Joint Venture with St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church
Wilton Presbyterian Church and St. Matthew’s are separate congregations with separate sanctuaries, but which uniquely share a common property and programming. There is common space between our churches that serves many purposes.
Wilton Presbyterian Church is an ecumenical experience. “We are blessed by a special relationship with St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church, and are challenged to clarify and enrich that ecumenical experience. We are more than two congregations sharing program and space. Indeed, we are all sisters and brothers in Christ.”
That was one of the mission statements of WPC’s Session in the early 1990’s. And it is the very first introduction we share with new members as they join WPC even now. To read the full history of this unique relationship, please click here.
We share space:
Our church complex is the most immediately visible symbol of our joint venture with St. Matthew’s. The two congregations share a campus of ten acres as a condominium association. The Presbyterian and Episcopal sanctuaries are owned by the respective individual churches. Everything else—from the building and grounds to the copy machine and toilet paper—are held in common and managed by a Wilton Episcopal Presbyterian Corporation (WEPCO) Board of Directors. This Board is comprised of an equal number of Presbyterians and Episcopalians. The physical complex itself is maintained by a maintenance engineer and managed by a common Facilities Coordinator who (among other things) schedules the functions and meetings of both congregations as well as community groups. Click here for more information about using space at WPC.
We share Christian Education together.
The Church School for children (pre-school through grade 7) is overseen by a joint committee: The Joint Children’s Christian Education Committee (JCCEC). Each congregation employs a Church School Coordinator who is the key staff person in this ecumenical church school venture.
We share youth ministry:
A Joint Youth Ministry provides program activities and spiritual formation for both Presbyterian and Episcopal young people. Guided cooperatively by staff members from each congregation, this Joint Youth Ministry includes activities for:
Senior high students: Senior High Fellowship; Annual mission trip to Washington, D.C.; various other service and fellowship opportunities;
Middle schoolers 6-7th fellowship and 8th Grade Confirmation; Sexuality Seminar for 6-7th grades.
We share mission:
We share in an annual service project through Homefront, where we rehab a local home.
We share worship:
During the year we worship together on select occasions that allow us to celebrate various aspects of our joint venture, including our children, youth, and music ministries. During the summer we worship together alternately at WPC and St. Matthew’s to renew our hospitality with one another. Here, we use liturgies combining the best of both worlds—Reformed and Anglican—in witness to our common Christian beliefs.