Field Education Sites

St. Matthew's United Methodist Church

435 Central Street
Acton, MA 01720
Phone: (978) 263-2822
Web address:

Contact Person(s):

Rev. Steve Garnaas-Holmes

Organization Description:

St. Matthew's is a relatively progressive suburban church with emphases on spiritual formation, music and social justice, with an average of 150 in worship. Membership is 90% white, mostly professional, of mixed ages. Spiritual formation ministries include courses & small groups, shared experiences of contemplative spirituality, and alternative worship experiences. The music program is traditional, including an adult vocal choir, both adult and children's bell choirs, and occasional concerts by visiting musicians. We are expanding our music ministry to include a wider variety of styles and groups (children's choir, contemplative or Taize group, etc). Social justice ministries involve both outreach and advocacy.

Opportunities for Student Involvement:

St. Matthew's provides opportunities to participate in diverse areas of the congregation's life depending on the student's unique gifts and interests, including: children's and youth ministries, adult education, music, preaching, worship preparation and leadership, church administration, pastoral care, and social action. After consultation with the pastor, teaching parish committee, and HDS, the student will prepare a learning agreement to meet strategic goals for professional development.

Commute/Transportation Information:

Acton is an upper middle class suburb located 26 miles west of Boston. The church is on a main road in Acton, just off Rte 2 at Exit 41. Excellent commuter rail service is provided, but students may find transportation by car easier.

Arts of Ministry Competencies Offered:

  • Administration and Program Development
  • Denominational Polity
  • Pastoral Care and Counseling
  • Public Leadership, Community Organizing, and Planning
  • Preaching and Worship
  • Religious Education and Spiritual Development


Weekly meetings between student and supervisor. Monthly meetings with the Teaching Parish Committee.

Additional Information:

Number of Students: 1

Total Compensation: $4000.00

Type of Compensation: direct pay from site

Additional Notes: We are able to provide opportunities for just about anything that can be helpful to a student who intends to enter parish ministry, particularly in the United Methodist Church.

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