Holy Eucharist is held each Sunday at 10am (Nursery is available for 3 and under)
Children’s Sunday School (through 5th grade) meets at 9:45am.
Youth Group meets Sundays from 4-5:30pm
Adult Formation meets at 9am on Sunday mornings.
What a worship service looks like at St. Matthias
Episcopalians worship in many different styles, ranging from very formal, ancient, and multi-sensory rites with lots of singing, music, fancy clothes (called vestments), and incense, to informal services with contemporary music. Yet all worship in the Episcopal Church is based in the Book of Common Prayer, which gives worship a familiar feel, no matter where you go.
Worship in the Episcopal Church is said to be “liturgical,” meaning that the congregation follows service forms and prays from texts that don’t change greatly from week to week during a season of the year. This sameness from week to week gives worship a rhythm that becomes comforting and familiar to many worshipers. For the first-time visitor, liturgy may be exhilarating… or confusing, but don't worry, you can't do anything wrong!
At St. Matthias, our liturgical worship is both formal and approachable; there is a beautiful human element to everything we do, from celebrating the Eucharist together or singing songs you may remember from childhood.
We begin by praising God through song and prayer, and then listen to readings from the Bible; usually one from the Old Testament, a Psalm, something from the Epistles, and (always) a reading from the Gospels.
Next, a sermon interpreting the readings appointed for the day, especially the Gospel, is preached.
The congregation then professes the Nicene Creed (also used by many Christian churches).
Next, the congregation prays together—for the Church, the World, and those in need. We pray for the sick, thank God for all the good things in our lives, and finally, we pray for the departed. The presider (e.g. priest or bishop) concludes with a prayer that gathers the petitions into a communal offering of intercession.
In certain seasons of the Church year, the congregation formally confesses their sins before God and one another. This is a corporate statement of what we have done and what we have left undone, followed by a pronouncement of absolution. In pronouncing absolution, the priest assures the congregation that God, through His Grace, is always ready to forgive our sins.
The congregation then greets one another with a sign of “peace.” Most common is a handshake and saying, "The peace of the Lord be always with you" to which many respond, "And also with you."
Next, the priest stands at the table, which has been set with a cup of wine and a plate of bread or wafers, raises his or her hands, and greets the congregation again, saying “The Lord be with you.” then begins the Eucharistic Prayer, in which the priest tells the story of our faith, from the beginning of Creation, through the choosing of Israel to be God’s people, through our continual turning away from God, and God’s calling us to return. Finally, the priest tells the story of the coming of Jesus Christ, and about the night before his death, on which he instituted the Eucharistic meal (the sacrament of communion) as a continual remembrance of him.
The priest blesses the bread and wine, and the congregation recites the Lord’s Prayer. Finally, the priest breaks the bread and offers it to the congregation, as "The gifts of God for the People of God.”
The congregation then shares in the consecrated bread and the wine, most often kneeling or standing at the altar rail, as a sign of God's love, and the unity of all believers. Those who do not choose to partake are also welcome at the rail to receive a blessing by the priest (signaled by simply crossing their arms across their chest). After, besides a prayer of thanksgiving and blessing of the Prayer Partners (who will offer a private prayer opportunity just inside the altar rail immediately after the service concludes,) the altar party processes during the final hymn. A dismissal, urging all to "Go in Peace to Love and Serve the Lord," is offered. Everyone is invited to proceed downstairs for simple refreshments and fellowship.
"The spiritual traditions of all the religions have certain similarities that are unmistakable. They share many of the same basic practices like sacred reading, spiritual guidance...and above all, trying to be aware of the presence of God in other people and in everyday life." Father John Keating