Dear St. Matthew’s Church Family,
I hope you are having a healthy and Happy Thanksgiving weekend. It’s the time of year when we are prompted to reflect on life’s blessings and give thanks to God. We have so much for which to be thankful. It’s so easy to focus on what’s wrong in the world; we fail to notice what’s good – in our own lives and in the world around us. If you haven’t done so already, take time this weekend to practice thanks-giving. And don’t let the practice of gratitude stop when the Thanksgiving leftovers are finished.
On Sunday morning, we will conclude our With Grateful Hearts sermon series. The final message is entitled Cultivating Gratitude. The Scripture readings will be Psalm 95:1-7 and Matthew 6:31-33. Please plan to join us if you are in town.
Unfortunately, we have been having some problems with our website this week. Hopefully it will be up and running soon. I apologize for any inconvenience.
The United Methodist Men (UMM) will begin selling high-quality Christmas trees as soon as the trees arrive and are set-up. Unfortunately, due to unforeseen weather and ground conditions at the tree farm, delivery of the trees may be delayed. They should arrive soon. Please support the UMM if you are able and if you can spare a few hours, the UMM are looking for help selling trees. Go to this link to sign-up to help.
The Christian season of Advent (the four weeks before Christmas that call us to prepare to celebrate the birth of Jesus) officially begins December 2. But Advent programs and events start next week. In the weekly announcements and Sunday’s bulletin, you can find more information about Wednesday evening Advent services, the United Methodist Women’s Christmas Brunch, and the Family Advent Celebration. Our theme for Advent and Christmas this year is Christmas Through the Eyes of Mary. We’ll read some familiar stories and discover that there are many lessons to learn from Mary’s life. This is a wonderful time of year – and many people in our community have an increased desire to connect with the meaning of the season. Someone you know may be ready for an invitation from you to come and hear the Good News about the life-changing power of God’s love and grace. Ask God to guide you to someone who needs to experience the beauty and wonder of Christmas this year.
Finally, thank you to all who have turned in a 2019 Estimate of Giving (EOG). If you have not returned your EOG, please do so as soon as possible. Your commitment is an expression of gratitude, praise and worship to God – they represent a sacrifice you make both to honor God and to invest in God’s work at St. Matthew’s So far, we’ve received 159 EOG’s for approximately $695,000. We need to hear from everyone who considers St. Matthew’s to be their church home and hope to receive a minimum of 260 EOG’s. When it’s up and running again, you can go to our website and use the Give link to download a form, complete your EOG, and/or sign-up for online giving. Remember: online giving saves church resources and makes sure you can fulfill your commitment when you are traveling. Many people find online giving helps them grow in their stewardship. Don’t forget that if you use our automatic online giving service, it must be reauthorized every year.
I look forward to seeing you on Sunday.