We are a committed and welcoming parish — a worshipping community involved in Christian Living in Paramus. Everyone is welcome to join us for worship. The Bible is the center of our understanding of the Christian Faith.
If you have never worshipped in an Episcopal Church before, you will notice that we use two books — the Hymnal and the Book of Common prayer — and the Sunday Bulletin which will guide you through the service with helpful page references. If you find this confusing, please ask your neighbor for help or feel free just to listen. You will soon appreciate how the prayers, music, readings and activities at the altar aid us in our approach to God.
As you sit in the church pew, the blue book in the shelf in front of you is our hymnal. The hymns to be sung are listed in the bulletin and on the hymnboard in front of the church. The service music for the Gloria Excelsis and the Sanctus comes first in the hymnal and is listed in the bulletin with an "S" number. We like to sing hymns and often insert hymns into the Sunday Bulletin.
The Book of Common Prayer
The red book in the shelf is our Prayer book. It is the treasure of the Episcopal Church containing all of the Church's services together with additional prayers and devotions for private use.
The Holy Eucharist
The Eucharist, also called Holy Communion and the Lord's Supper, is the principal service in our church. It is divided into two parts: The Word of God and the Holy Communion.
The Word of God
During this first part you will hear prayers, readings from the Bible, a sermon and the congregation will read a psalm. We will also reaffirm our faith by joining in the Creed and we will sing hymns corresponding to the season of the Christian Year or the theme of the day. The Word of God concludes with the exchange of Peace at which time we greet those around us. We then offer to God our monetary gifts as tangible symbols of our life and labor, together with the gifts of bread and wine.
The Holy Communion
The Great Thanksgiving follows with the consecration of the bread and wine and the congregation receiving the Sacrament of Holy Communion. Christianity has celebrated this rite since the Last Supper on the night before Jesus' crucifixion.
The altar is the Lord's, not ours. All are invited to come to the altar rail to receive Holy Communion. Please follow the direction of the ushers.
All churches acknowledge BAPTISM and baptism alone initiates a person into full citizenship in God's kingdom. Therefore, after baptism a child is welcome to receive the Sacrament at the Lord's table. CONFIRMATION is the 'adult commitment' to Christ and is for those who have been baptized as children and who now are ready to make an informed decision about how they choose to exercise their ministry in the service of Jesus.
After the Service
After the Blessing and final hymn, the Eucharist concludes with a dismissal and the response, "Thanks be to God!" We invite you to join us for coffee in the Parish Hall following the service.
Sunday School meets at 10:00 a.m. in the Hards Fellowship Room and in the Sunday School room above. The children are dismissed with prayer at the beginning of the service and re-enter the church at the time of the Communion.
St. Matthew's Church is a member of the Episcopal Diocese Of Newark and a part of the world-wide Anglican Communion. Classes are arranged each year for adults and young people at least 12 years old. They are presented to our bishop for Confirmation. During the same service, candidates may be presented to be received into the Episcopal Church if they have been confirmed in another denomination. Others may use the opportunity to renew their Baptismal Vows. Confirmation classes begin in Epiphany and conclude in the season of Easter.