St. Matthew Parish, East Stroudsburg
- There is a music director who directs the adult choir and schedule the cantors.
- There are two children choirs (1rst-5th grade and 6th-8th grade)
- There is a high school choir that sings at the 6:00pm Mass
- There are four Hispanic choirs (including a children’s choir).
Schedule for Mass, Sacraments, Devotions:
- Monday and Friday – noon (60-90 people)
- Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday – 8:00am (20-40 people)
- Friday Spanish – 6:30pm (30-40 people)
- English: Vigil 4:00pm, Sunday 8:00am, 10:45am, 12:15pm, 6:00pm
- Spanish: Sunday 9:15am and 2:00pm
Baptism: English: Saturday Evening (monthly) or Sunday’s during the 12:15 mass; Spanish Saturday at noon (monthly)
- There is a long history of Eucharistic Adoration in the Church Tuesday – Friday from 12:00pm – 6:30pm.
Parish Pastoral Council
Recently the parish council has been expanded to eleven members to better represent the diversity of the parish. There are goals and objectives to accomplish each year that were originally driven from a parish survey. The committee is just starting to discuss the development of a strategic plan. The new members are energetic and eager to be more involved. The current areas of focus for development: A safety committee, a committee on intergeneration education, and the restructuring of our social concerns committee with a specific charge.
Parish Finance Council
The Finance Committee has four members. The committee has developed, with the help of the business manager, a very good financial reporting system that allows the committee to understand the finances of the parish. Management and detailed reporting is emailed prior to the meetings. This committee could use a couple of new members.
RCIA: There currently exists an English and a Spanish RCIA track overseen by our Deacon and a Deacon Candidate. They have worked hard to develop a committee to help facilitate and plan RCIA. The last two years there have been fifteen to twenty individuals going through our RCIA / RCIC programs.
Parish Religious Education for Children and Youth
The parish has an extremely active religious education program with a track on Sunday and Monday evening. A strong sacramental preparation program exists with confirmation occurring in ninth grade. There are a lot of service opportunities for our children and their families. A new vacation bible school program has also started. The teachers are generous with their time and serve the parish in many ways when called upon.
College, Youth and Young Adult Ministry
The full time youth director (recent college graduate) is just completing his first year and is doing a good job. The high school youth program has greatly improved thanks to a new committee of parents and students. Our activities see between 25 and 35 students. A young couple came forward this year and is helping to start a young adult group. The Campus ministry program is developing. A good relationship exists between the university and the parish. We are working with the college to have a place to operate out of the college in addition to the space we have at the parish.
There is an active Hispanic Ministry program that represents fourteen different countries with the greatest population coming from Ecuador. This community has a weekly prayer group, several novenas throughout the year, many celebrations, weekly house Masses and blessings, and at least three retreats a year. Sunday Mass (a second mass was started this year) attendance has continued to grow from 133 to 335 people.
Knights of Columbus
A large group exists at the parish that is very supportive to the priests and the parish. There are at least 40 men who are very active. They are very involved in the Festival as well as coordinating many other community events.
The pastor coordinates the hospital ministry which is shared with three parishes. Current call schedule reflects: St. John’s 2 days, St. Luke’s 1 day, and St. Matthew’s 4 days. The deacon works with the Hospital and parishes to schedule extraordinary ministers of communion.
Nursing Home Ministry
St. Matthew’s Parish provides Mass at four nursing homes.
Service to the Poor
The parish has historically had a food pantry that serves those in need in the parish. Recently, through collaboration with the University, the pantry also serves forty college students per week.
Each Saturday the parish provides a space for approximately forty homeless people to gather and receive a warm meal. Winter hours are 2:00pm-9:00pm and summer hours are 2:00pm – 6:00pm. The parish community is very supportive and committed to this initiative.