Dear St. Matthew’s Family,

What a wonderful 50th Anniversary weekend! There was so much work put into it, and in the end it all felt worth it. Rain could have dampened our Family Fun Day, but it didn’t. I hear 110 hot dogs were eaten, and there were plenty of caricatures, face paintings, and dancing to go around. From the moment it started until the end there were bright faces everywhere you looked, and 51 backpacks got filled with much-needed supplies for the newly un-incarcerated. It was a joint effort for the planning and the staffing of the day—we even had Girl Scout Troop 539 from Woodbridge High School here to help out.

The Banquet at Old Hickory was lovely. Lots of friends from years past were there reconnecting, celebrating, and remembering. There were founding members and members who found St. Matthew’s during Covid. Pastors from all seasons. Heartfelt presentations by Gaye DeCesare, Chris Moessner, and Stephanie Bortner. The food was great, the cupcakes were even better, but the best part was the energy and enthusiasm around the event. Lots of big smiles, belly laughs, and simple joy. Another whole crew managed and re-managed and revised over and over all the details up until the moment the banquet started.

Then worship on Sunday with our now favorite artist, Pastor Paul Oman. The music, the energy, the wonder, the delight! So many people came together for this. All the musical efforts with the choir and the brass quartet put an exclamation point on the painting. Thanks to all the ushers and the tech team who all worked with a different layout of worship and adapted to all the needs that came our way. The property team and Altar Guild figured out all Pastor Paul needed to paint and how to put together an appropriate altar. A huge thank you to Gretchen and Daniel Wilcox for the beautiful custom-built liturgical furniture piece that we used as an altar; it’s a great addition for our future worship needs. What a pleasure to have Pastors Bohannon, Johns, and Zimmerer as part of our worship as well. Blessed memories as we look forward to all that is to come!

I didn’t name everyone, as I fear I will miss someone. As it is, I may have missed some aspect of what we did and what came together. But for now, for many great events and memories, thank you to everyone who did a little and a lot and helped the whole weekend multiply! Welcome 51!

With great delight,

Pastor Kirsten