St. Matthew's is known as the "smaller" United Church within the growing town of Richmond Hill. We encourage our members to become a family in God's love. Members find good friends in the pews of this congregation. Our Strengths are Fellowship, Outreach, Music.
St. Matthew's United Church started in a portable classroom in 1957. The first activities of St. Matthew's took place in Walter Scott Public School in Richmond Hill during the summer of 1956 when a church vacation school was organized. The response resulted in the formation of a Sunday School. On the last Sunday of September 1956, the first church service was held in one of the portable class rooms at Walter Scott School. For several Sundays the services were conducted by the Rev. C.A. Myers.
In the spring of 1957, a portable building was erected on a five acre site on Crosby Ave., where our church now stands. This site was purchased by the Toronto Home Mission Council of the United Church of Canada. A service of Constitution was held by the Presbytery of York on Oct. 29th, 1957 when the congregation was officially recognized as a self governing congregation within the United Church of Canada. The Church Building Fund was started in 1958 and construction proceeded in 1960.
In 1979, in response to the desperate plight of the refugees forced to flee from Vietnam, a Refugee Sponsorship Fund was established. The first family arrived in November. In May, 1980, an additional seven persons were sponsored. In July, a co-operative sponsorship with St. Mary's Anglican Church was undertaken and the two churches began a 12 year sponsorship for these families.
In 1988 the church added hand bell choirs after hearing a concert performed in our church. Now the church boasts three octaves of hand bells and 3 octaves of chimes.
In 1989, the church decided to begin another major project: affordable housing. The project was approved and construction began in the spring of 1990. Twenty-three units now share our property and provide a comfortable, yet affordable place to live. During the construction, renovations to the church itself were also done doubling the size of the church Hall and adding a secretary's office, minister's office, music room and nursery.
We continue with a strong focus on outreach activities that support many good causes. They have included the following: the Richmond Hill food bank (since 1986), Yellow Brick House, Leeder House, Hill House Hospice and Foster Child Program of Canada.
St. Matthew's is an active, perhaps small, church but is known for its friendliness and for working together to build a better community. For a detailed history view the historical sketch.