• Fr. Guillermo A. Arboleda

Sunday Worship on October 4, 2020


The Holy Eucharist: The Liturgy of the Word

18th Sunday After Pentecost (Proper 22, Year A) October 4, 2020


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

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



Preface


I am posting this worship service online because we at St. Matthew's Church in Savannah are unable to gather together in person this week. Due to the COVID-19 (novel coronavirus) outbreak, public health officials recommend avoiding large gatherings of people to avoid spreading the illness to more vulnerable people. Therefore, under the guidance of the Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Georgia, the Vestry has decided to keep our church building closed to all in-person gatherings.


At 9:30 a.m. on Sunday morning, I will broadcast the following worship service using Facebook Live at www.Facebook.com/StMattSav. After the service concludes, you can re-watch it at any time.


Today's service is the Liturgy of the Word (or the first part of the Holy Eucharist service we use on normal Sundays). This is for use at home while watching the live stream or reading the prayers when you cannot physically attend worship. Lay people may read the entirety of this service as printed.


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 Word of God


Hymn #518: Christ is Made the Sure Foundation


1 Christ is made the sure foundation,

Christ the head and cornerstone,

chosen of the Lord, and precious,

binding all the Church in one;

holy Zion's help for ever,

and her confidence alone.


2 All that dedicated city,

dearly loved of God on high,

in exultant jubilation

pours perpetual melody;

God the One in Three adoring

in glad hymns eternally.


3 To this temple, where we call thee,

come, O Lord of Hosts, today;

with thy wonted loving-kindness

hear thy servants as they pray,

and thy fullest benediction

shed within its walls alway.


4 Here vouchsafe to all thy servants

what they ask of thee to gain;

what they gain from thee, for ever

with the blessèd to retain,

and hereafter in thy glory

evermore with thee to reign.


Words: Latin, ca. 7th cent.; tr. John Mason Neale, alt.; Public Domain.

Music: Westminster Abbey, Henry Purcell, adapt.; desc. James Gillespie; Public Domain

Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE #84081. All rights reserved.



Opening Sentences

[BCP, p. 355]


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

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



The Collect for Purity

[BCP, p. 355]


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


Hymn S 280: Glory to God in the Highest

[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, 234]


The Lord be with you.

And also with you.

Let us pray:

Almighty and everlasting God, you are always more ready to hear than we to pray, and to give more than we either desire or deserve: Pour upon us the abundance of your mercy, forgiving us those things of which our conscience is afraid, and giving us those good things for which we are not worthy to ask, except through the merits and mediation of Jesus Christ our Savior; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

A Reading from Isaiah (5:1-7)


Let me sing for my beloved my love-song concerning his vineyard:

My beloved had a vineyard on a very fertile hill.

He dug it and cleared it of stones, and planted it with choice vines;

he built a watchtower in the midst of it, and hewed out a wine vat in it;

he expected it to yield grapes, but it yielded wild grapes.

And now, inhabitants of Jerusalem and people of Judah,

judge between me and my vineyard.

What more was there to do for my vineyard that I have not done in it?

When I expected it to yield grapes, why did it yield wild grapes?

And now I will tell you what I will do to my vineyard.

I will remove its hedge, and it shall be devoured;

I will break down its wall, and it shall be trampled down.

I will make it a waste; it shall not be pruned or hoed, and it shall be overgrown with briers and thorns;

I will also command the clouds that they rain no rain upon it.

For the vineyard of the LORD of hosts is the house of Israel,

and the people of Judah are his pleasant planting;

he expected justice, but saw bloodshed;

righteousness, but heard a cry!


The Word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God.

Psalm 80:7-14

[BCP, p. 703]

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

7 Restore us, O God of hosts; * show the light of your countenance, and we shall be saved.


8 You have brought a vine out of Egypt; * you cast out the nations and planted it.


9 You prepared the ground for it; * it took root and filled the land.


10 The mountains were covered by its shadow * and the towering cedar trees by its boughs.


11 You stretched out its tendrils to the Sea * and its branches to the River.


12 Why have you broken down its wall, * so that all who pass by pluck off its grapes?


13 The wild boar of the forest has ravaged it, * and the beasts of the field have grazed upon it.


14 Turn now, O God of hosts, look down from heaven; behold and tend this vine; * preserve what your right hand has planted.



A Reading from the Letter of St. Paul to the Philippians (3:4b-14)

If anyone else has reason to be confident in the flesh, I have more: circumcised on the eighth day, a member of the people of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew born of Hebrews; as to the law, a Pharisee; as to zeal, a persecutor of the church; as to righteousness under the law, blameless.


Yet whatever gains I had, these I have come to regard as loss because of Christ. More than that, I regard everything as loss because of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things, and I regard them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but one that comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God based on faith. I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection and the sharing of his sufferings by becoming like him in his death, if somehow I may attain the resurrection from the dead.


Not that I have already obtained this or have already reached the goal; but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. Beloved, I do not consider that I have made it my own; but this one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the heavenly call of God in Christ Jesus.


The Word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God.

LEV #114 / AAH #325: Every Time I Feel the Spirit


REFRAIN:

Every time I feel the Spirit

Moving in my heart, I will pray

Every time I feel the Spirit

Moving in my heart, I will pray


1 Upon the mountain, my Lord spoke

Out of His mouth came fire and smoke

Looked all around me, looked so fine

Asked my Lord if all was mine.


2 Jordan River chilly and cold Chills the body but not the soul There ain't but one train runs this track Runs to heaven, and runs right back.


Words: Negro Spiritual, Public Domain

Music: Negro Spiritual, Public Domain.

Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE #95026. All rights reserved.



The Holy Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ According to St. Matthew (21:33-46)

Glory to you, Lord Christ.

Jesus said, “Listen to another parable. There was a landowner who planted a vineyard, put a fence around it, dug a wine press in it, and built a watchtower. Then he leased it to tenants and went to another country. When the harvest time had come, he sent his slaves to the tenants to collect his produce. But the tenants seized his slaves and beat one, killed another, and stoned another. Again he sent other slaves, more than the first; and they treated them in the same way. Finally he sent his son to them, saying, ‘They will respect my son.’ But when the tenants saw the son, they said to themselves, ‘This is the heir; come, let us kill him and get his inheritance.” So they seized him, threw him out of the vineyard, and killed him. Now when the owner of the vineyard comes, what will he do to those tenants?” They said to him, “He will put those wretches to a miserable death, and lease the vineyard to other tenants who will give him the produce at the harvest time.”


Jesus said to them, “Have you never read in the scriptures:

‘The stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone;

this was the Lord’s doing, and it is amazing in our eyes’?


Therefore I tell you, the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a people that produces the fruits of the kingdom. The one who falls on this stone will be broken to pieces; and it will crush anyone on whom it falls.”


When the chief priests and the Pharisees heard his parables, they realized that he was speaking about them. They wanted to arrest him, but they feared the crowds, because they regarded him as a prophet.

The Gospel of the Lord.

Praise to you, Lord Christ.

The Sermon

“The Resurrected Cornerstone” by the Rev. Guillermo A. Arboleda


Today’s Gospel story is a direct continuation of last week’s. Jesus is still conversing with “the chief priests and elders of the people” in the Jerusalem temple (Matt 21:23). As we discussed then, he levied serious criticisms of them and their leadership. He accused them of being too preoccupied with keeping their power and influence to listen to the truth and do what is right. He accused them of being the kind of people who say they will do the right thing (to get brownie points from their supporters) but then fail to do it. They take the selfish, easy road rather than the difficult, righteous one. 


And unfortunately, their failures in leadership have real consequences. As the chief priest and elders of the people of Israel, they have significant religious and moral authority. They interpret God’s laws to the Jewish people. They organize the celebrations of festivals. They occasionally have the ears of Roman governors and tetrarchs. They have the ability to influence both popular opinion and the imperial government. And they seem to sacrifice the former (the people’s interests) for the sake of the latter (proximity to power). 


So Jesus tells this parable to teach them why they are wrong. He begins with a vineyard, and his description of the vineyard in verse 33 is a clear allusion to Isaiah 5:1-7, our Old Testament reading this morning. This allows us to understand the analogy a little more clearly since both Jesus and his highly educated hearers would have had Isaiah in mind. Isaiah 5:7 says, “The vineyard of the LORD of hosts is the house of Israel, and the people of Judah are his pleasant planting; he expected justice, but saw bloodshed; righteousness but heard a cry!”


So the owner of the vineyard in Jesus’ parable is the LORD God. The vineyard itself is the people of Israel and Judah, God’s chosen people throughout the Bible. And the vineyard is experiencing a crisis of justice. In Jesus’ story, however, there are new characters. There are the tenants who work on the vineyard, the slaves whom the owner sends to collect produce (i.e. rent), and the son of the owner. 


Let’s set aside all the metaphors for a second and hear the story on its own merits. A landowner who leases farmlands was a pretty common scenario in the 1st century (and not uncommon today). The slaves who came to collect the monthly or yearly produce should have been treated with some respect or dignity, but they were not. They were beaten, killed, and stoned (Matt 21:35). This happens twice before the landowner decides to send his son, who should be treated with the most respect as a direct emissary of the landowner. 


Within Jesus’ 1st Century cultural context, where honor and shame were incredibly important pieces of social capital, this was a reasonable move. If anything, the landowner is showing extreme patience, because he has every right to forcibly evict tenants who don’t pay their rent on time. But the landowner, who stands in for God, does not evict, but rather keeps trying to persuade the tenants to improve and to honor their commitments.


In the end, the son of the landowner--who we should read as Jesus, the Son of God--is killed unceremoniously in an act of violent mutiny (Matt 21:39). Instead of singing with the Christmas hymn, “O come, let us adore him,” the tenants cry out, “Come, let us kill him” (The Hymnal 1982, #83, “O Come, All Ye Faithful”; Matt 21:38). 


Then Jesus asks a pointed question: “Now when the owner of the vineyard comes, what will he do to those tenants?” (Matt 21:40). The chief priests and elders respond like most of us would. “He will put those wretches to a miserable death, and lease the vineyard to other tenants who will give him the produce at the harvest time” (Matt 21:41). The tenants have disrespected the landowner, stolen his goods, killed his slaves, and killed his child. How else could anyone respond but with swift retribution? Few would begrudge him seeking revenge and moving on to newer, more trustworthy tenants.


But here’s the kicker. According to Jesus, that’s the wrong answer.


Jesus replies, “Have you never read in the scriptures: ‘The stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone; this was the Lord’s doing and it is amazing in our eyes?’” (Matthew 21:42). The problem is that these chief priests and elders have gotten too close to the Empire. They have cozied up with those who pursue power and revenge for themselves and they have adopted an imperial view of justice. They have forgotten that God acts differently than people and that God invites us into a new way of life. They have allowed their proximity to earthly political power to overshadow their biblical imaginations. 


The kingdom of God doesn’t work like the kingdom of Caesar. God’s justice is not about destroying enemies but loving enemies. God’s justice doesn’t oppress, but it learns to embrace and include others. So when the stone is rejected, when Jesus is killed, God doesn’t retaliate and destroy the earth or even the people responsible. God turns the rejected one into a cornerstone for the new kingdom of God. God brings resurrection. God turns death into new life and invites everyone (really, everyone) into it.


The mindset of Caesar is not all that different from the mindset of America. The USA inherits its notions of justice, democracy, and governments from the Greeks and the Romans, after all. Our empire tends to embody the same ideals that Rome did: “might makes right;” “greed is good;” “law and order;” and so many others. But Jesus consistently rejects that ethic and points to a different way of life.


The options are not simply to dominate or to be dominated. Power does not have to be a zero-sum game. We can achieve justice without forgetting about the power of love and mercy. We can seek restoration and reparation without simply punishing our opponents. We can end oppression without becoming oppressors. And it’s all because we serve a God who faced death head-on and won. Our Savior conquered death, not through more death, but through resurrection. Jesus shows us new and creative ways of building a beloved community, based on God’s way of love, rather than human ways of hate. 


‘The stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone; this was the Lord’s doing and it is amazing in our eyes’” (Matthew 21:42). God has the power to raise Jesus Christ and you and me from the dead. What more amazing things will God have in store for us, if we will follow Jesus Christ, the cornerstone who makes all things new? Amen.


Bibliography



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 & Confession of Sin

[Adapted from Form VI, BCP, p. 392]

In peace, we pray to you, Lord God.

Silence, about 5 seconds.

For all people in their daily life and work;

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

For Donald, our president; Brian, our governor; Van, our mayor; Al, 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, Zavier Bradley, Raleigh Bryant, Christine Brown, Mark Case, Genella Chamberlain, Annie Colbert, Lazola Cope, Alice Dailey, Beryl Dandy, Mark Dashiell, Brittany Dawson, Imani Ferguson, Ruby Fernandez, Harry Frazier, Gary Gordon, 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, Frances T. Jones, Lori Jones, Robert L. Jones, Sr., Ronald Jones, Tonya Jones, Whitney Kennedy, Leonard Law, Jr., Ralph Lovett, Ryan Lovett, Tammie Lovett, Marcus Marzen, Joan Maty, Craig Maxwell, Sada Maxwell, Carmelita Maynard, Bette Milledge, Hollie Moultrie, Patricia Murry, Russell Nails, Dorothy Neal, Glenzy Payne, Robert Payne, Dison Washington Slaughter, James Small, Gwendolyn Smith, Willie Stephens, 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, especially for Kennyka Robinson (10/7), Kendra McAllister (10/9), Joseph Robinson (10/9), and Regina Robinson (10/9) on their birthdays; and other blessings 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, [especially Dean Williams] that they may have a place in your eternal kingdom, 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.


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 or a suitable Collect.


Almighty God have mercy on you, forgive you all your sins through our Lord Jesus Christ, strengthen you in all goodness, and by the power of the Holy Spirit keep you in eternal life. Amen.



The Peace

[BCP, p. 360]


The peace of the Lord be always with you.

And also with you.

Announcements

A. “Women in Genesis” Launches 10/18 at 11:00: The results of the Fall 2020 Christian Education Survey are in! (Check them out here: https://tinyurl.com/Fall2020Results). The new Adult Education course will be held virtually on Sunday mornings from 11:00 AM - 12:00 noon for 6 weeks from October 18 - November 22. (Note that this course for older teens and adults runs parallel to the Diocesan Godly Play for children, listed below.)


This course will survey the women of Genesis, the first book in the Old Testament / Hebrew Bible. While the Bible is predominantly written by men and through patriarchal, male biases, women are featured more often than is commonly known. The Rev. Dr. Wilda Gafney’s seminal work Womanist Midrash offers ancient and modern commentary on the women of Israel’s scriptures, highlighting their oft-neglected experiences, perspectives, and lessons for today. 


Learn more and register at https://tinyurl.com/WomeninGenesis.  


B. New Bookkeeper Job Description: St. Matthew's Episcopal Church is seeking a dedicated and self-motivated person to fill our open Bookkeeper position. The purpose of this role is to support the parish’s financial administration through reporting on the state of its finances faithfully, accurately, and regularly. This job is part-time for approximately 5-10 hours of work per week. The salary is negotiable based on experience.


Click here for the full job description.


If you are interested in the position, please email a cover letter and resume to Fr. Arboleda at FrGAA@StMattSav.org.


C. Children’s Godly Play @ 11 AM: This Sunday the Diocese will continue a series of virtual Godly Play offerings. Godly Play is a Montessori-based curriculum that focuses on telling stories using physical materials and allowing participants to play and work with the stories at their own level. 


This coming Sunday, October 4, the Rev. Canon Joshua Varner will host a Zoom call at 11:00 AM during which children (and their associated adults) can gather to hear the story of The Great Family and reflect on it together, sharing their ideas, and wonderings.


Last week's story is on the Diocese of Georgia FB Page. Learn more by subscribing to From the Field (https://gaepiscopal.org/from-the-field/). Please contact Canon Varner at  jvarner@gaepiscopal.org with your questions.


Godly Play Zoom Call:https://zoom.us/j/94185107730?pwd=RDlWNEpjVjMzSFdRZllOdnQzMXQwdz09#success


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

The winner will be announced on September 30, 2021. Winners do not need to be present to win.


In addition to the grand prize of the "Trip Around the World '' quilt, there will be interim raffles of seasonal quilt-type projects for no additional ticket purchase. Interim winners will still be eligible for the grand prize. The first interim drawing will be December 15, 2020.


Tickets will go on sale soon. More information forthcoming.


E. SAIJM Sacred Conversations: St. Matthew’s is collaborating with Savannah Area Interfaith Justice Ministry (SAIJM) to host a virtual “Sacred Conversations” meeting. We are trying to listen to as many church members as possible about their hopes and concerns about life in Savannah. We want to bring the voice of our people to this interfaith coalition as we discern what social justice solution we should pursue in 2021. The Sacred Conversation will be held virtually on Wednesday, October 28, at 7:00 PM. 


If you cannot attend at that time, or have trouble accessing video meetings, one of our St. Matthew’s Justice Ministry Team members can call you for a short one-on-one interview. We’ll compile all this data and report it to SAIJM in November as the next step in our ongoing listening and discernment process. 


Register for the Sacred Conversation here: https://forms.gle/iwRkHqE38kQFewvt7


F. (Re-)Watch The Voter Education Seminar: On Wednesday, September 2, St. Matthew's held a voter education seminar with Sharyl Sutton, Voter Education Coordinator for the Georgia Office of the Secretary of State. Feel free to watch or re-watch it any time to learn critical information about the upcoming General Election! https://www.facebook.com/stmattsav/videos/354012282670839


G. Virtual Coffee Hour 10/11: We will hold a virtual "Coffee Hour" over Zoom next Sunday (October 11), and again on every other Sunday at 10:30 AM. (Thank you to Mrs. Rachael Blue-Jones who is donating a professional Zoom login to the church for our use.)


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: Oct 11, 2020 10:30 AM Eastern Time (US and Canada)


Meeting ID: 825 7251 1175

Passcode: SEE e-NEWSLETTER


Dial by your location

+1 929 205 6099 US (New York)

Meeting ID: 825 7251 1175

Passcode: SEE e-NEWSLETTER


H. Weekly Worship Schedule: St. Matthew's Church building remains closed to in-person worship and all non-essential activities due to the COVID-19 Pandemic. The Vestry will monitor the public health data to determine when is the appropriate time to begin the Diocesan Phase 1 Re-Gathering Plan. We will maintain online worship options for the foreseeable future on Facebook Live video and in writing on our Blog. Many other updates are available via the Facebook page.


The worship schedule is as follows:

  1. Sundays - 9:30 Worship (You can find all of the upcoming Sunday and Holiday readings at http://www.lectionarypage.net.)

  2. Tuesdays - 5:00 Evening Prayer

  3. Wednesdays - 5:00 Evening Prayer

  4. Thursdays - 5:00 Evening Prayer


I. New Parish e-Newsletter: Check your email and read it if you haven't yet. If you did not receive it, then please go to our homepage (www.stmattsav.org) and scroll to the bottom of the page, where you can enter your email to sign up. The e-Newsletter includes our preliminary financial reports for the first two quarters of 2020 (January 1 - June 30). They are available via our new e-Newsletter.


J. Become a Video Reader or Singer: St. Matthew's is pre-recording Sunday services to ensure higher quality video and audio for our worshippers at home. This provides a new opportunity for church members to be a part of the service! Mrs. Pearson and I will reach out to parishioners about recording themselves reading Scripture lessons and/or the Prayers of the People for use in these Sunday videos. If you want to get involved, please email me about your interest at FrGAA@StMattSav.org.


K. Giving to St. Matthew's: Many people are feeling the economic impact of the COVID-19 crisis, including the church. We still need your support to pay our staff, pay our bills, and provide for these online live streams. If you pledged a donation in 2020 and are able, please continue making those contributions. If you have not pledged, please consider donating to St. Matthew’s now and in the future. 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.


The Offertory

[BCP, p. 377]


Walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself for us, an offering and sacrifice to God.(Ephesians 5:2)


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



Hymn #495: Hail, Thou Once Despisèd Jesus

1 Hail, thou once despisèd Jesus!

Hail, thou Galilean King!

Thou didst suffer to release us;

thou didst free salvation bring.

Hail, thou universal Savior,

bearer of our sin and shame!

By thy merit we find favor:

life is given through thy Name.


2 Paschal Lamb, by God appointed,

all our sins on thee were laid:

by almighty love anointed,

thou hast full atonement made.

All thy people are forgiven

through the virtue of thy blood:

opened is the gate of heaven,

reconciled are we with God.


3 Jesus, hail! enthroned in glory,

there for ever to abide;

all the heavenly hosts adore thee,

seated at thy Father's side.

There for sinners thou art pleading:

there thou dost our place prepare;

ever for us interceding,

till in glory we appear.


4 Worship, honor, power, and blessing

thou art worthy to receive;

highest praises, without ceasing,

right it is for us to give.

Help, ye bright angelic spirits,

all your noblest anthems raise;

help to sing our Savior's merits,

help to chant Emmanuel's praise!


Words: John Bakewell and Martin Madan, alt.; Public Domain

Music: In Babilone; Public Domain


The Lord’s Prayer

[BCP, p. 364]


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

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

The Blessing & Dismissal

[Enriching Our Worship 1, p. 71; BCP, p 366]


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 may God’s blessing be with you always. Amen.


Let us bless the Lord!

Thanks be to God!




Permissions: 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. Unless otherwise noted, the Scripture readings and quotations are from the New Revised Standard Version (NRSV) of the Bible


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