Archive for the ‘Life as it Happens…’ Category

On May 12, 2012, my dear wife Monica will be graduating Summa Cum Laude from West Chester University with a degree in Elementary Education.  This is the culmination of a journey that marked a new beginning for her 6 years ago.  She gracefully and courageously took on the challenge of going back to school while also actively caring for Amber and supporting the wild ride that my career path has taken us on since the turn of the century.  Night after night of classes at DCCC followed by hour-long commutes to WCU and now to student teaching.  She came home from experiences in 3 different schools always showing her deep love for the children she has encountered (even the ones that are…well…challenging).

Earlier this week, with graduation drawing near, I actually heard her say “this is not a big deal”.    I thought “NOT A BIG DEAL?!”  Please help me get that idea out of her head!  Please help me make this a big deal.

Send her a card or a letter of congratulations. Leave your mark on her Facebook Timeline.

Graduation is on Saturday at 11am.  We’re going out for dinner afterwards, but will be home later in the day.  You want to stop by (say some time between 4:30 and 8ish)?  Let me know!  We’re not throwing a party…but if you want to come by to hang out and visit for a while, just shoot an email to matt.staniz@gmail.com or hit my Facebook Inbox.

No need to send/bring a gift…I just want to make sure she knows how many people are proud and excited that she has accomplished what she set out to do.

Mailing address:  Monica Staniz, 115 Biddle Rd., Paoli, PA 19301.

Thanks, everyone!

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It is with all of the excitement, surprise and sadness that profound change brings that I have been announcing over the past three days that I have accepted a call (church-talk for “job offer”) from Saint Luke Lutheran Church in Devon, PA to become their Pastor for Youth, Family, and Service.  I will be working side-by-side with Pastor Susan Ericsson, which I consider to be a great blessing (and a lot of fun).

The sadness comes from leaving a community and a congregation that I love and that has been the source of friendship and joy over the past seven years.  The following letter was mailed earlier this week to the members of Temple Lutheran Church and presented last night to the congregation council:

“I am confident of this, that the one who began a good work among you will bring it to completion by the day of Jesus Christ.”
(Philippians 1:6)

August 2, 2011

To the people of Temple Lutheran Church,

I am saddened to announce that the time has come to conclude my service as pastor of Temple Lutheran Church.  On Sunday, July 31, I accepted a call to join the pastoral staff of St. Luke Lutheran Church in Devon, Pennsylvania.

The hardest thing about accepting this new call is concluding the ministry I have shared with you as Temple Lutheran Church.  I am sad to leave; I have been forever shaped and blessed by our time together; it has been an honor and a joy to serve as your pastor. I will miss you.

I have been amazed at what God has done during the time that we have been partners in ministry.   Just over seven years ago, it was clear that God was calling me to Havertown.  Today, it is equally clear that God is now calling me to a new place.  There is no other reason that I am leaving Temple Lutheran Church.  I am sad to leave, but also very excited for this new call.

My tenure as pastor will conclude on Sunday, September 11, 2011.  Until that date, I remain excited and committed to our ministry together as Temple Lutheran Church.  I will be working with the congregation council and our synod staff to prepare for the change and transition ahead. You can expect to be kept informed in the weeks to come.

The future of Temple Lutheran Church remains in God’s capable hands as each of you are invited to participate in the good work that will continue to unfold as you do God’s work with your hands.  You will always remain in my prayers and close to my heart.  I am forever grateful to have been a part of your lives and the ministry we have shared.  Thank you.

Sincerely,

Pastor Matt Staniz

I thank God for Temple Lutheran Church and am confident in the faithfulness of the people there to continue the good work that I have had the privilege to be a part of these past years.  I am also looking forward with wide-eyed excitement toward the ministry that I will become a part of at Saint Luke Lutheran Church.  I ask everyone to pray for both of these congregations.  Pray that they will experience a grace-filled faith that continuously sends them out into their lives and into the world to be people of faith, hope, compassion, and peace.

Pastor Matt, Monica, and Amber Staniz

In this present moment of transition, please also pray for Monica, Amber and I as we lose many things and relationships that have been blessing to us.  We will be moving soon to Paoli, PA and Amber will begin 4th grade in a new school.  We are excited and happy, but also nervous, uncertain, and sad.  Big change can do that!

I will begin at Saint Luke Lutheran Church on September 26th.  I will share more news as it happens!

I have been blessed with a remarkable family consisting of my wife Monica and daughter Amber.  Monica and I were married in 1998 and Amber was born in 2002.

As a pastor, I make it a high priority to keep my family more important to me than anything else that I am a part of in ministry.  Healthy ministry needs leaders that do not neglect their central calling to love the people closest to them.  I also find that ministry that truly reflects the joy and love of God sends me home energized to be with the two people I love more than anything.

I am also truly blessed to have a wife and daughter that are genuinely invested in the ministry that God calls me to participate in.  They are connected out of love for me.  More importantly, Monica and Amber also love Jesus and the world that God has placed us in together.  They participate in God’s mission because God has called them in the same way that all followers of Jesus are called.

A little experiment with two songs that have the same chords. As I placed them side by side, I began to see a new narrative. Also my first attempt at recording/mixing audio

An original song I wrote as a “video Christmas card” in 2010.

Come to Us, Emmanuel

Here we are, mid-December
Trying our hardest to remember
What it is we’re celebrating here

The days are short, the darkness lengthens
So we cling to the promise that strengthens
That in this place our God has come near

Come to us, come to us Emmanuel

Angels singing, “To God the glory”
As we enter into the story
And meet the savior Jesus at his birth

Shepherds run to the place where
The baby lies in the hay there
And the word of God resides on earth

Come to us, come to us Emmanuel
Come to us, abide with us Emmanuel

We long for peace
in the midst of violence
While hope is shattered by
our lingering silence
Justice will be torn from the hands of the weak
Unless a loving voice finds the courage to speak

And says
Come to us, come to us Emmanuel
Come to us, make us one Emmanuel
Make us peace, make us one Emmanuel

Come to us, come to us Emmanuel