• Rev. Jake Macklin

    Jake is a native of Sussex County and grew up spending time at local beaches like Fenwick Island. He received his degree in Elementary Education from Appalachian State University in 2009, and earned a Master of Divinity from Palmer Theological Seminary in 2016. Jake is an Ordained Elder in the Peninsula-Delaware Annual Conference of The United Methodist Church (UMC). 

    He served Kenton UMC in Kenton, DE from 2013-2017 and Gethsemane UMC in Seaford, DE from 2017-2021. On July 1, 2021, Jake began serving as the pastor at St. Matthews By the Sea UMC. Some of his passions include intentional faith development and serving in the community while developing relationships with others.

  • Sandy Donnely

    Office Manager

    Sandy joined our staff in 2020 and brings a lot of administrative organization to our church office. In addition to her proficient office administrative skills, she brings with her 25 years experience in Human Resource management and Contract Administration in both Engineering and Industrial Services and Aviation.  She enjoys spending time with her husband, two dogs, traveling, and being at the beach.  

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  • Debby Dudley

    Music Director

    Debby accepted the position of Music Director at SMBTS in 2015. Debby brings with her 45 years of teaching experience in the Indian River School District, a Bachelor of Science degree in Music Education from West Chester University, and a Master's in Education degree with a music concentration from Salisbury University.


    Her musical passion is evident at St. Matthews as she directs the Chancel Choir, schedules special music, schedules special music groups and soloists, and is the Sound and Technology chair.


    Personally, Debby enjoys spending time with her three sons Ryne, Rydge, and Tanner; she also enjoys spending time with her three dachshunds. Her hobbies include attending and watching sporting events, Christian concerts, and traveling. With Debby's love of the Lord and her passion for music ministry, it is a winning combination!

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  • MAry Brennan


    Mary adds a quiet wisdom to our church staff.   With her legal background, she does her job with accuracy and care.   

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Leadership Structure

In The United Methodist Church, there are five required committees each church must have in place. These committees are Church Council (or Administrative Council), Finance Committee, Nominations Committee, Staff-Parish Relations Committee (SPRC), and Trustees. 

Chairperson: Kelly Rymer

The church council provides for planning and implementing a program of nurture, outreach, witness, and resources in the local church. The church council also provides for the administration of its organization and temporal life. It shall envision, plan, implement, and annually evaluate the mission and ministry of the church. 

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Chairperson: Pat Plocek

The finance committee proposes the yearly budget of the church; further, this committee then raises, manages, and distributes the financial resources of the congregation to support and strengthen the mission and ministry of the congregation.

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Chairperson: Rev. Jake Macklin

This committee on nominations and leadership development guides church leaders on matters regarding laity in leadership of the congregation. This committee takes time to consider who in the congregation would be a good fit to serve in a variety of leadership opportunities. 

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Chairperson: Anita angeny

An effective Staff-Parish Relations Committee (SPRC) builds a strong positive relationship between staff and congregation so that the congregation makes disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world. This committee will work with the pastor and other staff to fulfill legal and ethical responsibilities related to staff.

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Chairperson: Terry Wildermuth

Trustees function as Christian stewards of the property God has entrusted to the congregation. This includes supervising and maintaining both the physical property of the congregation and gifts made to the congregation so that the ministries of the congregation can be effective and all legal requirements related to the property are satisfied.

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JoAnn serves as a wonderful Lay Leader and has been an active part of this congregation for many years; she also has served in a variety of leadership positions here at the church including Church Council Chair, bible study teacher, prayer group leader, and Lay Delegate to Annual Conference. An effective lay leader functions as the primary representative and role model of Christian discipleship and faith lived out in the church and in daily life. The lay leader works with the pastor to fulfill the mission and vision of the congregation.

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Missions Committee  

Kelly Rymer, Chairperson

Missions are a big part of St. Matthews!  We have a Neighbors Helping Neighbors Committee that strives to be the hands and feet of Christ.  Our United Methodist Men and United Women in Faith raise funds and have activities to support multiple charitable organizations.  Our Music Ministry shares their gifts with our town and with a local Nursing Home.  And our Missions Committee reviews and recommends Missions to be supported within the annual church budget.  St. Matthews strives to share God’s love locally and globally by partnering with a variety of ministries that help us to follow the call to “Go and Make Disciples in the World”!


Our 2024 Budgeted Missions Committee Supported Missions include:


Christian Friends of Korea

Humanitarian efforts helping communities through focused Health Care Center support


International Students

Supply meals to share Christian hospitality to young international workers in our community


Mission Aviation Fellowship

Access to life-giving necessities and the love of Christ to people living in remote corners of the world


Red Bird Mission School & Central Appalachian Ministry Conference

Education, Health and Wellness Initiatives and Community Outreach for a population in need


Seed Company

Bible Translation bringing Scripture to every people group and culture in the world


Sussex County Crises Housing Center

Working to ensure every man, woman, and child in Sussex County falls asleep with a roof overhead


Sussex County Pregnancy Center

Education, information, and support services for lifestyle and pregnancy issues in a Christian setting


TMS Global Missionaries:  The Roberts

Teachers, Eye Clinic Care, and Faith Group leaders in the Middle East


UMC Global Missionaries: Lorraine Charinda

Agricultural Rural Economic Development Specialist serving the Democratic Republic of Congo


The Way Home

Holistic support after prison that generates hope, self-sufficiency, and connection to the community


World Link International Ministries

Linking indigenous missionaries with the resources they need to share God’s love and Good News