Fr. Matthew Garrison
Having spent nearly eighteen years working with Young Life (a relational ministry to teens), I see ministry is most effective when done in relationship. I'm grateful for St. Francis' allowing me to be a pastor not just of our parish, but a pastor to the community. My family has been blessed to develop relationships with families throughout Sanford in our short time here.
I have been blessed to have been married for more than 25 years to Trina. Our three kids--Eli, Josiah and Gillian--keep us running to football games, theater productions, soccer matches, and on the occasional Cook Out milkshake run. We move at a hectic pace, but my wife keeps us grounded, and is the glue that holds everything together.
When I'm not attending an activity, I enjoy hiking, fly fishing, soccer, and reading.
I'm thrilled to be a part of the St. Francis' community and see where the Lord takes us.
I recently graduated from Campbell University with Degree in Church Music Ministry. Joe and Leslie Hanna are my parents, and my siblings are Meg, Jonathan, Emily and Cameron.
When I am not working part time at the church, and being a full time student, I am teaching piano, practicing, and sleeping because the college exhaustion is real.
What I love about St. Francis is that it has always been such a welcoming community that genuinely cares about me, and its members want to serve me as best as they can. My time in leadership here has been such a blessing as I am still learning exactly how to serve the parish with the gift of music. St. Francis has always been a safe place for me to grow and learn more about my profession and how to use my gifts to serve my community and glorify God.
Director of Communications
I am Sanford born and bred. My husband, Tom, and I are blessed to have our children, Sarah Reese Womack and husband, Brian; John Reese; wife, Caitlin; and their daughter, Etta Anne; here in Sanford.
I graduated from what was Sanford Central High School (now Lee County High School), attended Salem College for two years and graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. . .a long time ago!
First Presbyterian was my home church. My grandfather, Dr. Lynn McIver, was clerk of the session there for over 50 years. It is an honor to follow in his footsteps by being the clerk of St. Francis and its director of communications.
St. Francis is a wonderful church home with transformative biblical teaching and a loving, engaged congregation. I am thankful to have served with the leadership of the prayer team and women’s ministry, as a chalice bearer, lector and member of the vestry.
Director of Student Ministries
I am a charter member of St. Francis where I have served as treasurer as well as a lector and chalice bearer since our founding in 2015.
I am a former submariner with the United States Navy, a graduate of the University of Florida and a retired CPA.
My wife, Peggy, and I have lived in Sanford since 1974, raising our two daughters, Pam and Jennifer, here in Sanford. We are now enjoying watching our grandchildren growing up close by--when we are not indulging our passion for travel.
I am also a past president of the Sanford Chamber of Commerce and an active member of the Lions Club, serving as their fair manager for the last five years.
I am a Sanford native with a B.A. from Campbell University
in music education. I have taught piano for over forty years and served as organist for Emmanuel Congregational Christian Church since 1977 and for St. Francis Anglican Parish since its inception in 2015.
My family includes husband, Billy Parten, and son Jason. I enjoy gardening, working with special needs youth and adults each summer at Happy Day Camp (for five decades!) and shagging with the Sanford Area Society of Shaggers and at North Myrtle Beach.
From the beginning, members of St. Francis have welcomed me--and all visitors--with open arms. It is a wonderful church family. Clearly the members love the Lord and He is very present in all they do. I encourage everyone who might be looking for a church home to "Come and see" if St. Francis might be just what they are looking for.