Since Consecration Sunday members offered 135 pledges amounting to $328,773 in financial gifts for the ministry of Christ in the Parish. This represents a weekly average of $46.83 per household. We encourage every member to make a pledge of financial support for 2019. Extra cards are available in the pews and lobby and may be placed in the offering basket or mailed into the church office.
The children of St. Matthew’s are preparing to present a Christmas Pageant again this year during the 3 p.m. Christmas Eve service, December 24, 2018. Toddlers through fifth graders will be donning costumes to portray the Nativity story with one narrator and one other small speaking part. Our pageant, Crooked Halos and Wiggly Sheep, will recount the events that occurred in Bethlehem. Costumes will be provided. One practice is scheduled for Saturday, December 8 in the afternoon. Sign-up sheets are currently being distributed through the Sunday School. If you have children who would like to participate in the pageant, please fill out one of these forms or contact Lynn Robinson at 215-628-3359 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
9:00 a.m. Dressing of the Creche
December 24 Christmas Eve
3:00 p.m. Family Eucharist and Christmas Pageant
5:00 p.m. Family Eucharist and Children’s Sermon
10:00 p.m. Festive Service
December 25 Christmas Day
10:00 p.m. Holy Eucharist with Carols
Altar Guild extends an invitation to anyone who would like to help arrange and organize the Christmas greens to contact Susan Ricciardi at 215-917-6670.
Preparation for the 2019 Solemn Communion Group Is Beginning
Children interested in joining this year’s group that will focus on the Holy Eucharist will have an opportunity to write their name on a holy card beginning on January 6 through January 20. These cards will be available on the prayer table in Mrs. Groben’s atria. While some of our children begin receiving communion at a young age, we offer this time for further learning about the Eucharist as a group experience for elementary school children. Typically, the participants are in third grade and up. Some older children who have not participated in the past may want to consider taking part this year, as along with those attending the Senior Atrium led by Judy Groben. This Solemn Communion preparation is aligned with the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd work and should complement and deepen the Sunday School experience as well as the worship experience.
Dates for Solemn Communion Preparation 2019:
January 6, 13, and 20, 2019 Interested participants write their names on holy cards in Mrs.Groben’s room
January 13 and January 20, 2019 Solemn Communion Interviews in Mrs. Groben’s room
January 27, 2019 Meeting for parents at 12:00 noon (Parish Hall)
January 30 First Wednesday evening meditation at the Robinson’s house (7 – 8:30 p.m.)
February 3 Bibles distributed during 10:30 worship service
February 6, February 13, February 20, February 27 Remaining Wednesday evening meditations
(7-8:30 pm at the Robinson’s house)
Parents are invited to attend the Wednesday evening events for a separate parent program.
March 1 Friday evening bread-baking activities at Saint Matthew’s (6:30 to 8:30 p.m.)
March 2 Saturday Solemn Communion Retreat
9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
4:00 p.m. White Garment Service
5:00 p.m. Dinner
March 3 Sunday Presentation of Solemn Communion Class (9:00 a.m.)
Amazon Smile: As the busy holiday shopping season approaches, please remember that you can designate St. Matthew’s to be the recipient of Amazon Smile charitable donations when shopping at Amazon. Simply go to www.smile.amazon.com, and designate St Matthews Episcopal Church as your charity under Your Account. Thank you!
Counters are needed to be part of a team of persons who tally the Sunday morning offerings. Please speak to Father Dave or Mary Waters if you can help.
The Adult Forum meets on Sunday’s at 9 a.m. in the Parish Hall. This is a member led group discussion on a variety of topics chosen by the group and is open to all. There will be no forum on December 23 and December 30.
Noonday Prayer & Lunch
New for this fall will be Tuesday noonday prayer followed by a luncheon. On the third Tuesday of each month, we will gather for a short service of noonday prayer after which everyone is invited to have lunch together. The prayer service is a wonderful way to spend your lunch worshipping the Lord. Since the luncheon is an informal gathering, we ask that everyone bring his or her own lunch. We will provide water, tea and coffee to drink.
Mattie Dixon Community Cupboard – Your donations of baked beans, canned sweet peas, boxed instant mashed potatoes, canned fruit, mixed fruit, pears, boxed snacks/crackers, peanut butter, coffee, tea, cocoa, boxed cereals, hot cereals (oatmeal), pancake mix and pancake syrup are needed for the Mattie Dixon Community Cupboard. Please bring these items to church and place them in the collection box located under the coat rack outside the kitchen.
Operation Bear Hug – Saint Matthew’s will once again participate in Operation Bear Hug on Christmas Eve. The goal of this project is to give each patient in the hospital a new stuffed bear and a card from the church letting them know they are remembered in prayer this Christmas Eve. This simple, kind act has made a powerful impact on patients, their families, hospital staff, and the young people from our church. We plan on distributing bears at Abington/Lansdale Hospital again this year. Everyone can help by bringing in new stuffed bears (no dogs, cats, etc. please) and placing them in the box in the hallway outside the kitchen door. Next, help will be needed getting the bears ready for delivery. Finally, we will need volunteers of all ages to deliver the bears. We will deliver them after 5 p.m. on Christmas Eve. Please contact Lisa Walsh, 215-491-9943 or email@example.com if you are interested. Thank you.
Monday Evening Bible Study
The group is studying Paul’s Letter to the Colossians. If you have been thinking of joining the study, now would be a good time to come. The group meets on the first and third Mondays of the month. Hope to see you there. Contact Lynn Robinson with any questions (215-628-3359.)
Discovery Bible Study
Offered every Thursday at 7:30 p.m. Contact Pam Dunlap, firstname.lastname@example.org for more information
Praying for Each Other
If you would like to be added to Sunday’s Prayers of the People, please call the Office, or email with your request. As always, late-breaking requests can be given to Father Dave on Sunday mornings. Names that we receive will be listed in the Sunday Bulletins for two weeks–unless you let us know to keep them on for another two-week period.
Men’s Breakfast: A gathering of men for breakfast and Bible reflection is normally offered on the third Saturday of each month in the September – May program year. Come to be nourished in body and spirit. The next breakfast is January 19. Contact the clergy for more information.
Youth Group is open to all middle and high school youth and their friends. We gather for two evenings each month, from 6:00 – 8:00 p.m. during the school year. Each evening includes dinner, an activity, and an informal time of prayer or Eucharist. Please contact the Assistant to the Rector, Jay Walton for more information.
Sunday December 23 – Christmas Party and Pollyanna Exchange: Tonight we will celebrate Christmas in a way only youth group can celebrate! Who can make the best Gingerbread House? Who will bring the best pollyanna gift that is recycled from their bedroom? Bring your friends for an evening that will surely include lots of laughter and joy.