Parish History


The Orthodox Church of St. Matthew began as a mission parish in April 1988, The first service of the St Matthew community was held on the fifth Saturday of Lent at the Main Chapel at Ft Meade, MD. The first Divine Liturgy was celebrated by Father Gregory Pelesh, an Air Force Chaplain. Over the years, as the parish grew, it moved to increasingly larger facilities in Columbia, MD. On Pascha in 1994, the parish agreed to sponsor St. Matthew House, a facility for physically disabled adults. St. Matthew House was dedicated by Metropolitan Theodosius on April 25, 1999.

As the parish continued to grow, it decided to pursue the development of a permanent place of worship, to be located in the Kings Contrivance Village Center, adjacent to St. Matthew House. On February 27, 2007, the First Sunday of Great Lent, Divine Liturgy was celebrated in the new building. The Altar and Church were consecrated by Metropolitan Herman on May 10, 2008.

In 2008 the parish held its first Multi-Cultural festival, which is now an annual tradition, featuring live ethnic entertainment and delicious hand-made foods from around the globe. The festival takes place during the first weekend in October.

On March 6, 2011, Forgiveness Sunday, Father Constantine White joined St. Matthew as the presiding priest.

Today, our community consists of more than 100 families from a diverse group of ethnic backgrounds including Greek, Russian, Ukrainian, Romanian, Slovakian, Georgian, Arab, Egyptian, Ethiopian, Scandinavian, English, Irish, New Zealand, Chinese, Korean, and German. At the annual feast day of St. Matthew in November, the Agape Breakfast at Pascha, the parish picnic, and at the Multi-Cultural Festival the parish delights in the many ethnic specialties prepared by its members and described in the parish cookbook produced in the fall of 1999.

We are an active and welcoming parish, and look forward to meeting you at fellowship hour, which follows Divine Liturgy.