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September 2014


  • The MessengerSpecial Edition

    September 18, 2014Nationalchurch.org

    This Special Edition of the Messenger is being shared with you to highlight three extraordinary moments in the life and his-tory of our church:

    Dedication of a Plaque Honoring Bishop James K. Mathews and Eunice Mathews on October 5, at our 11:15am worship service at Metropolitan Memorial: we will dedicate a permanent, marble plaque in the sanctuary at Metropolitan Memorial to beloved members of our church family: the late Bishop James K. Mathews and his amazing wife, Eunice Mathews, who celebrated her 100th birthday on April 29th.

    Included in this Messenger are highlights of their remarkable lives and the enormous impact that their lives had on our church, our denomination, and the world. We are honored to have this permanent reminder in our sanctuary of the mission-centered lives that they lived.

    We are also honored to have as our guest preacher for this service Bishop Marcus Matthews, Bishop of the Baltimore Washington Conference. The Mathews family is hosting a brief reception for the congregation in the Great Hall following the worship service.

    Combined Worship Service, October 12, 10am, at our St. Lukes Mission Center (3655 Calvert St., NW): The Sunday following the installation of the Mathews plaque, all three of our worshipping communities will join together in worship at our St. Lukes Mission Center, celebrating the many, many ministries that operate out of this facility. Following worship in the sanctuary at the Mission Center at 10am, we will have an opportunity to tour the facilities, including the commercial grade kitchen which processes almost 1,000 pounds of food a week for our Campus Kitchen Project, the St. Lukes Aim Hire shelter, the hypothermia shelter, the Shalom Place hostel where mission groups stay when they are working on mission projects around our city, the Community garden, and our cooperative work with Friendship Place. You will also have an opportunity to learn more about all of these ministries and programs and to get involved. Note: This single service will take the place of the 9am and 11:15am services at Metropolitan Memorial and the 11am service at Wesley. There will be no Sunday school classes at Metropolitan or Wesley on this Sunday, and childcare will be available during worship at St. Lukes.

    Catching Fire: A Concert for Inclusion and Equality with Special Guest, Rev. Frank Schaefer, October 17, 8pm, Metropolitan Memorial: On October 17, the Metropolitan Church is proud to host a very special evening bringing together exceptional musicians, inspirational leaders and an engaged community of activists. Proceeds from this unique event will benefit the Reconciling Ministries Network, the national organization that mobilizes United Methodists and their congrega-tions to affirm and advance full inclusion of LGBTQ persons in all facets of congregational and denominational life. The concert organizing committee is a collaboration of members of Metropolitan and Foundry churches, and is being sponsored by a growing list of United Methodist congregations in the area. Learn more on page 3!

    One of the hallmark features of our Metropolitan community of faith is our heart for and commitment to mission ministries. We hope that you will join us for all of these wonderful celebrations of mission at Metropolitan!


    Rev. Charlie Parker

    Sunday, October 12

    Mathews Plaque DedicationPlease join us on Sunday October 5, at the 11:15am service for an unveiling/commemoration of a plaque honoring the life and ministry of Bishop James K. and Eunice Jones Mathews long time members of our church family. We are honored to have our resident Bishop, Marcus Matthews, as the preacher for this service.

    Bishop Mathews, who died in 2010 at the age of 97, was one of the longest-serving bishops in the United Methodist Church. His career spanned many continents, including India, Africa, and Asia. Throughout his life, Mathews maintained close ties with India, and remained close friends with Rajmohan and Arun Gandhi, grandsons of Mahatma Gandhi. (continued on page 2).

    In Honor

  • The Life of Bishop James K. Mathews and Eunice Jones Mathews


    Serve Now!Sign up for our many ongoing parish service activities! It is easier than ever for you to get connected with our online vol-unteer scheduling system at nationalchurch.org/servenow!

    (Cont. from page 1) Bishop Mathews was first elected Bishop of the Methodist Church in 1956 in Lucknow; however, he declined, suggesting that Indians should be ministered to by their own people. In 1960 Mathews was again elected Bishop by the Northeastern Jurisdictional Conference in Washington, DC. He served as Bishop in both the New Eng-land Area and the Baltimore-Washington Conference as well as in Zimbabwe, the Albany Area and New York City.

    Bishop Mathews was active in the Civil Rights struggles of the 1960s. As early as 1960, Mathews met with prominent African-Americans to discuss growing racial tensions. In 1963, Bishop Mathews was invited to join President Kennedy at the White House to dis-cuss civil rights. He participated in the 1963 March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom,

    and was present at Dr. Martin Luther Kings I have a Dream speech. On Easter Sunday in 1964, he and African-American Bishop Charles Golden were barred from entering an all-white Methodist church in Jackson, Mississippi -- and subsequently arrested.

    Bishop Mathews, along with then Archbishop (later Cardinal) William Baum, created an ecumenical initiative called the Inter-Faith Conference of Metropolitan Washington in 1978, which is now the most widely representative such body in the country.

    Bishop Mathews was the author of 9 books, including, South of the Himalayas, 1955; Eternal Val-ues in a World of Change, 1957; The Road to Brotherhood, 1958; To the End of the Earth, 1959; A Church Truly Catholic, 1969; Set Apart to Serve, 1985; The Matchless Weapon: Satyagraha, 1994; A Global Odyssey, 2000; and Brother Joe: A 20th Century Apostle, 2006.

    Bishop Mathews was married to Eunice Jones Mathews for over 70 years. Eunice, now 100, is the daughter of the well-known Methodist evangelist, E. Stanley Jones, who was described as the great-est missionary since Saint Paul. Jones and his wife Mabel Lossing Jones were Methodisms premier missionary couple of the twentieth century. (estanleyjonesfoundation.com)

    Growing up in India, Eunice Mathews witnessed her parents plant the seeds of Gods word and nurture them into sizable, self-sustaining Methodist communities. After graduating from American University in Washington D.C., Eunice began her own extensive career in humanitarian work and missionary service. She joined and assisted her father, whose lectures and writings took him around the world, and revolutionized missionary thinking by encouraging individuals to receive Christ within the framework of their unique indigenous contexts. It was while accompanying her father on a lecture circuit in India that Eunice made the acquaintance of James K. Mathews, to whom she was wed on June 1, 1940.

    Eunices understanding and efficient professional support of her husbands clerical responsibilities fashioned their marriage as a coequal partnership; as Bishop Mathews wrote in his autobiography, A Global Odyssey, these very memoirs should be entitled We Did It Together.

    And together they tirelessly advocated for peace and goodwill, moving among personages such as President George A. and Mrs. Barbara Bush, President Bill and Mrs. Hillary Rodham Clinton, Pope Paul VI, Mahatma Gandhi, Indira Gandhi, and the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

    Indeed, Dr. King once told Eunice of his deep appreciation for her father, who was a personal friend and biographer of Mahatma Gandhi because, she said, it was reading Dr. Jones biography that prompted him to adopt his doctrine of non-violence in the Civil Rights Movement.

    Mrs. Mathews lifelong call to mission beckons her still, and she continues to answer it with enthusiasm. As a woman and United Methodist, as a scholar, as a missionary and mother, Eunice Mathews occupies a special place in The United Methodist Church, one where historical legacy and future direction intersect and inform one another.

    Following the service, there will be a reception where you can greet members of the Mathews family. Please contact Helen Simon, Executive Assistant to Senior Pastor Rev. Dr. Charles Parker, with any questions, at hsimon@nationalchurch.org or 202-363-4900, Ext. 109.

    Eugene C. Blake, Sir Francis Ibiam, and Bishop James K. Mathews meet at the World Council of Churches (1963)

    Bishop James K. Mathews and Eunice Jones Mathews

    Eunice Mathews greets her friend Usha Gandhi, wife of Rajmohan Gan-dhi, grandson of Mahatma Gandhi.

  • 3Eunice Mathews by Penny PaganoEunice Treffry Jones Mathews has lived an extraordinary life that most of us can only imagine.

    Born on April 29, 1914, she is the daughter of the preeminent Methodist missionary E. Stanley Jones whose work in India brought him in touch with many twentieth century world leaders.

    Her mother, Mabel Lossing Jones, who grew up in Iowa, was commissioned as a missionary under the Womens Foreign Missionary Society of the Methodist Church. She set out for India in 1904 as a missionary and started a teachers training school in Lucknow, India, where she met E. Stanley Jones. They were married there in 1911. Their first appointment was to a small city northwest of Lucknow

    named Sitapur where they spent the next 35 years and where she continued her work as an educator setting up a boys primary school. She pioneered efforts to have women as teachers in her boys school and corresponded with Mahatma Gandhi about her ideas for primary education.