Welcome to St. Matthew’s Chapel

St. Matthew’s holds Sunday services in the summer from the last Sunday in June or the first Sunday in July until Labor Day weekend in September. It is affiliated with the US Protestant Episcopal Church USA, and uses the liturgy in the 1976 Book of Common Prayer. Instead of having one rector preside over all the services, we invite a different priest each Sunday to be our celebrant including retired bishops and the current bishop of New Hampshire, Robert Hirschfeld. Each Sunday is then an adventure with a new and different person preaching, and we are able learn the many possible ways to understand our faith. The current year schedule is found by clicking this link.

Services begin at 10:00 am and there is a coffee hour afterwards where we can meet new friends or catch up with old friends. The New Hampshire summers are very pleasant, and on a typical sunny, one not only enjoys the company during coffee hours but also the pleasant gentle breezes.

St. Matthew’s Chapel continues its commitment to the Bancroft House, the Littleton All Saints Church Food Cupboard and the NH Council of Churches.

The St. Matthew’s Committee

Picture of St Matthews Committee

From: Front to Back, Left to Right – Holly Hayward, Hilary Vielleux, Joni Prell (Secretary), Alice Poole,
Ralph Bradley, Betsy Holcombe, Jack Ernsberger (Co Chair), Mike Claflin, Karen Ensberger (Co Chair), Shep Holcombe, Ross Vielleux. (Missing Alice Claflin, Treasurer.)

 

St. Matthew’s does not have a vestry as most Episcopal churches have. Instead, it is guided by the St. Matthew’s Committee. All members take part in getting the church ready for the summer. Hillary Vielleux is in charge of inviting priests to preside each Sunday and she sets the service schedule. Mike Claflin supervised the restoration project that is described below. Joni Prell is the Secretary, Alice Claflin is the Treasurer, and finally, we are fortunate to have two dedicated chairs, Jack and Karen Ensberger

 

In Memory of
Barbara “Serry” Serafini
1937-2018

Barbara Serafini with daughter Holly Hayward

 

For many years, St. Matthew’s Chapel operated under the dedicated leadership of Serry Serafini. She did everything to keep St. Matthew’s Chapel vibrant including serving as the organist. Along with her role at St. Matthew’s Chapel, she had a strong presence in her community. She ran the Sugar Hill Sampler for 56 years and in 2016 was featured on NH Chronicles as one of the historic sites in America. Serry started the Early Settlers Museum in 1972 to document her family’s history and the history of the surrounding area. She was also active in the North Country Chamber Players for 40 years, serving on the board and securing a sizable endowment for them. She was genuinely publicly spirited, and she continues to be missed by all.

 

St. Matthew’s Restoration
2019

2019 was an important year for St. Matthew's Chapel. After having a building structural assessment done, it was determined the Chapel foundation needed to be stabilized and drainage installed. The Land and Community Heritage Investment Program (LCHIP) granted $50,000 towards the needed work, and an anonymous matching grant of $50,000 was given . The final funds ($50,000) was raised to meet the total cost.
The work was accomplished by Arnold Graton, a renowned Restoration Conservationist from Holderness, NH. He is a well-known for his restoration of the Mayflower and several covered bridges in New Hampshire. He lifted up the Chapel and moved it off its foundation to repair and stabilize it and build the needed drainage. The project was overseen by Michael Claflin (Clerk of the Works and member of the Chapel Committee). It took about eight weeks to complete. The work began late September 2019. Mr. Grafton is a 2020 Preservation Achievement Award Winner. Please click here to view the YouTube video.

 

Arnold Grafton