When Jesus called him, Matthew at once left everything and followed the young rabbi.
We celebrate the Feast of St. Matthew, our patron saint in September. An apostle and evangelist, Matthew is identified with Levi, a tax collector mentioned by Mark and Luke. In the Gospel according to Matthew, it is said that Matthew was seated in the custom-house when Jesus bade him, “Follow me.”
Tax collectors were viewed as extortionists who took money from their own people to further the cause of Rome and to line their own pockets. They were spurned as traitors and outcasts – not the sort of person that a devout Jew would have had among his closest associates. Yet Jesus noted that it was the publican rather than the proud Pharisee who prayed the acceptable prayer, “Lord, be merciful to me, a sinner.”
After the 10:15 am Sunday Service, we gather in the courtyard for a picnic lunch followed by a community FunFest for kids of all ages. In past years, activities included: a bouncy house, face painting, sparkle hair, carnival-like games, crafts and a magician!