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September 14, 2016, 12:00 AM

A word at mid-week, 9/14

Well, we are in the home stretch and within eyesight of celebrating 100 years of God's love and ministry on the east side of Indianapolis. Happy Birthday to St. Matthew's Episcopal Church and happy mid-week to all of you!!!!

REMINDER for September 18: 
9:30AM HOLY EUCHARIST, Spoken Service, No Music
4:00PM SOLEMN EVENSONG followed by Gala Dinner

First, let me say thank you for all your prayers and well wishes for my dad. He had a rough start of the day but is better this evening. Tomorrow, the medical team will discuss the road ahead and the kind of assistance he will need. Please keep Albert and Juanita in your prayers.

This week, Jesus gave us a pretty powerful set of parables. Parables are like curve balls that help refocus our perspectives in life. In both the parable of the lost sheep and the lost coin, it first appears that Jesus is telling us something of God's character; that he never gives up searching and finding us and restoring us to the place where we belong. But, then, the ball shifts direction and we also see that with so much emphasis on "being lost" there must be something significant about the fact that, as human beings, we are prone to get lost. What do we learn about the character of ourselves and God through the journey of being lost? 

So, the twist of these parables is that we discover something deeper about our selves, about life, and our purpose in life, about who God is in our life by going astray, missing the mark, getting lost because God is at the very center of it all! Please see my sermon, below.

I hope you noticed the new format for the weekly email! You might have noticed that it is a similar pattern to the new website! Thank you Carissa, Tom, and Greg for making both of these social media sites, possible.

As we approach Sunday, I cannot say enough "thank you's" to the Centennial Committee, scores of volunteer hours by many of you, all the thinking, planning, and double checking that has gone into this year. THANK YOU, ALL!

On Sunday, September 25 we will be moving back to our fall schedule,8am Holy Eucharist, 9:15am Sunday School, and10:30am Holy Eucharist. Our first adult Sunday School (Adult Forum) will begin with a series on the Psalms of Lament. I hope many of you will plan to participate in this series.

A word about the 8am service: I am still in the process of setting the format for this service. I will share the new format with you soon, before September 25. Stay tuned!

A word about music ministry: For the remaining Sundays in September and for Sundays in early October, we will welcome Robert Boylard as our organist. He is new to Indianapolis, holds a Master's Degree in Choral Conducting from Yale, plays piano and organ, and his musical skills are top notch. He also has a lovely singing voice. Robert has offered to accompany us for a bit as we search for a more permanent Music Director.

God's love to you all, Fr. Frank

September 7, 2016, 3:20 PM

A word at mid-week, 9/7

A Word at Midweek

Happy mid-week!

It was so nice to see such a good turn-out at worship this past Labor Day Weekend! It was a beautiful day with great music and singing!

In our Gospel, we were confronted with what sounded like some pretty harsh words from Jesus. There was a lot about hating family and friends and carrying our cross if we wanted to follow Jesus. Not necessarily a good marketing slogan or evangelism appeal! But, as moved passed all of the hyperbole, we found Jesus really saying that to follow him means that we are willing to have our lives shaped by our commitment to him anywhere, anytime, and doing just about anything.

The whole of our lives need to be shaped by our love for God. This means that there is a deep connection between what we do at church - in worship, through our outreach, in all the ways we provide service - and what we do in our normal everyday lives. Everything that we do at home, at work, as volunteers, as citizens matters to God. Most of us have never been taught to see our labor as holy, to see our everyday efforts as important to God. Please see my sermon, below.

The Centennial Committee continues to build momentum as the Gala draws near. 

  • Please remember to wear your Centennial T-shirts to churchas we lead up to September 18! 
  • This coming Saturday, September 10 please join us for aWork Day to spruce up the building and grounds
  • Take time to check out the new Entry Way, carpet in the nursery, cleaned and waxed floors both upstairs and downstairs
  • New door mats (the entry way mats will be here soon)

If you have any questions about the Centennial preparations or the Gala event, please let us hear from you.


Please mark your calendars: Beginning on September 25, Adult Forum Series: A Study in the Psalms of Lament. 


This series will explore how key aspects of Hebrew poetry, especially in the lamentation psalms, can be used in practical ways for personal prayer and devotion, and as a way to experience restoration and healing in times of pain and grief.


The St. Matthew's website has a new look! I hope you will check it out at  We decided to move forward with "going live" and realize there are needs tweaks. Please be patient as we get this site fully operational and hopefully useful to those who visit.

Finally, in many of my recent Facebook posts and articles for Smatterings, I have been stressing the need to cultivate a moreoutward looking focus meaning that the things we plan like worship services, outreach programs, website design and so forth are planned with more of a focus on ways to serve or connect with those outside of our walls and less on our own personal likes or dislikes. This is a hard change to make, but a very critical shift that churches need to make in this day and age. 

One of the essential pillars of Anglicanism is the ability to simultaneously be faithful to our traditions while re-interpreting them in each period of history so that our traditions make sense and connect with people in each generation. 

It is an exciting time to be an Episcopalian! I have no doubt that we will remain a vital and stable presence on the east side of Indianapolis. Together, we will be faithful to the traditions as this Church has handed them down and we will discover new ways to make them relevant for 21st Century people!

God's love to you all,  Fr. Frank 

August 31, 2016, 12:00 AM

A word at mid-week, 8/31

Happy mid-week everyone or y'all (as my colleague from Alabama likes to say)! I hope you are making it through all these storms and torrential rains without permanent or insurmountable damage. I know many of you have been fighting flooded basements, downed trees, flooded streets, and power outages. We were without power from 8am Friday until around 12 noon on Sunday. It is in these situations when I become aware of all of the conveniences that I take for granted.

This past week, I have been thinking a lot about what former Presiding Bishop Frank Griswold refers to as appropriating God - meaning that we encounter God and are transformed by God over time and often well before we are able to intellectually understand it. Benedictine Brother Curtis Almquist from The Society of St. John notes that Jesus' identity wasn't handed to him any more than ours has been handed to us. It takes a lot of work to find your way in life. And so when Jesus finally finds his voice and claims his calling, when he says, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life," he hasn't come onto this easily or automatically.

And, so with us. God's grace and transforming activity is developmental over time. Like the whole series of mechanics below street level that are supporting life above the street, God's transforming love is imperceptibly at work in us often beyond our knowledge and awareness.

This is why the church is so important to us. We need each other to grow to our full capacity, to help reflect this gradual "growing up in Christ" movement that is happening in us. Jesus is formed in us gradually and the meaning and purpose of our lives evolves over time. Me and you, in relationship together, grow up in Christ; we need each other.

We give thanks this week for Fr. Jerry Janzen joining us as a Centennial Guest. Please see a full copy of Fr. Jerry's sermon below.

The Centennial Committee is hard at work putting the final touches on the Gala event. Please see the note below about the upcoming Parish Workday on September 10. We want the grounds and facility to look nice as many guests will be joining in with the festivities. Please plan to attend - we will find things to do to fit your know-how, skill level, stamina, and interests!

God's love to you all,  Fr. Frank 

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