The mission of St. Matthew's Lutheran Church is to love, welcome, nurture, and serve all people
by following the example of Jesus Christ.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Service cancelled Sunday 8/28

Jersey City mandatory evacuations and emergency shelter info (Sat 8/27 2:10pm).

Due to the expected severe weather, worship AT St. Matthew's is cancelled this Sunday. Please be safe during the storm, and check in on your neighbors, especially the elderly and disabled. We hope that, when the worst of the storm passes, we will be blessed if we can laugh at our preparations as over-cautious. Please pray for the safety of all in harm's way.

There will certainly be cleanup and repair work. We will keep you posted about St. Matthew's response and needs. Check the church website,, for church-related news.

An order for worship at home which you may use in place of our normal Sunday service is at the bottom of this message.

May God sustain you this day and always.

Paul Bellan-Boyer
For the Congregation Council


A home service for Sunday, August 28, 2011

From Psalm 51
Open my lips, O Lord,
and my mouth shall proclaim your praise.
Create in me a clean heart, O God,
and renew a right spirit within me.
Cast me not away from your presence
and take not your holy Spirit from me.
Give me the joy of your saving help again
and sustain me with your bountiful Spirit.
Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

Romans 12:9–21
Let love be genuine; hate what is evil, hold fast to what is good; love one another with mutual affection; outdo one another in showing honor. Do not lag in zeal, be ardent in spirit, serve the Lord. Rejoice in hope, be patient in suffering, persevere in prayer. Contribute to the needs of the saints; extend hospitality to strangers.

Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse them. Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep. Live in harmony with one another; do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly; do not claim to be wiser than you are. Do not repay anyone evil for evil, but take thought for what is noble in the sight of all. If it is possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all. Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave room for the wrath of God; for it is written, "Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord." No, "if your enemies are hungry, feed them; if they are thirsty, give them something to drink; for by doing this you will heap burning coals on their heads." Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

A period of silence may follow.

Matthew 16:21–28
From that time on, Jesus began to show his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and undergo great suffering at the hands of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised. And Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him, saying, "God forbid it, Lord! This must never happen to you." But he turned and said to Peter, "Get behind me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to me; for you are setting your mind not on divine things but on human things."

Then Jesus told his disciples, "If any want to become my followers, let them deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. For those who want to save their life will lose it, and those who lose their life for my sake will find it. For what will it profit them if they gain the whole world but forfeit their life? Or what will they give in return for their life?

For the Son of Man is to come with his angels in the glory of his Father, and then he will repay everyone for what has been done. Truly I tell you, there are some standing here who will not taste death before they see the Son of Man coming in his kingdom."

A hymn or song of praise may be sung or said.
Suggested: Near the Cross

With the whole people of God in Christ Jesus, let us pray for the church, those in need, and all of God's creation.

O God: We pray for all who work today to share the good news of your Son, Jesus Christ. We especially remember those who gather under the threat of persecution, that they might be sustained. Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

From the smallest ant to the tallest tree—your entire creation is a masterpiece and a gift. Help us treat your creation with respect and care. Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

For all nations at war or facing disease or poverty, especially Somalia, Libya, Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, the Bahamas, and the United States of America, we ask for your life-giving presence and peace, O God. We pray for clean water and an end to hunger. Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Look with compassion on all who are suffering: the unemployed, abused and neglected children, people who are depressed and lonely, and those facing challenges to their health especially Dr. B. Jayaraj, Joseph Haverlock, the Donna, David, Louis, Lois Jones, Mildred Gosine, Jennifer Arrindeh, Rodney Aycox, Sr., Stella Molnar, Victor Cowan, Delores Sepulveda, Albert Narine, Emily Narine, Jeremy Brown, Christian Adam, Lisa Bishop, Miriam and Jason, Charlotte, Andy Rhode, Andrew, Windell, Michael, John, Malik & Iyanna, Nicholas & Tania, St. Matthew’s prayer group, Redemption Children’s Home in Ghana, Lutheran Children’s Home of NJ, and all those affected by Hurricane Irene that they may be sustained and know your mercy. Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Look with kindness on this community, O God, the congregation of St. Matthew’s and our neighbors in this region. Weave us into a net that provides comfort and support, refuge and friendship. Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Here other intercessions may be offered.

With thanksgiving, O God, we remember all who abide with you in heaven, especially Augustine, Bishop of Hippo, and Moses the Black, monk and martyr. Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Into your hands, gracious God, we commend all for whom we pray, trusting in your mercy; through Jesus Christ, our Savior. Amen.

Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,
your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins
as we forgive those
who sin against us.
Save us from the time of trial
and deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power,
and the glory are yours,
now and forever. Amen.

Lord God, almighty and everlasting Father, you have brought
us in safety to this day: Preserve us with your mighty power,
that we may not fall into sin, nor be overcome by
adversity; and in all we do, direct us to the fulfilling of your
purpose; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

God all mighty,
God most merciful
bless us, keep us, and + grant us peace.

Service adapted from the Book of Common Prayer, p.137.

Friday, August 26, 2011

This Sunday 8/28

Scroll down for weather and service information.

Jesus told his disciples, "If any want to become my followers, let them deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. For those who want to save their life will lose it, and those who lose their life for my sake will find it." Matthew 16:24-35

We have planned, as always, to follow Jesus this Sunday in a 10am worship service, with Paul Ellis preaching. A Bible study on the letter to the Hebrews will follow the service.

Jesus carrying his cross, 5th century casket panel

The Congregation Council is monitoring the weather-related news and will make a decision by 2pm Saturday if a weather-related cancellation is needed. If so, we will post that notice here, as well as by email, phone calls, and by leaving a message on the church answering machine (201-432-9319). If you have any questions, please call the Congregation President, Paul Bellan-Boyer, 201-238-5987 or 201-936-3750.

This hurricane or tropical storm is potentially a serious threat to safety, and you should take precautions to prepare. Follow any emergency directions. If you are planning to leave town, do so early.

Transportation will be disrupted. There is the potential for power outages and a disruption of water supplies. During periods of heavy winds, blowing debris may pose a danger to those outside. There can be serious flooding in low-lying and coastal areas, including downtown Jersey City.

+ Have several day's supply of drinking water, food that does not require refrigeration, and cash (ATMs will not work during power outages)
+ Have an adequate supply of medication and personal care items
+ Batteries and flashlight
+ Keep cell phones charged
+ Bring indoors any trash cans, lawn furniture, outdoor equipment, bicycles, etc, so they do not become a danger when caught by the wind
+ In an emergency, text messages use less bandwidth and help the telephone network function

Christ is faithful as the Son over God’s house. And we are God's house, if indeed we hold firmly to our confidence and the hope in which we glory. Hebrews 3:6