St. Matthew's Episcopal Church, Sterling, Virginia

St. Matthew's Episcopal Church, Sterling, Virginia Service Times: Saturday, 5pm - Band Sunday, 8:00am Sunday, 9:30am - Band Sunday, 11am - Choir Nursery is provided at all services.

05/01/2019

Join Rev. Grant tomorrow night at Choolaah for WatCh. Dinner at 7pm and discussion from 7:30-8:30pm. Hope to see you there!

04/28/2019
04/28/2019
The Sterling police substation is being paved this week. Here at St. Matts we are happy to be able to share our parking ...
04/24/2019

The Sterling police substation is being paved this week. Here at St. Matts we are happy to be able to share our parking lot with their vehicles. Seems only fair since they so generously allow us to park in their lot on Sundays. #goodneighbors #community

Northern Virginia friends, please keep your eyes open for our friend, Al. Please contact the Sheriff if you see him. Kin...
04/23/2019

Northern Virginia friends, please keep your eyes open for our friend, Al. Please contact the Sheriff if you see him. Kindly share the link below.

#Virginia #SeniorAlert CANCELLED: Missing #LoudounCounty Man Safely Located

The Loudoun County Sheriff's Officenty Sheriff's Office is searching for Mr. Albert Vandegriek, 87, of Sterling, Va. Mr. Vandegriek is a white male with white hair and blue eyes. He is 6'2 and weighs 195 lbs.

He was last seen April 22, 2019 at approximately 2 p.m. at Providence Village Drive in Sterling driving a white 2004 Subaru station wagon with Virginia license plate ZJ-2363. He was last seen wearing a black and white shirt with gray pants.

Mr. Vandegriek suffers from a cognitive impairment. Please contact the Loudoun County Sheriff's Office at 703-777-1021 or dial 911.

Virginia Department of Transportation

04/22/2019

What a GREAT day, St. Matt's! By God's grace, you really outdid yourself this year--everywhere I looked I saw our "and then some!" spirit in action. From the bottom of my heart, thank you for our very best Easter yet!!! with much love and affection, Fr. Rob+

Easter 2019
04/21/2019

Easter 2019

04/21/2019

Easter Service Prelude - Hallelujah!

Photos from St. Matthew's Episcopal Church, Sterling, Virginia's post
04/21/2019

Photos from St. Matthew's Episcopal Church, Sterling, Virginia's post

04/21/2019
04/21/2019
Photos from St. Matthew's Episcopal Church, Sterling, Virginia's post
04/21/2019

Photos from St. Matthew's Episcopal Church, Sterling, Virginia's post

Photos from St. Matthew's Episcopal Church, Sterling, Virginia's post
04/21/2019

Photos from St. Matthew's Episcopal Church, Sterling, Virginia's post

04/21/2019

Saint Matthew's Easter Services will be held today at 5:45am, 9am and 11am. We hope you'll join us as we celebrate the Resurrection of Jesus Christ.

************************************************

"Good Morning,

We had a little excitement here lately. I got up one morning and came out to make coffee and I saw the apple tree shaking. I thought it was a raccoon but it turned out to be a bear. It looked like the bear was maybe two or three years old, not huge but fair size.
Anyhow, he ate all my apples and turned over the garbage can and spread the garbage around. The can has been turned over before and I thought it was a raccoon.

Talk to you later.
Dad"

So reads an email from my dad sent Monday, August 5, 2013. I have a folder of his emails. Sometimes, when I really miss him, I go back and reread them.

I sure wish new emails were being added to that folder, but they are not. I sure wish I could talk to him again, but I cannot. I’d give anything to see him again. The promise of Easter is that, one day, I will.

In the meantime, today’s reading from Ephesians reminds me that there is nothing more important than making the most of our time with the people who are still here. Paul writes that we should be “steadily pouring ourselves out for each other in acts of love, alert at noticing differences and quick at mending fences.” (Ephesians 4:3)

So yes, I will worship God for all I am worth this Easter day. I will celebrate the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ and the promise that those we love, but see no longer, will be resurrected as well. But just as importantly, by God’s grace and with God’s help, I will do all that I can — and then some!— to love well.

I hope you will too.
—CRM

Psalms: 111, 112, 113, 146, 147
Old Testament: Deuteronomy 6:4-9
Epistle: Ephesians 4:1-16
Gospel: John 1:1-18; Luke 24:13-35

04/20/2019

“But Jesus called the children to him and said, ‘Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these.’” (Luke 18: 16)

I truly love to remind myself of this passage. A few years ago, a sudden illness caused me to spend several weeks in a rehab hospital. I remember experiencing moments of despair, wondering how I could ever possibly attempt to get back into the frenetic world I had
temporarily left behind. But while in that hospital, a moment of truth about God’s love came to me that calmed all these fears. It was as if the world opened up to me as a brand new, never-before-opened gift. I was like a child, seeing the beauty of our world for the very first time. I marveled at and thirsted to see more of the clouds, the rain, the trees, the people — all the miracles and beauty of the world were there for me to truly appreciate and enjoy. I loved the privilege of just being able to walk across a parking lot that was wet from a recent storm!

Now, every morning as I go to work, I cherish the magnificence and wonder of this creation. After my daily prayers of thanks, I pray that I may never lose this view and my appreciation of God’s gifts to us. I pray that this point-of-view might be contagious, as I wish to share it so that others, too, may see the wonders around them, especially when they are weighed down by all the daily hassles that darken or fully block this view.

Dear God, help us to stop and take a moment to just look around. Help us see, with the openness and innocence of little children, the magnificence of this beautiful world. For these truly precious gifts, we thank you —I thank you. Amen.

—RH

Psalms: 55, 138, 139
Old Testament: Deuteronomy 29:2-15
Epistle: 2 Corinthians 9:1-15
Gospel: Luke 8:15-30

Tell us how you really feel about these Easter treats. Then bring your peeps and join us for Easter on Sunday, April 21 ...
04/19/2019

Tell us how you really feel about these Easter treats. Then bring your peeps and join us for Easter on Sunday, April 21 at 5:45am, 9am, or 11am.

04/19/2019

“I waited patiently for the LORD; he turned to me and heard my cry. He …set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand.” (Psalm 40:1-2)

There was a time in my faith that I struggled to understand the divine nature of Jesus and what that meant in my life. Wasn’t Jesus just a radical prophet, a person who just really understood Torah well? Why do Christians claim Jesus as divine, and what did that mean for me in my life?

I used a gap year between college and seminary as intentional time of discernment to really wrestle with the question: Who is Jesus and what does he mean to me? I was uncertain, confused, afraid, and wondering… a lot! Was I worthy enough to believe? Would I ever be able to connect with Jesus in the way I should, the way I desired to? Then, in 2015, came Holy Week.

The parish has a Maundy Thursday tradition, at the end of the service, to process in and erect a tall, roughened wooden cross in front of the altar, where it remains through Good Friday. People are invited to stay with the cross as long as they desire, sitting in the dark sanctuary, with a dim light upon the cross. It was in that in-between time, between Maundy Thursday and Good Friday, that I broke down in tears.

I sat there, alone with the cross, sobbing. As I gazed upon its rough face, I understood, I believed, for the first time in a long time. I can’t explain what happened exactly, but I know, in that holy space, that I saw the face of Jesus — the face of God. I saw the love He has for me and for the world. I saw how that love was lived out, how it is still lived out. I saw the cross in its entirety — its pain, sadness, the promise of hope, joyfulness, and of resurrection. I saw how my questions had helped me understand more fully my relationship with Jesus and led me to claim it all more fiercely. I finally understood that, even in my brokenness and wandering, Jesus loves me and accepts me as His own — and that, my friends, is offered to us all.

“Then I said, “Here I am, I have come… I desire to do your will, my God; your law is within my heart.” (Psalm 40:7-8) Amen.
—RGM

Psalms: 40, 51, 54
Old Testament: Deuteronomy 26:1-11
Epistle: 2 Corinthians 8:16-24
Gospel: Luke 18:9-14

04/18/2019

We can’t wait to celebrate Easter with you!

Services at 5:45am, 9am, 11am

04/18/2019

“Now finish the work, so that your eager willingness to do it may be matched by your completion of it, according to your means.” (2 Cor 8:11)

I sat alone at the large dining room table, drinking coffee, on the morning my great-niece and her husband came to take it away. She had always admired that table, so I was happy it was going to a good home.

I ran my hand over the smooth, dark grain as I stood to answer the door bell.

“I’m going to have to take it apart,” Arthur said.

It was a very long table. “Yes,” I said.

As Arthur and Lisa pulled on the table top, I thought about how that surface had been used in preparing meals. Dad would sit at the table, eyes tearing as he coarsely chopped pungent yellow onions and carefully sliced shiny green jalapenos (whose oils could irritate your skin, “like a burn,” he’d say), while Mom steamed tamales in a huge pot, and had lard sizzling in a black, cast-iron skillet, ready to make the spicy red enchilada sauce. I could smell the incredible aromas that so many times filled that small house. Preparing meals was always a lot of work, but they knew the results would be worth it!

As Arthur worked, we laughed and smiled and shared stories of the times we had spent at that table…laughing and smiling and eating – so much eating! I could still hear their voices. Mom, leading us in prayer, then shouting as she passed the tortillas, “Eat! We have a lot of food!” And Dad telling funny stories, but only after savoring every single bite on his plate of Mom’s authentic, mouth-watering Mexican food, especially her enchiladas!

Arthur finished. As he and Lisa walked out the front door, each carrying an end of the table, I looked at the now empty space; I saw Mom and Dad, eating with gusto, feeding friends as well as family, laughing, enjoying each other…enjoying life!

As I turned and looked away, I saw Mom and Dad’s favorite framed picture of The Last Supper, which had always overlooked that table.

I smiled. Without hesitating, I took it down for myself.

Heavenly Father, on this Holy Thursday, may we remember Your words at the table of The Last Supper, as You prepared us to continue Your work with eager willingness…and gusto!... to spread Your message of hope and salvation. Amen.
—MO

Psalms: 50, 59, 60
Old Testament: Deuteronomy 16:18-20; 17:14-20
Epistle: 2 Corinthians 8:1-16
Gospel: Luke 18:1-8

Commemorate the last supper on Maundy Thursday at 7:30pm
04/18/2019

Commemorate the last supper on Maundy Thursday at 7:30pm

04/17/2019

“For when they die they will take nothing away; their wealth will not go down with them.” (Psalm 49:17)

The antique desk sits in my home office. It was given to me as a schoolgirl after my father restored it, and I spent many hours studying there. Its original owner was my grandfather’s sister, Bessie. She was a teacher and died unmarried. They were young adults during the Great Depression – and threw nothing away. After Bessie died, her treasured desk, along with old family correspondence, was stored in my grandparents’ attic.

I loved to go in that attic every time we visited my grandmother. It was like entering a time machine through stairs that pulled down from the ceiling in the hall. We would scurry up after lunch and explore the “treasures” that were hidden there: furniture, books, paintings, photographs, linens, dolls. These had been the treasures of deceased family members. Exploring and carefully examining each item, looking to discover its hidden value, was exciting and very entertaining. What made it special? What made it valuable? Why was it treasured? Ultimately, the dust would force us to come down for fresh air. Sometimes, Grandma would allow us to bring something down so that we could look at it longer. But further exploration would have to wait until our next visit.

It would be fun to go into that attic again, now as an adult. I bet I could go straight to some of my favorite treasures. I imagine they would be just as I remember them from my childhood. But the home was sold when my grandmother could no longer live independently. My dad had to clean out the attic. So, now, there are only memories.

Perhaps that is why I love to explore in antique shops with my girlfriends. It is fun to see something and imagine that it was once someone’s treasured item, like the ones in my Grandma’s attic. It brings back memories of climbing into the attic of her home to explore the treasures left behind when people died . . . windows into the past.

Holy God, I remember how my grandmother saved everything — in case it was needed someday. I remember the fun of exploring Grandma's attic. I remember that, when she died, all of her things were left behind. I hear Your word, Lord. Help me always remember that, even as I live, You invite me out of my life into Yours. Amen.
—SGH

Psalms: 49, 53, 119:49-72
Old Testament: Deuteronomy 13:1-11
Epistle: 2 Corinthians 7:2-16
Gospel: Luke 17:20-37

04/16/2019

“One of them, when he saw he was healed, came back, praising God in a loud voice. He threw himself at Jesus’ feet and thanked him…” (Luke 17:15-16)

There is one word from many of today’s readings that caught my attention. “Praise.” It reminds me of everything I have to be thankful for and how much I need to thank Jesus, the Holy Spirit, and God for it. It’s a struggle to maintain my focus on glorifying Him in all that I do. So, I often reflect on my experiences as a reminder, and I try to pray throughout each day.

In our gospel story, Luke speaks of a leper who was healed by Jesus, and then he praises God with a loud voice. It’s been twelve years since I was diagnosed with stage four cancer and underwent radiation and chemotherapy. By far, that was the most challenging time of my life.

Praise be to Jesus for walking with my wonderful wife, and with me, to daily treatments for two months. I praise the Holy Spirit for miraculously taking away my pain and suffering when no one else could. Praise be to God for family, friends, doctors and nurses, brothers and sisters in Christ, who prayed and supported us through it all. And praise be to God for healing me and allowing me to become a survivor.

I hear God best when I’m in quiet places. Probably because I listen better when it’s quiet. So, I start each day with a sunrise dog walk. During my morning walk, I pray a simple prayer.

“Thank you, Lord, for another beautiful day in Your kingdom here on earth.”

I often add to that prayer, asking for guidance, strength, or wisdom. As I continue to walk quietly, I take delight in the beauty of the surrounding nature, and I listen for whispers from heaven.

My morning prayer has helped me focus on praising and trusting in God and His divine plan. I use it throughout the day as a moral compass to bring me back and to keep me on track. It opens my conversation with God and seems to lead me to a better place. A good place.
May God hear my praises and yours, and delight in them. Amen
—PFH

Psalms: 45, 57, 58
Old Testament: Deuteronomy 12:1-12
Epistle: 2 Corinthians 6:3-7:1
Gospel: Luke 17:11-19

Calling all kids! You're invited to an Easter Celebration: Egg Hunt, Glitter Tattoos, Bouncy House, and a Visit with the...
04/15/2019

Calling all kids! You're invited to an Easter Celebration: Egg Hunt, Glitter Tattoos, Bouncy House, and a Visit with the Easter Bunny immediately following joyful worship at 9am and 11am. Each child attending will also receive a goody bag. We hope to see you there.

Easter at St. Matthew's
5:45am, 9am, 11am
201 E. Frederick Drive, Sterling, VA

www.stmtts.org

04/15/2019

“…What we are is plain to God, and I hope it is also plain to your conscience.” (2Cor. 5:11)

I was an atypical kid. I devoured every nature documentary on PBS. I wrote my name in ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics, inspired by the Philip Glass opera “Akhnaten” I’d seen at the Met. I told my friends that I could only spend half of recess playing because I needed time to think. I was generally happy and confident and willing to share a poem or a lecture about my rock collection with anyone.

But then middle school happened, and the desire to fit in with the popular kids, and the realization that I had very little knowledge of pop culture. I flipped on the radio on the boom box in my room and spent happy hours dancing and singing along to Tiffany, Debbie Gibson, Madonna, and Bon Jovi. I fantasized that Tiffany would come to my middle school and would be so impressed by my dancing and knowledge of the backup parts to “I Think We’re Alone Now” that she would invite me on stage to perform with her. Everyone at school would see me sing with Tiffany, and my popularity would be assured.

Toward the end of 6th grade, I was invited to a slumber party with a large group of more popular girls. After a discussion of which popular boys everyone liked (I faked it; I didn’t know any of those boys), someone put on music and declared it was time for a dance contest. This was my chance! They would see my dancing and love me, and I would become part of this group forever!

When it was my turn, I danced my heart out, waving my arms harder and lifting my knees higher than I ever had before.

The reaction was not what I had hoped.

“What was that?” sneered a popular girl.

I was rated a 5/10, the lowest score of the evening. I was crushed. And I was never invited to another slumber party with those girls.

But I did go on to dance on stage.

And even better than that, I have found greater value in friends who see me and love me just as I am, the way God loves me -- no performance required.

Dear Lord God, please help me to see myself, and to see others, the way You see us; as worthy of love, just as we are. Amen.
—RBP

Psalms: 41, 44, 52
Old Testament: Deuteronomy 11:13-19
Epistle: 2 Corinthians 5:11-6:2
Gospel: Luke 17:1-10

Address

201 E Frederick Dr
Sterling, VA
20164

General information

Saturday 5:00 pm: Contemporary Communion Service with intimate acoustic music Sunday 8:00 am: Rite I Communion 9:30 am: Contemporary Communion Service with vibrant rock band and Sunday School 11:00 am: Rite II Communion Service with choir and Sunday school A nursery is provided at all services. Sunday school for elementary aged children is offered at 9:30am and 11am on Sunday morning. Watch sermons and special services online at: http://www.youtube.com/user/StMatthewsSterling

Opening Hours

Monday 10:00 - 16:00
Tuesday 08:00 - 16:00
Wednesday 12:00 - 16:00
Thursday 08:00 - 16:00
Sunday 07:45 - 12:30

Telephone

(703) 430-2121

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