There are many study groups, home groups, and service and ministry groups at Saint Matthew’s where you can find fellowship and satisfaction in using your talents and grow deeper in your faith and relationship with Jesus. The people of Saint Matthew’s love getting together to eat, drink, dance, and celebrate. If you would like more information, please do not hesitate to contact the church office.
THE MEANING OF BAPTISM
Baptism is the sacrament of new birth in Jesus Christ, and new life as a member of the household of God. It includes the symbolic “washing away” of sin, and freedom from sin’s tyranny. It is a symbolic death to the old way of life, and resurrection to new life in Christ. It is offered to sincere believers who want to become members of Christ’s body, and to the children of those believers who are willing to commit to raising their children as Christians.
PREPARING FOR HOLY BAPTISM
Baptism joins each individual believer to Christ and to his church. It involves a commitment to Jesus and to the community of believers (the church). It may involve a change of lifestyle and focus. Therefore it is of vital importance to the believer, their immediate family and the whole Christian community that baptismal candidates are well prepared. For this reason adult baptismal candidates and the families of infant candidates are required to participate in five Baptismal Preparation Classes.
The community also takes seriously their responsibility to help new Christians live this new life in Christ. The parish will pray for the candidates during the preparation. The baptismal candidates will also be supported by Parish Sponsors for the year following baptism. The Sponsor’s role is to help the candidates (and their parents) find their place in God’s family and to see that they are equipped to fulfill the promises they make in baptism.
Adult candidates and the parents of infant candidates are asked to give a short testimony to their faith at the service of Baptism.
What Is Confirmation?
The rite of Confirmation includes laying on of hands (traditionally by a Bishop) together with anointing with oil and the sign of the cross and prayer for the coming of the Holy Spirit.
There was a time in Anglicanism when both Baptism and Confirmation were required for admission to the Lord’s Table. However, the church has rightly re-affirmed the New Testament witness that Baptism alone joins a person to the Church.
Today, Confirmation serves two primary purposes.
For those baptized in infancy, it is an opportunity to make a public profession of faith. The candidate for confirmation “confirms” for themselves the profession of faith made on their behalf at their baptism.
Confirmation also serves as the ordination service for the people of God. The ordination of bishops, priests, and deacons always includes the invocation of the Holy Spirit. Likewise, at confirmation the bishops lays hands on the candidate and says, “Receive the Holy Spirit.” These invocation is not a suggestion that the Spirit has heretofore been absent from the candidate. Rather, it is an appeal for the giving, awakening, stirring of the Spirit, and for the giving, awakening, and stirring of spiritual gifts for service in Christ’s Church.
Those who have been Baptized and Confirmed in a church by a Bishop in apostolic succession may be received into the Anglican Church in North America by the Bishop. Contact the church office for more information.
Those who have been baptized and confirmed in any Anglican Church in the Anglican Communion, and wish to be recommit themselves to a life of discipleship following Christ may choose to reaffirm their baptismal covenant. Contact the church office to discuss this further.
For those interested in Church Membership, please contact the church office.
Anglican Church Women (ACW)
Anglican Church Woman (ACW) was originally started in the late 1800’s as the Woman’s Auxiliary to the Missionary Society of the Church of England in Canada, commonly called WA.
Today we still serve the church in Prayer, Work, and Stewardship and Fundraising. You will find our members working behind the scenes in many different areas and ministries in the church.
Youth (grade 6 – 12)
Our youth meet for Bible study while the younger children are in Sunday School. We believe that our youth deserve more than just a fun time during youth group, and that interacting with a Bible passage through small group study and discussion will help them grapple with the questions that are important to them as they grow and mature in their faith. This time also includes liturgical elements that that will continue the “flow” of the service for the youth and prepare them to return to the main service for communion.
For more information, contact Adrian Wallace, Youth Director
Little Ones (infant & preschool)
Our staffed nursery is available for infants and preshoolers during the Sunday service. As well as providing child care, our Little Ones program includes singing, story time and crafts for the preschool children.
Elementary Kids (K – grade 5)
Our Elementary Kids program is a vibrant Sunday School program where we teach the Kingdom Story curriculum that has been developed by our own Sunday School teachers. The curriculum seeks to highlight the grand narrative of the Bible, and to show the children that the stories in the Bible are not isolated stories, but together they weave the rich tapestry of the history of God’s people and the unfolding of the Kingdom of God on earth. It includes both Old and New Testament stories that point to and reveal Christ as the Saviour and Promised Forever King. Parents can view the whole curriculum under the Resources section on our website. We are currently working on developing our second year curriculum that will complement the Kingdom Story.
The Elementary Kids program includes liturgical elements that will continue the “flow” of the service for the children and prepare them to return to the main service for communion. It is also a really fun program where the story is often a short drama which the children can spontaneously participate in, or they can choose to be an active observer. In this way, children are learning the stories by hearing, seeing, and doing! One Sunday a month is devoted to reviewing the lessons for that month and to teaching the children about prayer, and actively praying together for prayer requests that the children bring.