“I have held many things in my hands, and I have lost them all; but whatever I have placed in God's hands, that I still possess.” - Martin Luther




Every Sunday: Sunday School 9 am, Worship and Holy Communion** 10 am, time of fellowship 11 am.

Also every Sunday: Missouri Micronesian Church-NALC  (Pastor Phillip Istaro) worship service at 2 pm.

Choir practice. If you like to sing, please join us at 7 pm each Wednesday.

Friday, Oct. 5 - Acoustical Jam, 7-10 pm 
Sunday, Oct. 7 - the choir will sing
Wednesday, Oct. 10 - Consistory meeting, 6 pm
Wednesday, Oct. 17 - Women's Fellowship, 6 pm
Sunday, Oct. 21 - potluck meal following worship
Saturday, October 27 - CHURCH WORK DAY, starting at 9 am

Coming up in November:

Friday, November 2- acoustical jam, 7-10 pm
 Sunday, November 4 - the choir will sing
Friday, November 9 - preparation for turkey dinner
Saturday, November 10 - Annual Turkey Dinner fundraiser, 4-6 pm (or until the food runs out).
**All are welcome to receive the Lord's Body and Blood who are baptized in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit and believe that Jesus Christ, crucified and risen, is truly present in, with and under the forms of bread and wine for the for­­giveness of sins, life and salvation. 

 Check out St. Matthew's FACEBOOK page! 

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About St. Matthew's Evangelical Lutheran Church

St. Matthew's Evangelical Lutheran is a member congregation of the North American Lutheran Church (NALC). The NALC is "Christ Centered", "Mission Driven", "Traditionally Grounded", and Congregationally Focused".

St. Matthew's is a small, friendly, dedicated community of faith, witnessing to the truth of the Gospel in Riverside and the surrounding community. We offer a traditional worship service, Bible-based preaching and teaching, Sunday School classes for children and adults, an active women's fellowship, monthly pot-luck dinners, Vacation Bible School, and other special activities. St. Matthew's was founded in 1844, on the same spot where it now stands, and is one of the oldest churches in continuous existence in the Kansas City area. You may read more about our history HERE.

OUR BELIEFS: We subscribe to the NALC Confession of Faith, which accepts the Lutheran Confessions found in the Book of Concord (the Unaltered Augsburg Confession, Luther's Small Catechism, Luther's Large Catechism, the Ecumenical Creeds, etc.)

Whether you are a new resident of the Riverside area or are just seeking a church home, we invite you to worship with us at St. Matthew's and participate in our activities.


There are three member congregations of the North American Lutheran Church meeting in Riverside: St. Matthew's Evangelical Lutheran, Missouri Micronesian Church, and Ebenezer Oromo Evangelical Church of KC. The three congregations have enjoyed meeting together from time to time, for special services (i.e.Maundy Thursday, Christmas Eve), Reformation Sunday, Vacation Bible School, etc.

Chuukese is the native tongue spoken and sung at the services of the Missouri Micronesian Church (NALC) that meets at 2 pm on Sunday afternoons at St. Matthew’s. Phillip Istaro is the pastor. The Great Plains Mission District has consecrated Phillip as an NALC pastor.

Chuukese /tʃuːˈkiːz/, also rendered Trukese /trʌˈkiːz/, is a Trukic language of the Austronesian language family spoken primarily on the islands of Chuuk in the Caroline Islands in Micronesia. There are communities of speakers on Pohnpei and Guam as well. Estimates show that there are about 45,900 speakers in Micronesia. The language is also known as Chuuk, Lagoon Chuukese, Ruk, Truk or Trukese, and is spoken by about 48,000 people on the islands of Chuuk in the Caroline Islands in Micronesia. Missionaries devised a way to write Chuukese using the Latin alphabet during the 19th century. In the 1970s linguists modified the missionaries' system with the addition of some accented letters.

Oromo is the native tongue spoken and sung at the services of the Ebenezer Oromo Evangelical Church of Kansas City (NALC). For several years this congregation met at St. Matthew’s, but has now purchased its own church building at 4800 NW Homestead Rd., Riverside, MO. Faisa Atomsa is the pastor. Faisa was ordained as an NALC pastor in 2013.

Oromo (Afaan Oromo / Oromiffa / ኦሮምኛ) Oromo is a Cushitic language spoken by about 30 million people in Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia and Egypt and is the 3rd largest language in Africa. The Oromo people are the largest ethnic group in Ethiopia and account for more than 40% of the population. The Ethiopian Evangelical Church Mekane Yesus (EECMY) is the second largest Lutheran body in the world, with over 6 million members.

St. Matthew’s Evangelical Lutheran also has some members who are from the Micronesian Island of Kosrae! They speak the Kosrae language.

Resources for Bible Study and Devotions

Adult Sunday School. We invite you to join us in studying and discussing God's word at 9 am each Sunday. We are studying the Gospel of John, using a study book by Max Lucado.
On-Line Bible (Bible Gateway) Look up scriptures in various translations and languages.
Our Daily Bread devotional from RBC Ministries. We also have free copies of Our Daily Bread in print.
Proverbs 31 Ministries (for the ladies)


You can help with some of these by simply purchasing a few extra items when you go to the store, or donating items in good condition that you do not need.

St. Matthew’s Kids Camp Fund: Each summer we send several children to Riverside Lutheran Bible Camp in Story City, Iowa. The kids have some fundraisers to help with the cost. In the past they have done car washes, yard work, and had a soup supper, etc. Donations are also needed. We have a collection jar on the treat table. Where we fall short, the Camp can provide some “camperships”. In 2017 we sent 11 children to camp.

Bessie's House: We have a list of items that are needed by Bessie's House, a wonderful ministry in Kansas City that ministers to underprivileged and homeless people.

Shower for ECH/Steppingstones): Periodically, we collect household items for the young people in group housing and for those who have graduated to their own apartments. Some examples are twin-size bedding, pots and pans, dishes, flatware, kitchen towels, bath towels, wastebaskets, lamps, etc. We will have a collection box marked "Steppingstones". See Helen H. with any questions.

Christmas Mitten Tree: During Christmas season we have collected mittens, gloves, hats, etc. In the past those items were donated to the Salvation Army and ECH (see above).

Food/Supplies pantry: the first Sunday of each month, bring nonperishable groceries and non-food personal and household items (things that can't be purchased with food stamps) to be shared with those less fortunate in our church/community.

: Some of our members came to the US from the Micronesian islands and have told us of some of the needs of people living on the island of Kosrae, in the small village of Walung (on the SW part of the island shown above). This island is more than 6,600 miles westward from Kansas City (over 1/4 of the way around the globe)! The people engage primarily in subsistence fishing and farming. There are no stores to purchase goods in Walung. In 2013 we shipped over 130 t-shirts, personal care items, and school supplies. The children sent us many wonderful thank you letters when they received their school supplies. Later we sent 10 boxes of bags, totes and personal care items for the women and clothing for children 0-5 years old, and again received a large envelope of thank you notes, and we collected 9 boxes of school supplies, as an "Action Team" project through Thrivent Financial. Thrivent provided $250 to help fund this project. We will likely have other similar projects and will post them when we do.


Here is information about how you can do some great things for your church or community through a Thrivent Action Team! You are eligible if you are a member of Thrivent Financial for Christians (formerly Thrivent Financial for Lutherans). If you have no Thrivent financial or insurance products you can still join as an Associate Member and will then be eligible to apply for an Action Team grant. Grants are in the form of a $250 debit card to be used to purchase supplies and other items for a fundraiser or other type of project that you and your team want to do. Thrivent furnishes various promotional material and up to 25 free t-shirts for each project. Your team may consist of family members, friends or fellow church members (they do not need to be Thrivent members).

St. Matthew's has done several Action plan projects, i.e. work in the church nursery, School Supplies for Micronesia. There is more info HERE, or you may contact Mrs. Elliott at 913-636-4100.

NALC Information

Go HERE for the NALC website.
You will find the NALC monthly newsletter HERE.
See also our NALC page, where you will find information about the North American Lutheran Church, the Great Plains Mission District, and other news and information.

Missionaries of the NALC

Click HERE for information about the Missionaries of the North American Lutheran Church. The NALC has missionaries in China, Mongolia, India, Tanzania, and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

How to Find Us

Traveling south on I-29, take NW Gateway-Riverside exit (just south of 56th St exit). We are about 1/4 mile on the left side.

OR: From Vivion Rd & Gateway (Corner Cafe, Quik Trip), go north on Gateway about 3/4 mile.

OR: Go to MAPQUEST and enter: 5047 NW Gateway, Riverside, MO for a map of the area.

St. Matthew's Constitution and Bylaws

Click here to read the current constitution and bylaws for our church.

Emergency Assistance

St. Matthew's is a small congregation and has few resources available to assist with financial emergencies, such rent, utilities, gasoline, etc. We generally refer people with such needs to United Services, Hillcrest Transitional Housing , City Union Mission, and the Salvation Army. Please click HERE for the Northland Human Services/Senior Services Directory of other resources available through various agencies and organizations.

About our church and grounds

When the church was established in 1844 it was a log structure. After it was lost to fire, in 1876 the part of the building that is the sanctuary was built. In the 1920's the fellowship hall was built on, basement dug, and beautiful stained glass windows were installed. A bell tower was added. Today the bell resides in a separate brick structure next to the cemetery to the south of the church building. It is rung every Sunday to call us to worship, and often at the beginning of graveside services when burial is at East Slope Cemetery - one peal for each year of the person's life.

The beautiful plantings that you see in the church photos on this website are the result of the hard work and creativity of Helen H. In 2008, with the help of Mary Lou B., Helen cleaned out the area under the big stained glass window and planted these beautiful "knock-out" roses and other flowers and plants. We have enjoyed them every year since then. The way they set off our red doors is truly stunning!

Some other projects over the last several years that improve the appearance and function of the church building include the repainting of the church, new protective coverings for the stained glass windows that allows the beautiful colors to show through, new chairlift, new front doors (painted red again), a new roof, new handicap ramp and handrails, new bathroom fixtures, a new concrete pad for handicap parking, paved parking lot, fresh paint and a new ceiling in the fellowship hall next to the sanctuary, and new back doors and improved rear entries. In the fall of 2010 we installed new carpeting in the sanctuary. The sanctuary walls were renovated in January, 2012 and the dining room ceiling was redone in the Fall of 2012. In 2016 we completely renovated the kitchen, with new cabinets, large refrigerator and other improvements, and then put new flooring in the kitchen and dining room. We will soon be refinishing the hardwood floor in the fellowship area and on the stage.
2018: a broken water pipe in January and a failing septic system necessitated major work this year, including: major repair/renovation of men's restroom and ceilings near the restrooms; installation of two new septic tanks and correction of various plumbing issues; tear-out and reinstallation of kitchen cabinets and floor, and replacement of kitchen and hallway vinyl floor covering. In addition we have installed a small sink/work area in the dining room and new ceilings and lights in the kitchen and dining hall. The ladies are planning to replace the floor covering in the big Sunday School room and some painting of walls will be done.