St. Matthew Messenger
April 2010 NEWSLETTER
A Message from Pastor Zeiders
Renewal, new life, is what we need, what we long for, isn’t it? Even when things
are going relatively well for us, we know, deep down, that there is need for more . .
That something more is life in God. Life in our Savior, Jesus. In the blessed and
glorious season of Easter, we shout Alleluia! and pray that we, too, will experience
resurrection in our own lives—the resurrection of hope, the resurrection of
meaningful and purposeful living, the resurrection of caring and loving—and being
God promises always to be with us—the risen Christ defeats death so that we
might live . . . forever! Renewal, resurrection comes not just at the end of life, but
daily, in remembrance of our baptism, in the knowledge of what God has done and
continues to do for us.
I pray new life for you and me—for us and our loved ones, for our community, our
nation, for the world. The gift is held out—remember what God does for you, and
May you know the indescribable joy and deep peace of being renewed, day by day,
in the love and grace of God in Christ.
Music Ministry Notes
A special thanks goes out to the choir members of both the senior choir and handbell choir.
Following a rigorous Christmas season, we were propelled into the Lenten and Easter Season
with only a short reprieve. Holy week was a time of celebration and a time of reflection as seen
through the music selections for those services.
The choirs continue to push forward with determination and a passion for praising God
by lifting their voices in song. I want to thank all of you for your flexibility with music
selections and rehearsals. Please know that the choirs would not be the same without any of you!
As always, we welcome any new or old singers or ringers to join us on any Sunday morning.
We will continue holding rehearsals until the end of May with the Senior Choir between
services and the Handbell Choir at 11:30am following the second service. We are looking for
ways to expand the music ministry at St. Matthew. If you have any ideas or are interested in
sharing your talents, please join us at any time!
One final bit of exciting news comes with the donation of the 4th octave of handbells.
The music ministry is receiving this generous donation from an anonymous member of our
congregation. As a result, I am in the preliminary stages of establishing a community handbell
choir. If you or someone you know may be interested in helping in this process, please let me
know as soon as possible. There will be more details to follow; however in the meantime, I
would ask for your prayers that this ministry would be a blessing on our congregation as well as
in our community.
“As a Christian community led by the Holy Spirit, the Senior Choir joyfully:
~celebrates God’s gift of music,
~leads the congregation in worship, and
~serves God’s people through song,
all to the glory of God.”
Samuel H. Evert, Sr.
August 5, 1916 - March 15, 2010
Columbia Montour Home Hospice @ Maria Hall
Fourth Floor, Suite 4
Maria Hall Drive
Danville PA 17821
Phone: 275-8455, Alternate Phone 594-4637
Congregation Council Highlights
(March 9, 2010 mtg.)
Council met and toured the Agape Ministries facility on 7th St. Impressed with the
ministry of Agape, Council will urge the congregation to find ways to offer support
through volunteer opportunities and monetary donations. Social Ministry will work
to back this emphasis.
Two lay voting members to the Upper Susquehanna Synod Assembly June 18-19 are
In reviewing events and worship services during Holy Week, Council was reminded we
will stick with the regular services of 8 & 10:30am on Easter Sunday.
Pastor Joel reported he is working with a number of couples towards weddings in May,
June and October. Pastor Joel will be away on vacation Saturday, May 29 through
June 12. He will seek laypersons from the congregation to lead worship 5/30 and 6/6
(the first two Sundays of the summer worship schedule--8 & 9:30am)
A team of Council members is working on ways to better incorporate new members into
the life of the congregation.
Financial Update - February
Gifts and Offerings $15,301
Balance (Shortfall) (877)
Balance (Shortfall) YTD (2,717)
The Social Ministry Committee held a brain storming session recently. They will be
continuing with the events that were held in the past as well as exploring some new ideas! Keep
your eyes, ears and hearts open for upcoming opportunities to use the gifts God has bestowed on
you to assist with the efforts in our church and community.
The next meeting will be April 14th in the parlor and will continue to be held the
2nd Wednesday of the month thereafter.
Please call Connie Kline - 441-3016 with any questions, or if you are of the heart to help
out with one or more of the upcoming events!
ST. MATTHEW WELCOMES MATTHEW SWINEHART who will be joining the family
of St. Matthew Lutheran Church. Formerly from Mt. Pleasant Mills, Matthew moved to the
Bloomsburg area 12 years ago. He teaches high school English at Central Columbia and enjoys
many hobbies including reading, golfing, traveling, spending time with family and friends, and
working on his new home.
Church Council Visits AGAPE
On Tuesday evening, March 9, Church Council met at AGAPE on Seventh Street in
Bloomsburg for a tour. We were curious about the faith-based work that was being done there
and wanted to see how St. Matthew could become a part of the non-denominational ministry to
Kimberly O’Malley, Vice President of AGAPE, showed us the facility which had been
the old Sears Warehouse. Wow! To say that God has blessed AGAPE with love would be an
understatement. In a very short period of time, AGAPE is up and running, fulfilling President
Eileen Chapman’s vision to fill in the gaps between area people in need and the community
services available to help them. The Bloomsburg Ministerium has decided to channel their extra
funds to AGAPE to help area needy. Thirteen area churches have pledged monthly financial
Through their ‘clearinghouse’ structure of application and interview process, the all-
volunteer staff can determine a person or families’ financial or material needs quickly and get
them headed in the right direction. The direction might be to another local organization or it
could be to an AGAPE program.
One of their goals is to not overlap existing community programs but rather to make
people more aware of what is currently available to them, open communication between
organizations and provide services that are not currently available. Another goal is to have
AGAPE act as the hub with area churches and organizations acting as the spokes to work with
the area people in need, not simply to enable them.
Several of the AGAPE programs started so far: HELPMATES, for prison inmates’
transition back into the community; ROAD HOME, housing and shelter assistance for displaced
people; DAILY BREAD, Supplemental Co-op food program; FIXER UPPER, household repair
and assistance; TANSPORTS, transportation assistance; KIDS CARE, parenting & children’s
services; SMART START, supplemental educational training; and STORE MORE, a warehouse
storage program that saves materials and supplies for hardships which affect our community.
Council met after the tour and presentation and we are literally overflowing with positive
energy about how St. Matthew can get involved with AGAPE. The Social Ministry Committee
will be brainstorming to determine how St. Matthew can reach out to AGAPE to help with their
ministry. What a great, timely fit as we re-organize the Social Ministry at St. Matthew!
AGAPE solicits your prayers, your in-kind donations and your financial gifts to continue
helping families in our community. You can send contributions to: AGAPE, P.O. Box 424,
Bloomsburg, PA 17815. You can visit them on the web at www.agapelovefromabove.org Or
call them for more information at 317-2210.
The definition of AGAPE is: the love of Christians for other persons, corresponding to
the love of God for humankind. Please ask a member of Council more about AGAPE and how
you can help with this compassionate, loving ministry, if we haven’t already approached you!
Birthdays & Anniversaries
April Birthdays Date
Tasha Kocher, Debbie McBride, Renee Moyer, Dorothea Schaefer , Mason Snyder 4/01
Freda Kreischer, Jennifer Longenberger, Lynn Wolinsky 4/02
Levonia Pollard, Fred Whitenight 4/03
Molly Gottstein 4/05
Kayla McCready 4/06
James Hufford Jr. 4/07
Robert Sorg 4/08
Matthew Cadwallader, Betty McMahan, Mae Shaffer, Susan Shreck, Todd Wolinsky 4/09
Barbara Albertson 4/10
Darin Bettinger 4/12
Kathleen Hinkle 4/13
Edith Fenstermacher, Barbara Ohl 4/14
Caitlin Mattern, John McHenry 4/15
Nancy Eyerly, Mary Jane Fridman 4/16
Catherine Savage 4/17
Lyle Klingaman, Leonard Stone, Dana Weaver, Daniel Wood IV 4/18
Lauren Driscoll 4/19
Law Groner 4/22
Lois Krum 4/24
Diane Bachinger 4/25
Douglas Hufford, Scott Welsh 4/26
Wendelin Frantz, Jonathan Reifer 4/28
Sandra Evans, Alan Hack, Will Hanna, Glenn Houck 4/29
Elaine Stauffer, David Wood 4/30
April Wedding Anniversaries
Names Date Years
Law & Jean Groner 4/06/1957 53
Wade & Molly Gottstein 4/17/1982 28
Bradford & Bonita Rhone 4/25/1991 19
Freda Kreischer celebrated her 93rd birthday on April 2nd. Your greetings and cards of
congratulations would be most welcome. Please send to: Freda Kreischer
Loyalton of Bloomsburg, 420 Shaffer Road, Bloomsburg, PA 17815
Kathleen Hinkel will turn 90 on April 13th. Let’s help this long time member of St. Matthew
celebrate this milestone. Please send your birthday greetings and congratulations to:
945 Fairground Road, Room 405, Lewisburg, PA 17837
AARP tax help continues in the library on Tuesdays
SEWING GROUP We continue to quilt Wednesdays from 9am - noon during AARP Tax Help
time. We invite anyone with an interest in knotting quilts to join our ministry. We look forward
to new persons coming out to help us.
THANK YOU NOTES from the following individuals have been posted on the bulletin board
during the month of March: Donna Fornwald, Liz & Harry Aurand, Jim Terwilliger &
Catherine Nungesser, Wanda Brobst, Helen Welsh, Protestant Campus Ministry
HOLY WEEK SERVICES - 2010
Special Opportunities to Grow in Faith this Season (and beyond) continue:
Healing - 7pm (1st Tuesdays)
Pastor’s Class Thursdays at 10:30am
Chant and Contemplation (2nd Thursdays)
Maundy Thursday - April 1 - worship at 7pm
Good Friday - April 2 - worship at 7pm
Holy Saturday - April 3 - Vigil of Prayer - nave open for prayer and reflection 2-8pm
Easter Sunday - Resurrection of Our Lord - April 4 - 8 & 10:30am
PASTORAL CARE AND CONCERN are very important issues to Pastor Joel. Please be
reminded that it’s best if you take care to inform him of special needs, hospitalizations, illness,
etc. Under the latest guidelines, hospitals cannot and will not give out information without your
approval. If you inform Pastor of any upcoming hospitalizations, surgeries, etc., he will be
able to better provide pastoral care. You can always call Pastor Joel at home (784-3101) or
It is announced with great sadness that Craig Bradley Serff, 49, passed away on Monday,
February 8 at 11:45am at the University of Michigan Medical Center in Ann Arbor, Michigan
where he had been a patient. Craig was born March 16, 1960 in Harrisburg, PA and is the son of
Marilyn Ward, Bloomsburg and John Serff, Florida.
Upon graduating from Columbia Vo-Tech, he joined the FBI in Washington, DC to work in the
fingerprinting department. Later he joined the Philadelphia Police as a fingerprint expert. Later
in life, he became a travel agent and became manager of a travel agency in Pittsburgh, PA.
Eventually he went to Michigan to work with a travel agency at the airport.
Craig enjoyed traveling throughout the U.S., South America and Europe. He loved planning
trips for friends and family.
He is survived by his ex-wife, Maria Isabel of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, and his daughter, Marilia di
Lima and son, Daniel di Lima Serff, Lauderdale, FL, his mother, Marilyn Ward, Bloomsburg
and father John Serff, Florida. He is sadly missed by all and has left a big gap in the lives of his
loved ones. Contributions may be sent to the American Cancer Society in memory of Craig
ST. MATTHEW PRESCHOOL NEWS
Spring is finally in the air! St. Matthew Preschool will be celebrating Easter at the
beginning of the month of April. We will be coloring eggs and making Easter baskets and
having an egg hunt. Preschool parents have been busy making and selling chocolate eggs
and as a result we have done an “egg”cellent job with this fund raiser. Thank you for all of
your support! The spring candle order forms are available….check the church bulletin
board. They are due back by April 16th. Many thanks to all of you who support our
preschool fundraisers. They help to cover the cost of supplies and other expenses and is
The preschool will be having a duck pond game at Bloomsburg Renaissance. If you
would like to volunteer, your help would be greatly appreciated. A signup sheet will be
posted on the church bulletin board. See you at Renaissance the end of April!
The ELCA has announced the location of the next ELCA Youth Gathering in July
2012….It will be held in NEW ORLEANS, LA again!!!!! In 2009 in New Orleans,
Lutheran youth made connections. They learned about hospitality and how people
overcame anxiety with unwavering Faith. They began a journey that travels far beyond
service projects with the residents of New Orleans, Louisiana. That's why we will be
traveling back to New Orleans in 2012, to continue the good work and learn about the new
house God is building.
"A holy temple in the Lord; in whom you are also built together spiritually
in to a dwelling place for God.” (Ephesians 2:21b-22)
April 10th- Lutheran Youth Day at Susquehanna University 10am - 5:30 pm
The theme is “Still Under Construction!” There will be large group worship and singing,
small group exploration with a concluding concert by Peder Eide.
Deadline to register and order t-shirts in March 26, 2010.
“Under Construction, Jesus in my carpenter!”
April 17th- YOUTH SPAGHETTI DINNER AND TALENT SHOW - 5:00 PM
Please come out and support our Youth Group for some delicious spaghetti and meatballs
or if you prefer we'll have vegetarian Spaghetti too! After dinner please stay for our talent
show. We are looking for anyone with any kind of talent. Please contact Kayla McCready
at 441-3480 if you would like to contribute your God given talents to our show!
April 25- Youth Meeting- 6-8pm
Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday
1 2 3
Good Friday 2-8 pm
Thursday 7pm worship
7pm worship Vigil of Prayer
Nave will be
6-7:30 pm open for prayer
Girl Scouts and reflection
4 5 6 9am-noon 7 8 9 10
EASTER SUNDAY AARP tax help 9 -noon 10:30 am 8am - Men’s
8 & 10:30 Sewing Ladies Pastor’s Class Prayer
Holy Communion 7 pm Healing Breakfast
Service Danny Hale,
7:30 pm Speaker
6-7:30 pm Worship and Lutheran Youth
Girl Scouts Music Day at S.U.
11 12 13 9am-noon 14 16 17 Youth
8 & 10:30 AARP tax help 9 -noon 15 Spaghetti
Holy Communion Sewing Ladies 10:30 Pastor’s Supper and
9:15am Sunday Class Talent
6-7:30 pm 7pm 7pm
Girl Scouts Congregation Social Ministry
Council 6-7:30 pm
Nursery available 10:30 6-7:30 pm
18 19 20 21 22 23 24
8 & 10:30 9 -noon 10:30 Pastor’s 8am
Holy Communion Sewing Ladies Class Men’s Prayer
9:15am Sunday Breakfast
6-7:30 pm 6-7:30 pm
Girl Scouts Girl Scouts
25 26 27 28 29 30
8 & 10:30 9 -noon 10:30 am
Holy Communion Sewing Ladies Pastor’s Class
PLAN AHEAD - CONTINUING OPPORTUNITIES TO GROW IN FAITH:
Pastor’s Class continues on Thursdays at 10:30am
Healing - (1st Tuesdays) at 7pm
Chant and Contemplation (2nd Thursdays) at 7pm
REMINDERS: AA meets in the church gym on Saturdays and Sundays at 7 pm
St. Matthew Staff
Pastor - The Rev. Joel L. Zeiders Director of Music - Alan Hack
Parish Assistant - Sandra Washburn Office Aide - Elaine Stauffer
Sexton - Robert Allen Preschool Teacher - Cherry Slusser
Webmasters - Richard Eyerly Preschool Assistant - Luann Shellenberger
Patricia Eyerly Youth Leader - Kayla McCready
Congregation Council - 2010
Paul Conard - President John Riley Jr. - Vice President
Harry Strine III - Treasurer Katy Miller - Secretary
Jill Zahay Connie Kline Rick Knoebel
Randy Ruckle Karl Schaefer Steve Shaffer
James Slusser Laura Sones Pastor Joel Zeiders
Happy 150th Birthday to our brothers and sisters in the Lutheran Church in Liberia! Please sign
our congregation’s birthday card (on the table in the gathering area) by Easter Sunday, April 4. The card will be sent
with those from other congregations of our synod to the Founder’s Day celebration in Liberia on April 28, 2010.