,

Fill each heart with thy love,

May each soul be rekindled

With fire from above. [REFRAIN]

Words: William P. MacKay, Public Domain.

Music: John H. Husband, Public Domain.

Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE #94980. All rights reserved.



AAHH #651: Doxology

[See also Hymn # 380, v. 3]


Praise God, from whom all blessings flow;

Praise Him, all creatures here below;

Praise Him above, ye heav'nly host;

Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.

Amen.

Words: Thomas Ken, Public Domain.

Music: Old 100th, attributed to Louis Bourgeois, Public Domain.

Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE #84260. 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. ...


The Celebrant adds one of the appointed prefaces.


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, 407]


Alleluia! Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us;

Therefore let us keep the feast. Alleluia!


LEV # 269:

Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world:

Have mercy on us.

Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world:

Have mercy on us.

Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world:

Grant us peace.


[Words: Public Domain. Music: Lena McLin © 1972-1993 General Words and Music Co., reprinted from Eucharist of the Soul. Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE #100355. All Rights Reserved.]


The Gifts of God for the people of God.



The Celebration Hymnal #459: We Remember You

[Repeat as needed]


As we drink this cup, we worship You;

As we eat this bread, we honor You;

And we offer You our lives

As You have offered Yours for us.

We remember all You've done for us;

We remember Your covenant with us;

We remember and worship You, O Lord.

We remember and worship You, O Lord.

Words: Kirk Dearman © 1988 Maranatha! Music.

Music: Kirk Dearman © 1988 Maranatha! Music.

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. Thanksgiving Day Worship Only Online On Facebook: On Thanksgiving Day, Thursday, November 25, there will be an online-only Morning Prayer video available on Facebook at 9:30 AM. This will look and feel like the videos we made for most of 2020 when there were no in-person worship gatherings. Please remember to like, comment, and share this video with others who might want to worship with us for Thanksgiving.


B. Advent & Christmas 2021-2022 Worship Schedule: Please see our full worship schedule for the seasons of Advent and Christmas below. All Services are both in-person and live-streamed to our Facebook page:

  • 11/28, 12/5, 12/12, 12/19: Sundays in Advent - Holy Eucharist at 9:30 AM

  • Friday, 12/24: Christmas Eve - Holy Eucharist with Pop-up Pageant at 7:00 PM

  • Saturday, 12/25: Christmas Day - Rest and rejoice with your family!

  • Sunday, 12/26: 1st Sunday in Christmas - Lessons & Carols at 9:30 AM

  • Friday, 12/31: Eve of the Holy Name of Jesus / New Year's Eve / Watch Night - Holy Eucharist at 7:00 PM

  • Sunday, 1/2: 2nd Sunday in Christmas - Holy Eucharist at 9:30 AM

  • Thursday, 1/6: Epiphany of Our Lord Jesus Christ - Holy Eucharist at 6:00 PM

Check out the full schedule: https://www.stmattsav.org/post/advent-christmas-season-2021-2022


C. Conversations on Relationships and Race (CORR) on 12/12: St. Matthew’s is partnering with St. Thomas’ Episcopal Church, Isle of Hope UMC, and Asbury UMC to hold a monthly book club and dialogue series on race and relationships that will focus on a different book about racial injustice every month. Our hope is to continue learning more about others and ourselves, while also building deeper and meaningful relationships with our greater community across the barriers of denomination and race.


Our third gathering will be held on Sunday, December 12, 4:00-5:30 PM in person only at St. Matthew’s. Refreshments will be served outdoors (weather permitting) before gathering for discussion indoors.


Our current book is called Uncomfortable Conversations with a Black Man by Emmanuel Acho. Please read Chapters 7 through 15 (i.e., Part II and Part III) before the December meeting. You can purchase the book online or in most book stores (Amazon link).


D. EYCS Scholarship Fundraiser: Episcopal Youth and Children's Services (EYCS) is a scholarship fund managed by the Episcopal Diocese of Georgia to help Episcopal undergraduate students afford their education. EYCS is a very valuable scholarship fund that any college-bound Episcopal youth can apply for. Many St. Matthew's students have benefitted from EYCS funds over the years as they pursued their degrees. To learn more about the requirements click here.

Ordinarily, St. Matthew's Episcopal Church Women (ECW) hold the annual Silver Tea Fundraiser with the proceeds going to the EYCS, but due to COVID-19, the event is suspended. In order to continue our support to the EYCS we are asking for your financial support. Please make checks payable to "St. Matthew's ECW" and write "EYCS" on the memo line. The last date for contributions is November 30, 2021.


E. Care Packages for Needy Neighbors: As we all continue to struggle during the pandemic, and the neighborhood around St. Matthew's Church has been especially hard-hit. We want to respond to the immediate needs of our neighbors by building care packages we can distribute to anyone who asks for help, especially those experiencing homelessness. You can help support this initiative by donating individual size packages any or all of the following:

  • Gallon-size Zipper Bags

  • Bottled Water

  • Non-perishable snacks

  • Disposable Washcloths

  • Travel size First Aid Kit

  • Travel size Facial Tissue

  • Travel size Toothbrush and Toothpaste

  • Travel size Hand Sanitizer, 2 fl. oz.

  • Travel size Deodorant

  • Canned foods with pull tab

  • Packs of Gum

Some of these care packages will be kept on site at St. Matthew's for local distribution, but the majority will be donated to Emmaus House, our partner ministry for people experiencing homelessness in downtown Savannah. If you would like to serve our unhoused neighbors in other ways, Emmaus House is now accepting volunteers to serve breakfast on weekdays from 7:30-9:30 AM. Register today: https://www.unitedministriessavannah.org/volunteer


F. Upcoming Dates for Baptisms & Confirmations: Holy Baptism is available to anyone at any age who has not already been baptized. Confirmation or Reception is available for teens and adults who would like to make a mature commitment to The Episcopal Church. Baptisms can be performed on almost any Sunday or feast day based on your family's schedule. Confirmations, Receptions, and Renewals of Baptismal Vows must take place when a Bishop is present. The Right Rev. Frank Logue, Bishop of Georgia, will hold his next visitation to St. Matthew's on Sunday, January 16, 2022. If you are interested in taking any of these next steps in your faith journey, please contact Fr. Arboleda by cell phone or email (FrGAA@StMattSav.org).


G. T/W/Th Evening Prayer via Zoom: On Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays, St. Matthew's invites you to pray Evening Prayer over Zoom. The video will continue to stream to Facebook Live at 5:00 PM. Please join the Zoom call by 4:55 PM. Otherwise, watch the prayer service as you have been on Facebook Live.

NOTE: There will be no Evening Prayer videos on November 23-25, 2021, while Fr. Arboleda is on Thanksgiving vacation. Evening Prayer blog posts will be available to read on our website and Facebook page.


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