Episcopal Identity

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A Message from the
Rev’d Dr. Matthew E. Burdette

Rector

It is a joy for me to welcome you to our school. It won’t take you long to figure out that SCMS is a unique place—a truly special place that I hope you and your child will come to experience as a second home. I’m confident that you will.

My name is Father Matthew Burdette, and I serve Saint Christopher’s as Rector—which is what we Episcopalians call senior pastors. Saint Christopher’s Church and Montessori School are two sides of a singular community, and each side of this community shapes the other. The school shapes what sort of church we are, just as the church shapes our school. We are Episcopal in our Christian identity and Montessori in our educational philosophy and practice.

Obviously, you can find Episcopal identity or Montessori education in several places. Those things are core to who we are, but they aren’t what set us apart. What makes this place special is that we have incredible, dedicated educators who have developed a safe, fun, and family-like learning environment where children flourish and where parents also find community and friendship. And woven into the fabric of this environment is our Episcopal identity and our Montessori philosophy.

My growth into the person and the Christian I am today is because of people who instilled in me a sense of wonder, who inspired me to ask big questions and explore, and who called on me to take responsibility for myself while caring for others around me. That is, I was shaped by educators and church leaders like the ones we are blessed to have here at Saint Christophers.

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In the complex dynamic of church and school, my role is to remind us of who we are, and why we are here — and to support our Montessori way of learning and our Episcopal way of being a Christian. The church owns, oversees, and has final responsibility for the school, but the school operates autonomously, working with me and our church board (called a Vestry) to maintain operational excellence and to keep to its mission. 

Welcome to Saint Christopher’s. You’ve discovered a wonderful place. Please know that as pastor of this community, I am here to serve your family, and my door is always open to you.