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St. Matthew’s celebrates 25 years, says goodbye to rector

Father Steve Gruman visits with former senior wardens who served under his tenure at St. Matthew's Episcopal Church. CONTRIBUTED
Father Steve Gruman visits with former senior wardens who served under his tenure at St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church. CONTRIBUTED

MADISON – Members of St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church will commemorate a milestone in its history, and at the same time, say goodbye to a respected leader.

St. Matthew’s will celebrate its 25th anniversary on Sept. 9-10 with special activities and parties. Also on Sept. 10, the parish will say farewell to its rector, Rev. Steve Gruman, and his family at a special service. Gruman has served for 16 years at St. Matthew’s.

“We welcome all to celebrate God’s blessings at St. Matthew’s over the past quarter century in Madison, Alabama,” spokesperson Geoffrey S. Beech said.

Back in 1991, “a dedicated group of Episcopalians set off a mission to build a home for Christ in the heart of our budding community. From the warehouse days, to breaking ground on Hughes Road, to our current expanded campus, the people of St. Matthew’s have shared God’s blessings with so many,” Beech said.

“Our parish has thrived as we seek God in our lives and communities, as Jesus showed us by example,” Beech said.

The 25th celebration will begin with an open house on Sept. 9 from 6 to 9 p.m. Guests will be entertained with live music. Wine, beer and cheese will be served. “Visit with Father Steve and remember our last 25 years,” Beech said.

On Sept. 10 at 2:30 p.m., Bishop Sloan will administer the Rites of Holy Baptism and Confirmation. “Afterwards, we will continue the feast with our annual pig roast and bury a time capsule, representing our current parish members, by our labyrinth at 5:30 p.m.,” Beech said.

After 35 years as rector of parishes in Wetumpka and Madison, Gruman “is charting a new path beyond parish leadership. Steve and Trudi are blessed with six children and 11 grandchildren and are expecting a twelfth,” Beech said. “The energy and warmth Father Steve shared will be dearly missed, but our parish is strong and bright and deeply connected with each other through Christ.”

For anniversary information, email geoff.beech@nasa.gov.

St. Matthew’s address is 786 Hughes Road. For more information, call 256-864-0788, email rector@stmatthewsmadison.org or visit stmatthewsmadison.org.

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