Honoring the Spirit of St. John’s

We acknowledge those who practice acts of unselfish support in the service of our church and community.

October Honorees!

The man behind the wall-fix dilemma and our own ‘endurance specialist,’ Matthew Cowperthwait, is our newest Spirit Award winner. Matt has chaired the St. John’s Master Plan Steering Committee since just before our grand Master Plan was sidelined by the need for extensive repairs to the building.
There’s a good reason his team members call him “Fearless Leader.” He calmly faced the fact that our front wall was deteriorating with every rainfall, and something had to be done before we could entertain dreams of building enhancements. Consultation with experts ensued and decisions were made. Then, in 2022 the team found out that repairs we voted to make will cost more than twice what we thought. Yet far from bemoaning the new situation, he and his team went back to work to find alternate solutions. What followed was Matt’s thoughtful and well-organized presentation, making each of our options clear, which gives us the benefit of fact-based, concrete choices before we vote. Everyone interested has had a chance to be heard and no matter the outcome of the vote, we know we can count on him to lead us through to resolution.
Church volunteers don’t often face such difficult issues in their tenure, but Matt has stood up to more than his share in the past few years. As a new Board President in 2019, it became his job to request police aid to keep the congregation safe from the threats of a mentally ill person who wished us harm. In 2020, it was Covid that threatened us. Matt had to make the decision to close St. John’s doors for the duration. He secured the government loan that allowed us to keep our precious staff in the interim. Through it all, with the cat or baby Theodore on his lap, Matt managed St. John’s work with his team over Zoom. To this day, his wicked sense of humor, positive attitude, and firm determination continues to keep us balanced.
Triathletes train to achieve endurance, strength, and speed, and Matt loves the sport. His long-time devotion to crossing the finish line no matter what the obstacles serves us well. As he tells his wife, Ashley, “If you want to see change, you can’t just wait for others, you have to put in the time and the work yourself.” Matt, we are grateful that you keep putting your words into action for the good of St. John’s.

To nominate someone, email Melanie Malaviya or Dot Wehrmeyer

For Previous Spirit Award Winners click on date.

January – June, 2022

July – December, 2021

January – June, 2021

June – December, 2020

All Honorees Alphabetically click here.