St. Matthew House

A parish sponsors a home for low-income persons with disabilities

An icon of the Apostle Matthew welcomes visitors to an unusual apartment building in Columbia, a suburb of Baltimore, Maryland. Beneath the figure are the words of Jesus from St. Matthew’s Gospel: “I was a stranger and you took me in.”

The text aptly fits the purpose of St. Matthew House, home to 15 low-income adults with physical disabilities. It is a project that the Fr. Raymond Velencia, rector of Columbia’s Orthodox Church of St. Matthew, sees as a “work of the Lord.”

In 1994, the congregation formed a nonprofit organization that brought together governmental, corporate and social groups to finance, build and manage the $1.6 million facility. The project was inspired by parishioner Maria Turley, a nurse with multiple sclerosis who died last year.

For the full story, click on:

(from the Orthodox Peace Fellowship’s In Communion Magazine’s news reports: )


Sadly, the devil seems to have sabotaged this Orthodox Christian ministry. The St. Matthew House now functions as apartments for low-income people, and is no longer connected with the Church. I’m choosing not to disclose the details, the charges and countercharges against certain persons involved in the ministry.

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September 2007
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